When I backed away from college at twenty one, I landed a job as a fashion assistant at one of the most elite fashion magazines in the world. Being the bad bitch that I am, I tore into an industry more competitive than finance or communications or medicine.
In the spirit of graduations, someone, who was clearly overlooking the severe chronic illness that plagues my day-to-day, reminded me that a bachelor’s degree “is something no one can take away from you.” You presume to tell me what no one can take away from me?
The only thing no one can take from me is my dignity. Every day is a success, if I have succeeded at only that: not letting someone rob me of my dignity. When you struggle with your mental health, you are presented with endless opportunites to submit it.
“Hi, I’m a doctor with a God-complex. Submit your dignity now.”
“Hi, I’m the colleague who’s judging the state of my car. Submit your dignity now.”
“Hi, I’m the community service center that still calls things like postpartum depression baby blues. Submit your dignity.”
“I’m my own psyche, cleaning up the coffee I spilled on my leggings and realizing there is a coffee stain there from yesterday. Submit your dignity.”
The only way you can win the struggle with mental illness is to hang onto it… with literally, your life.
Four year college is not for everyone. You know what they had a lot of at FIT? Night classes.
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