Feel the Depression, Do It Anyway | Finding the Right Words Day 1

20230901_164028Every room in the house is a mess.

I’ve been trying to clean my home for 5 months. Each time I start to get organized, something goes wrong. Between the stress of leaving my job, moving back home, losing a friend, losing two aunts, getting sick, losing my home (temporarily), family drama, boy drama, getting sick again and then one more time just for fun… it’s been a pretty shitty spring and summer, to put it lightly.

My mind is a lot like my house right now. Everything is in disarray and I don’t know where to start putting it back together. Should I move my body and go back to the gym? Well, I’ll need gym clothes for that so I should do laundry. If I have time to clear out your closet, I should be spending it looking for a job. I should feel bad about being unemployed. I should feel bad about letting my feeling bad cause me to distance myself from my friends. I should feel bad about gaining weight while self isolating. I should go to the gym. Well, if I’m going to do that, I need to do laundry…

​​On and on the cycle of thought goes and nothing gets done and it seems simpler to just crawl back into the bed I’ve been metaphorically chained to and let the rhetorical and literal mess continue to pile up and drown me.

…That’s depression for ya.

Depression is so fucking dumb.

Like, it is the dumbest, most stupidest thing in the entire world. And I can say that as a card carrying, prescription popping, DSM-diagnosed person with moderate to severe clinical depression (and a sprinkle of anxiety and PTSD thrown in for a little razzle dazzle).

It’s more than just feeling “sad.” It’s feeling… incapable. Of anything. Depression has a powerful yet subtle little voice that tells you “don’t” repeatedly. Don’t get up. Don’t bother. Don’t move. Don’t try. Don’t annoy anyone with your emotions. Don’t do anything. And in some severe cases, don’t live.

Even things that will make you happy or feel good or accomplished, depression whispers, “Now why would you do a thing like that? Wouldn’t it be better if you just… didn’t?” What if you didn’t answer the phone when your mom is calling even though you miss her? What if you didn’t journal even though you and your therapist know it will help you feel better? What if you didn’t go to dance class and see all your friends? What if you didn’t reply to those emails of employment opportunities? What if you just don’t bother??!

Depression tells you you don’t deserve anything. That people and circumstances–and by proxy, you!–will be better off if you just didn’t get in the way. So, you do get out of the way. You bury yourself under a cloud of sadness and despair. And when that fog finally lifts, you can see all the life you neglected and all the people who’ve been waiting for you on the other side. And sometimes, that’s enough to make you feel so ashamed and wanna crawl back under the comfort of the covers and let the fog take over again.

But each time you emerge, you gotta just let yourself start over. If my depression has taught me anything, it’s how to start over.

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