Ami, a Twitter friend, published a very real, very honest, very brave post on her blog about her fight with depression. You can read it here. My heart cried for her. Yet I celebrated her words, the way she dragged depression and suicide into the light for all to see. We need to see it. We need to acknowledge it.
So we can fight it.
Depression whispers that no one will care how you feel, because you’re nothing. So you hide it. Depression leads you deeper and deeper into the blackness of oblivion because that’s what you deserve. And you follow it because it must be right. Depression can even urge you to end your life. Because who would care?
A lot of people would care!
I will share my story in hopes of continuing Ami’s good work. My road is different than hers, not nearly as dark, but relevant, for depression comes in many forms all of which need to be acknowledged. For I didn’t suffer from depression… I was depressed.
In 1995, I got married, turned 23 years old, and moved away from everyone and everything I knew. I found a job and, for years, simply existed. Dreams? I had no idea what to be when I grew up. No friends. No family. I had no purpose other than being a wife. When my husband came home, I became real. When he was gone, I was no one.
My job made me crazy. I hated it there. So I quit. And everything fell apart.
And by everything… I mean me.
I applied here and there for a job and nothing. My guilt at not making money grew. I was certain my husband thought me a failure. I was worthless. I cried at everything… at nothing. I would get out of bed only to sit on the couch for hours and watch TV.
My family had no clue. My husband rolled his eyes every time I cried. I had no idea of the dark hole I had dug for myself. Until I climbed out. Until years later when I could see it, that ugly stain on my past… that point in time where I didn’t matter.
Not clinically depressed, I didn’t take medication. I never saw a therapist, though I think that would have been a good idea.
I involved myself in the world and, in so doing, found my place in it.
I still go there in my head, catch myself thinking that I’m not worth anything to anyone. But not as much. I still cry, but everyone does.
When you lose your purpose, when you start to doubt your worth to the world… to yourself, find someone to talk to. Keep looking, keep talking until you find the one person who will listen.
Depression is real, and it’s a nasty piece of work.
We need to talk about it. Drag those suckers into the light and deal with them, because when you pull nightmarish monsters into the sun, they wither and die. Good thoughts, positivity, and listening can vanquish the dark. Don’t forget the magic you possess that can help people heal, that can lead people into the light.