Sometimes out of nowhere, the depression monster tries to drag you down to a fiery inferno of helplessness and self-destruction.
Cycles of blame, guilt, shame, sadness and hoplessness hit like crashing waves. And I didn't have a life jacket.
Some might not understand this feeling of dread and crushing sadness. Others might know exactly what I am talking about.
I could sense that something was going to happen. For the past few weeks I have been able to see the storm clouds gathering in the horizon, and the pressure mounting. I tried my best to do what I could to combat them, but sometimes you can't hold back the storm. Friday night it started to get pretty bad. Saturday was worse. But come Sunday the storm broke with greater force than ever before. My husband held me while I cried and cried and cried and cried.
Monday began the process of trying to claw my way out of the darkness. Monday and Tuesday were tearful, awful, long days. My husband was a saint through it all. Bless his heart. Even when I was weapy, mean, critical, totally illogical and crazy he loved me and held me and told me it would be ok.
Wednesday was better. Much better. And even though I started to panic because tomorrow (otherwise known as today) was November, I felt like I could handle it. Like everything would be ok. I'm still fighting. My days aren't fantastic. But I am Ok. I've got this.
Now... I am not writing this for sympathy. I promise I am doing ok. I am taking the steps necessary for me to survive and get better. I write this for everyone else out there who feels alone in their depression. I write this so that you know, each and every one of you, that it is ok. I am not ashamed of who I am and the struggles I face. And you don't need to be either. I will admit that I struggle with depression, and that doesn't mean I can't handle life any less than someone else. It doesn't mean that I am weak. It just means that sometimes I've got some extra challenging days. I have to work extra hard to put a smile on my face.
I don't want anyone else to be ashamed of who you are. Be proud of the trials you have faced. In admitting your own weaknesses you are defining your strengths. Life would not have sunny days without some storms.
I don't want to offer advice on how I deal with my monster because everyone's monster is different. I am beginning to identify harmful behaviors. For instance, trying to drown sadness with food. It ain't gonna work! But that doesn't stop me from trying. Other times I burrow my way into someone else's reality and get lost in endless episodes of some sitcom. Or a book. Anything to escape my own head. And you know what, sometimes when I finally come up for air, I feel better because I was able to take a break from me.
Sometimes we just have to take a break from ourselves.
So, to my friends in the trenches with monsters hidden under your sweaters, glossed over by your smiles and fake "I'm fine's". It is ok. If you need to talk to someone, talk to me. I know how it feels. I have bad days. I have super bad days. But I'm still here. I am still fighting, and I am telling you my story so you know that you are not alone. Ever.