Much of the reason why I haven’t been writing lately is because I’ve been battling a pretty intense bout of depression, and while I can’t say I’m out of it, I’m at least trying to work with it now.
Last week was Mental Health Awareness Week, and many people shared their stories either through photographs, or literary accounts and even cartoons. Given that I’m just getting back into the writing thing, I’ll spare you the story, and instead give you a list of what my depression feels like to me. For anyone who’s been depressed, may this be solidarity for you. To anyone that hasn’t, may it open up some level of understanding.
- My depression feels like being incredibly lonely but not having the energy to engage with people, and when I finally do, feeling like my very presence is burdensome, like I’m sorry for existing.
- It’s having no desire to get out of bed in the morning, but doing so, and having just enough energy to haul ass at work, only to find myself so exhausted by the end of the day, that I go to bed at maybe 8PM, and don’t make myself dinner.
- It feels like laughing to my therapist.
- It’s seeing other people happy and feeling like joy is some exclusive party that I’ll never be invited too.
- My depression feels like working really hard at everything, and then giving up because I’m not getting results and I’m just going to die someday anyway.
- It’s not writing because no one ever read my stuff.
- It’s not calling my dad because he’s got enough going on.
- It is getting negative feedback at work and taking it way too personally because this is literally everything I can give anything at this moment and I’m so emotionally exhausted that I am choosing this one thing to try at because I like it and it pays my bills. It is the only thing I have the capacity to try at right now.
- It’s reading everything going on in this country and canceling plans because it breaks the fuck out of my heart. Can we start being compassionate please?
- It’s shutting people out, like everyone, and being unable to take a joke.
- It’s cycling back into and out of a toxic relationship because it’s the best of what’s been around for a really long time.
- It’s knowing that I have felt better, but not knowing how to get there again.
- It’s a stranger returning a smile on the street and being reminded I’m not a ghost.
- It’s when alcohol is the only thing that seems to turn the negative voice inside my head off.
So to anyone that’s going through this, I’m with you. Try your best to be kind to yourself during this time. And to anyone who’s not- a little compassion goes a long way. While you can’t relate, try to be understanding.