Depression has consumed my life. I take my medicine, I go to the doctor, and I push myself to list the positives when I want to dwell on the negative. I just stopped living. I have had more suicidal thoughts than I can count in the past three months and my life is in shambles.
Today, I feel good. I woke up well rested….and I actually slept a healthy 8 hours uninterrupted. I have plenty to be happy about. I just came off a week vacation from visiting my family in Arizona. (I moved out of state in July 2018). I started a new job and even pulled myself off of academic probation in school. So why have I felt like this? I feel that I need a reminder sometimes that my mental health is an ongoing issue. It creeps up and kicks me in the ass as if to remind me that I am not as okay as I think I am.
I am okay. I just have bad days. I have good days too. Days that are so great that I almost feel like the bad ones were all in my head, that I was focusing on the negative and just got lost in it. Depression is not just bad days. It is an all-consuming monster that eats at you until you have nothing left to give and nothing left for yourself most importantly.
Ironically, I woke up to a very foggy day in Houston….shocker I know. I felt refreshed and it was as if I could think clearly for the first time in a long time. I made myself an impromptu appointment with my doctor because thoughts of self-harm are no joke and I have never experienced it like that before. I hope that I have the courage to tell her what has been happening.
I am sure someone can relate. I write this because I need to remember. I need to remember the good day that follows all the bad ones. I need to remember reflecting on the never-ending thoughts of wanting to just be done and know that it happened. Unfortunately, I need to remind myself that I have an illness and I cannot let my guard down. Even on my best days it is still there waiting for the opportunity to take over.
I write this because I had a lot of shame in reaching out to my family in Arizona. Having to tell someone 1000 miles away that you feel worse than ever just felt like a dick move. I needed to for accountability. I needed someone to check in on me and remind me that my actions affect others. I needed to be reminded that I am important to others.
I write this because it is the truth. I am ashamed and quite frankly in denial that these thoughts even cross my mind in my depressive cycles. I have a print out of one of those sappy posts that people put on social media whenever a suicide occurs (blunt but true). The ones that say, “please reach out to me if you feel this way, you are loved!”. I have it on my bulletin board above my desk to remind myself that thoughts turn into actions and people are aware of that. It reminds me that this thing I think is so taboo is in fact not.
I write this because I think someone else might need to read it. You aren’t insane. You shouldn’t hide it. You should tell anyone that will listen if you feel this way. You should tell them until you don’t feel that way anymore. My text conversations with my family have consisted of this:
Famiy member: Hey babe. Just went to the store and we are planning on seeing a movie tonight. Just wanted to check in and see how you are today. Let me know if you need anything. Love you.
Me: Still not having a great day. I am going to work and have homework tonight. Call me around 8 PM my time? Love you.
My phone conversations are just them telling me about their day and asking how work was. It lasts about ten minutes. 9 of the minutes are them and one is me.
I don’t want to talk. I don’t have anything to say. I feel like shit. That call makes me accountable. I have a goal, get through the day and answer the phone. It is stupid and insignifigant but it is something to strive for.
Find something to strive for on your bad days.
*also, Texas has had approximately five sunny days in 2019 (no exaggeration). I would love to hear any experience or thoughts on seasonal depression.