Tag Archives: overly optimistic psychiatrists

The power of hope


I’ve been thinking about hope a lot lately.  I mean, how can one not?  With the election and inauguration of Obama, hope is in the air.  You saw it in the faces of all those millions of people who trekked to DC to stand for hours cheek to jowl in freezing temperatures.  I saw it in my friends, my colleagues and complete strangers, this hope that things will get better for us, our country and the world.  Hope is truly transformative.

But this post isn’t about Obama or politics or others.  As usual, it’s about me, and my own experience with transformative power of hope.

As anyone who reads this blog on a regular basis knows,  during my 20’s, I spiraled out of control with drinking born of depression.  I mean, I can’t really blame me.  I was raped when I was 21, my mother died suddenly when I was 22, my father was diagnosed with cancer when I was 23 and died of it when I was 24. And this was while I was also dealing with the minor crises of life of school, housing and personal relationships.  I also had some pretty strong genetic markers for depression as my father had been hospitalized for it when I was a teen, and my mother was agoraphobic due to an untreated anxiety/panic  disorder.  Oh, yeah, and they both drank.  Basically, I was drowning in my own toxic gene pool.

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