Friday, January 22, 2016

Depression.


I consider myself a sometimes overly optimistic human being.  I always hope for the best and I believe good things will happen and everything will work out in the end.  I often feel like I can take on any task and conquer the world. Sometimes, I even feel confident in my abilities and think my personality is a particularly good one and I’m someone worthy of love and respect. 

Sometimes I think these things.  And when I do, it’s really great.  Feeling good about yourself is honestly the best feeling in the world!  When I really, truly love myself - it feels better than it has ever felt to be loved by someone else. 

If only it weren’t so fleeting and infrequent. 

Depression is a monster that I’ve lived with since I was a teenager.  Most times, I try and I try and I blow its house down… but there are times it defeats me.  Lately, it’s been defeating me a whole lot.  I wake up every morning with it sitting comfortably on my chest and only goes away after a few cups of coffee, a shower and writing down a to-do list so I can feel as though I have a little bit of control over my life.  But it never actually goes away, it just stands by my side.  All day long. 

When I’m driving to work, it’s sitting in the passenger seat judging me for listening to the Hamilton soundtrack again.  It shares a desk with me.  It attends every meeting with me.  It spends the entire day trying to push me down.  And whenever there’s nobody around, it wins.  It forces me into the bathroom to cry, it takes me on walks to cry and sometimes when it’s really bad, it sends me out to my car to hide… and cry. 

The past few months, I’ve been working out every single day to combat it.  It works a little bit, and at the very least I’ve lost 30 pounds, but the high doesn’t last very long.  It feels like I can’t go a full hour without being overshadowed by my own mind.  

There are reasons I feel this way and some of them are even legitimate due to life changes and such.  But for the most part, it’s just being down on myself and refusing to give myself a break.  It’s feeling guilty for things I can’t fix, change or control.  It’s wishing I could turn back time.  It’s fear for the future and a heavy focus on things that happened and mistakes I may have made in the past.  It’s assuming people’s (negative) opinions of me.  It’s wishing for contact with someone I desperately want contact with.  And the cherry on top is how horrible I feel for feeling depressed over seemingly nothing when other people have it much, much worse.

It’s really fucking overwhelming.  And lately, I have really wanted to give up.  I go to bed every night super early because I can’t stand being awake and dealing with this.  I wake up miserable and it takes far too long to break out of it.  I’m afraid to take even a SIP of alcohol because of the even darker thoughts it brings out. I just want to throw in the towel and let the waves crash over me and be found washed up on a beach like that sea monster in Montauk

I won’t, but I want to. 

As hard as life feels, I’ll still get out of bed every morning.  I’ll go to work and say inappropriate things in an attempt to make everyone laugh.  I’ll sing parody songs that don’t make sense. (Such as “Quit Cigarettes and Vape Time” instead of “Heard It Through The Grapevine”).  I’ll listen to Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton duel it out for the 160th time.  I’ll scroll through Instagram and only like pictures of dogs.  I’ll do the same old Pilates routine while watching Vanderpump Rules.  It’ll get better. It always does. 

There will come a day when I will suddenly feel hopeful again and I’ll happily swim with the waves instead of casually doggie paddling and hoping they swallow me whole.  But I think it’s important to talk about depression and realize it’s happening and that it’s going to be hard and I’m not just feeling sad for the sake of feeling sad. I have to stop feeling so guilty.  It’s a legitimate disease and as long as I’m doing all that I can to keep it at bay, then it’s going to be okay. 

Depression will always be the basilisk in my secret chamber that I need to stab with the sword of Gryffindor.  That’s a Harry Potter reference that also sounds vaguely sexual.  It’ll always be lurking in the background, ready to pounce whenever I’m feeling a little vulnerable.  I refuse to let it own my life, but I’ve come to terms that it’ll always be there and it’s my responsibility to take care of myself and let it know who it’s boss.

Angela. Angela is the boss.

3 comments:

Lindsay Scouras said...

Patty,

I'm so sorry to hear what you've been going through, especially because I think you're one of the funniest people out there. But that's always the way, isn't it? The people that seem so fun and carefree are the ones sometimes that have the most inner demons that are tormenting them.

I'm not even going to try to offer any advice or say something like "keep your head up! It will get better!" because I don't really know anything about the correct way to deal with this, but I know that comments like that definitely don't help. Just want you to know that you're awesome and I'm thinking of you <3

~L

Anonymous said...

Wow. I felt like I was reading one of my own journal entries...except yours was more optimistic--more realistic, rather.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings with us. It makes me feel less "crazy" for feeling and thinking the way that I do. It makes me feel less alone.

I don't have any inspirational things to advise because like you, I also bear this burden. I guess all we can do is wait for it (my favorite): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ReTP6x_sDiM

-a fan

Anna said...

First of all: I really am sorry to hear what you're going through. I have been feeling the same way for a few months now. But I am glad that at the end of each time you fight for control, you always seem to make sure that you win. You will always win over this. There are things in life we can't control and yet feel guilty of. It's hard to deal with that but we keep on trying, exhausting ourselves inside and out. But you said it so aptly, "You're the boss." Keep on hanging there and know that this will pass and things will get better. You have friends and family; people who love you. You'll get through this.

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