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Coping with depression is hard. This poignant comic shows one woman's journey.

Zandt's comic essay shows just how debilitating depression can be and taking medication to cope with it doesn't make one a failure.

Deanna Zandt is a media technologist and author of "Share This! How You Will Change the World with Social Networking."

Take a quick look at her site's "about" page and try really hard to not be impressed.

She co-founded and runs a digital strategy company; has spoken at conferences including TEDxBerlin; is a frequent guest on news networks including MSNBC, CNN, and BBC Radio; and was the first recipient of the social media Maggie Award for Media Excellence from Planned Parenthood of America.


Screenshot via TEDx Talks/YouTube.

She's also dealt with depression for about 20 years.

For a long time, she was able to balance things through a routine that included meditation and yoga.

But then, two years ago, it stopped being enough.

She didn't know what was going on. And when she tried new methods, like acupuncture and craniosacral therapy, and those still weren't helping, she started to feel like a failure. That's when she decided to go to a doctor.

Her doctor diagnosed her with major depression. And he prescribed Prozac to help treat it.

GIF from "Glee."

This was not what Zandt wanted to hear. But even though she'd dealt with depression before — this time, it was different. And she needed help.

So she swallowed her pride ... and her new medication.

Slowly, she started to feel better.

Zandt knows that there are many people like her who never thought they'd take antidepressants. Stigma against mental health medication made her hesitant to take it at first. That's why she created a touching comic that takes us along her journey of coming to terms with it. She wants everyone to know that it's perfectly OK.

Stigma against mental health — and taking medication for it — is widespread.

Studies consistently show that it's one of the biggest barriers to getting help and staying on meds.

That's why efforts like Deanna's comic and the recent viral hashtag #MedicatedAndMighty are so important: they help break down barriers so that people feel freer to pursue the treatment they need to live healthier, happier lives.

Here's to healthier humans living on this planet more willingly and joyfully!

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

When schools closed early in the spring, the entire country was thrown for a loop. Parents had to figure out what to do with their kids. Teachers had to figure out how to teach students at home. Kids had to figure out how to navigate a totally new routine that was being created and altered in real time.

For many families, it was a big honking mess—one that many really don't want to repeat in the fall.

But at the same time, the U.S. hasn't gotten a handle on the coronavirus pandemic. As states have begun reopening—several of them too early, according to public health officials—COVID-19 cases have risen to the point where we now have more cases per day than we did during the height of the outbreak in the spring. And yet President Trump is making a huge push to get schools to reopen fully in the fall, even threatening to possibly remove funding if they don't.

It's worth pointing out that Denmark and Norway had 10 and 11 new cases yesterday. Sweden and Germany had around 300 each. The U.S. had 55,000. (And no, that's not because we're testing thousands of times more people than those countries are.)

The president of the country's largest teacher's union had something to say about Trump's push to reopen schools. Lily Eskelsen Garcia says that schools do need to reopen, but they need to be able to reopen safely—with measures that will help keep both students and teachers from spreading the virus and making the pandemic worse. (Trump has also criticized the CDCs "very tough & expensive guidelines" for reopening schools.)

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