Diagnosed with Depression

By March 8, 2019Depression
Portrait of woman diagnosed with depression
This member story was featured in a mental health exhibition in Malaysia titled Return To Light.

When I was 19 years old I was diagnosed with depression, I was put on medication and sent on my way. Afterwards I would sporadically look to find a therapist who I felt comfortable enough with to share my struggles, worries and thoughts with. I would go off and back on my medication for a variety of reasons; pregnancies, lack of ability to pay high co-pays and the desire to be “normal” and not require medications to help me manage my moods. For me, this last one was always my biggest driving force and the most disappointing. Even, when I felt I was in a good place, I knew my mood was not what it should be or what I wanted it to be.

Today, in a society where so many are searching for their five minutes of fame, I lack any desire to be one of those people with whom everyone knows their name or face. When I think about developing my “best self,” I stay focused on a saying I once heard about improving at least 1% each day. What I do to achieve this 1% each day may look very different from day to day, but as long as I am actively working on making some small “improvement” in myself and my life I know I am slowly creating my best self.

So, what exactly does this look like? How can I be sure that today I improved something by 1%? Each night, I try to make a mental log of my day and determine if their is something in my day that I have done differently, that has improved my mood or simply moved me forward in my personal goals.

Some days I fall short and come away identifying that I did not make my 1%, but I do not identify this as defeat. I do not look at this as a reason to give up. I do not beat myself up or call myself a failure. No, instead I look forward and identify how I can do better.

These simple steps each day keeps me moving forward to my best self.

— Crystal Miller


Here are some of the personal notes the attendees left for Crystal!


“You deserve it! You proved that you did it. Congratulation!”

“Your strengths inspiring! Take a deep breath & stay strong. Enjoy Life. ❤️”

“You’re enough! There is strength in being vulnerable and feeling the hard emotions.”

“Thank you for this inspiring story. You are stronger than you think you are.”

“Dear, you’re your best self.”



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The One Project is a community of passionate creatives, advocates and caring friends or family members working to support each other and change the conversation around mental health issues like depression, anxiety and more with therapeutic photography.

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