30 Days of MD: Writing as Coping Mechanism


by Danielle "Dani" Liptak |

Share this article:

Share article via email

View this post on Instagram

Day 13 of #30DaysOfMD Introducing Zee: she gave me a pale yellow spiral-bound journal with california oranges on the cover, its pages blank and unlined, and said “you’re a writer, right? so write.” my therapist had no idea of the preexisting journals i’d filled and kept, nor did she have any idea what was in them or that i’d stopped writing. she didn’t know why i was so anxious and depressed, she just knew i was. and i doubt she had any idea i would pick up that abandoned spiral-bound notebook 3 years later to once again, start writing. writing gives me a space to be, judgement-free and void of negativity. there’s no pressure to portray a healthy person or be an inspiration for the able-bodied. i don’t have to be careful with my words here. it’s been said that the act of writing across a page, from left to right repeatedly, calms down the brain. i don’t know the scientific legitimacy of the statement. however, i do know i feel better when i write. it’s one of the healthier coping mechanisms i know of. i can process my grief and loss around the progression of this disease. i can shout into the void during a depressive episode and i know even though no one will hear me, the pressure has gone to a safer place. “i picked up a pen and held it to the paper to see if my thoughts would bleed.” and they did. and they do. the paper soaks up this pain like a tourniquet. oftentimes, when faced with change or something new, there are too many emotions to keep track of. the diagnosis of my muscular dystrophy came to me when i was a toddler. toddlers can’t properly process something so severely life-changing like a diagnosis that would affect their entire lives. i accepted my diagnosis but i didn’t truly accept it. as this disease is a progressive one, it’s difficult to accept a reality that is slowly and constantly changing. it’s frustrating to seemingly be in a constant state of grief. so i write through my frustration and all the pain. and i find after a while, it hurts a little less. CONTINUED IN COMMENTS*

A post shared by MDNewsToday (@mdnewstoday) on