|Photo by Greg Rosenke on Unsplash|
That's true. And, yet, a huge understatement.
I can see ways that I've improved:
- I can more readily spot the signs of depression worsening.
- I have been growing my toolbox with ways to help me in battle.
- I find myself reaching outside of myself more than I used to.
I'm trying to focus on those things, but the truth is that there's so much other stuff chattering in the background... that I'm right back where I've been time and time and time again. Like there's no way to not.
Over the years, I've experienced depression to varying degrees. It's always there, though the depth, intensity, and disruption vary. Each episode is a unique and ever-changing combination of depression, anxiety, and panic attacks... making it a moving target to identify and manage.
I've been in a depressive cycle for nearly 4 years. There have been moments of sheer beauty and joy, but the lows have been just as impressive as the highs.
Depression does its best to push those positive moments out of my memory, while latching on to the painful ones. I'm doing my best to allow the space to grieve the losses and experience the joys, both with the intensity that shows up.
I seem to have more recently turned a corner to experiencing the deep lows, but the highs feel dampened. This may be partly due to deep sadness and grief stacking atop the depression. It's too heavy.
I'm so tired and weary. The daily battles feel like a permanent fixture in my life.
I'm not sure how to get through all of this... but, there is no other way but through.
Update: I wrote the above some number of months ago.
There have been ebbs and flows to my experience of depression. Sometimes, depression is in the background and things don't feel quite as heavy and dark. Other times, there's a sense of emptiness and it feels like there's a blanket over everything. It takes a lot of hard work and energy to try to allow and accept even the difficult moments. I'm trying.
"I’ve managed to live with and through Depression before and can do it again. And that is a truth Depression cannot dispel." - Marie Shanley (Mxiety)