Hi everyone. It sure has been a while since I wrote one of these. Ah, life. Always busy.
So why post now, you ask? It’s pretty simple. I’m at the height of a depression wave and wanted to write a little blog about it. There, you’re forewarned.
I always thought that having depression made me weak somehow. I should be able to control my emotions and thoughts like everyone else. Why can’t I just be a little blue but then move on? The easy answer, I guess, is that my brain isn’t set up for it. The harsh reality is that I have a chemical imbalance that prevents me from being happy/non-anxious/not feeling like everything is crumbling down around me constantly.
I have moments have feeling fine and I cherish the living hell out of them. I’ve had this dark cloud over my head for as long as I can possibly remember. When the light does decide to break through I try to bask in it because I know it won’t last.
I’ve been told lots of things that would ‘fix’ me over the years. Take this herb, drink this tea, read this book, THINK POSITIVE, get over it, THINK POSITIVE, focus on the good things that happen, THINK POSITIVE. I’ve been told that thinking positively would cure me so many times since I was 10 that it’s sickening. Those of you who say this mean well, and I know that. But you’re off base. Why?
Because I literally CAN’T. If it were as easy as just think about happy positive things don’t you think I’d have tried that years ago? I have. It doesn’t work. My brain won’t let me. Not for long. And all thinking about positive stuff does is make me feel more sad.
I know I’ve survived a lot of really shitty stuff in my life. Child abuse, harassment at school, stalkers terrorizing my family, grandma dying and all of the horrors that came with it, dad dying and all of the horrors that came with a three year cancer battle, my own cancer journey, and I have managed to survive my own mind being against me despite the fact that it tells me every day “you don’t have to deal with this, you know..there’s another way”.
Ah yes the uncomfortable one. Not all depression leads to suicidal thoughts or tendencies. I have clinical depression with suicidal thoughts and tendencies. I think Mom and Sara call it Suicidal Ideation.
Side note: I just googled Suicidal Ideation and google popped up with a thing that said “you aren’t alone, contact us for help” with the number for the suicide prevention hotline and a way to online chat with someone. That’s amazing. I wish they’d had the chat option when I was a teenager. I’d have used the hell out of it.
I was told a year or so ago that those who attempt suicide/commit suicide are stupid. People, hear me when I tell you this. That isn’t true. I won’t pretend to know the reason everyone commits suicide. I don’t. Some people do it for extremely selfish reasons. But not all of us do. And none of us are stupid for it.
I tried to commit suicide the first time when I was 10 1/2. The last time was when I was 20, not long after my grandma died. I’m almost 31. If you think for one second that the urge has gone away? You’re wrong. Once that option pops into your head, it’s there. Period. There’s no getting that thought out. You can fight it, for sure. Absolutely. And you should! I fight it every damn day.
Rationally I know that I have a lot to live for. I have a great job that I love. I have great family who I adore. I have a niece and nephew who would freak the hell out if I weren’t around.
What does the depression tell me though? “They’ll get over it.” “They’ll thank you someday.” “You’re a loser so who cares if you’re still around?” “You’re stupid.” “You’re worthless.” “They don’t know they want you gone but they’ll be glad when you are,” Etc.
But I keep fighting. And I’ll continue to fight. Because rationally I’m aware that I’m wrong. I also don’t really want to die. And I don’t like being melancholy and anxious all the time.
But I deal with it. I take the antidepressants that make me feel like a failure as a human being and make me feel weak. I try to put on a happy face for those around me. And for now? That’s enough.