Coming To Terms With Depression
I did a 20 question depression survey yesterday and, while I know that it’s not an official diagnosis nor is it 100% accurate, the signs are there and have been right under my nose for some time while I have denied it. This isn’t the first time depression has cropped up. When I was 17 (it wasn’t a very good year, Frank) I did a similar, more in-depth questionnaire in which I came out as borderline depressed and was prescribed Citalopram and I ceased taking them after a few months as I was sure they caused stomach problems that I experienced after having started the medication and from then I always said that it was just teenage angst that made it look like I was possibly depressed.
My main question has always been, “What have I got to be depressed about?” I mean, sure life sucks and the older you get the more evident that becomes and life throws up many obstacles. But I guess the obvious answer, which had to be spelled out by my partner is that my 2014 was very tumultuous, what with the passing of my Mum to the cunt that is cancer and the hectic days, weeks and months that ensued what with juggling a fulltime job, the birth of my youngest daughter mere days after my Mum passed away, running a business and all of life’s other responsibilities.
I guess I’m still in denial mainly because of the desire to “not have anything wrong with me” and the stigma around depression and other mental health issues. Perhaps it’s also a bit of naivete where I want to demonstrate I’m “fine” which in turn puts more pressure on me and most likely fuelled my recent health issues. Part of me thinks that to admit to suffering from depression is a cry for attention/help and by bottling it up it may just go away. Lie for long enough and you end up convincing yourself and others to the point where that lie becomes the truth but, evidently, that trick doesn’t work on depression.
This post, in itself, is not a plea for help or sympathy but a means of me getting it off my chest. I need to find my means of coping. My outlet, if you will. No amount of Googling gives a straight answer for overcoming something like this and that’s no surprise because everyone is different, the causes or nature of the problem also vary. I’ve always wanted to write more and try to regain my creativity that I possessed in my teens. When I was writing, it felt good. Whether it be fiction or just a general rant/vent about things. Perhaps social media has killed that in the sense that you can post a quick micro blog to Twitter or Facebook negating the need to write anything more substantial. I could easily post a short update regarding depression on Facebook but the attention that draws is not helpful to me nor is it what I want.
So what do I want? What a question. If only I knew. I want this cloud to leave. I want my mind to be free from this everlasting fog that seems to drain me of any inspiration, productivity and enjoyment of things. As a parent, it feels criminal to think that I do not get much joy from parenting. Rather than relish in the milestones that each of my daughters reach, I focus on the toils and frustration when they’re not behaving. Maybe this is where I’ve been going wrong…maybe if I open up and describe how I feel my mindset changes and I’m able to find joy in the little things they do. Don’t get me wrong, I feel proud of them and I love seeing them in their concerts and playing. I love the fact they are developing their own little characters and coming on in leaps and bounds in terms of understanding, language and generally growing up but I have this constant feeling of wishing they would grow up faster despite the fact that it saddens me to see them growing up so quickly and I know they’re not children for long. It’s like a double-edged sword – I know how I should think and feel but I can’t stop myself from doing the opposite. Thus I feel like a failure.
I try to impart a lot of the values I was brought up with and feel I have done a pretty good job and want to continue but sometimes, good work doesn’t always give you the pride it’s deserving of.
While I know this gives ammo to my critics and makes me look like a pathetic wretch, I have to be honest about the shit going on to try and change things. I think. The most trivial of things get on top of me and the simplest of tasks take an age to get the motivation to do. I’m constantly tired and, where I used to just sleep and let time pass me by now that I have kids, a job and responsibilities I can’t do that and I don’t really want to yet still feel compelled to do it.
Again, I know how I should think, behave and function but it feels like there’s always an invisible barrier between that me and this me and ne’er the two shall meet.
I feel ashamed to feel this way, to think this way and to be this way and that’s what I need to change. How I’ll do it…I don’t know but hopefully by blogging and actually committing to regular posts I can chip away at it. I always want to blog but never know what to write. There’s many things I want to do and I put off and it gets to the stage that it no longer feels relevant considering the time that has passed so I don’t bother. I’ve always said I will blog more frequently or whatever and never do but I really need to change that in order to start changing everything else.
Despite the numerous statements about me within this post, I actually hate talking about myself because I am not interesting and why would/should anyone care about what I have to say? It’s time to forget that and focus on just doing this for me. I need to stop caring what people think and be a little more selfish when it comes to my own well-being. Perhaps I’ll meet other people on similar journeys. Who knows? I just need to keep wandering and eventually I will reach where I want to be. If I stop, then there’s no chance of ever arriving.