I Suffer From Depression
Take a good look at the picture of the person that you see. Does she look depressed? Is she sad? Does she look like someone who at times begged God for her life to end? If you answered "NO" to any of these questions, then you are 100% inccorect because the answer is "YES."
You see that person in the picture is me. For many years I have suffered from clinical depression. I don't have a reason for my illness. It is just part of who I am. The reason that I am writing this article today is to discribe depression from one person's point of view. This is my story. It may not fit the symptoms and experiences of other patients; however, my story may help someone that is clinically depressed feel less alone. And, if you do not suffer from depression, chances are good that someone you love is probably suffering.
What Depression Means To Me
There are so many artcles defining what we call depression, but I don't want to deal in labels. This is depression through my eyes and my eyes only. To me depression is a fight with an unwelcome "guest". I never know when this "guest" is going to visit me, but when she does, I am never prepared.
Yes, I take medication. It is not a perfect cure like the television commercials promise. I wish I could take a pill that will promise sunshine and roses, but a pill of this nature simply does not exist. However, I can take a pill that helps keep the sadness at bay so that the "guest" visits a little less frequently.
When she does enter my life, I see total darkness. I am considered high-functioning, so I go to work and try to get through the day the best that I can. It is when I am alone that the horror of depression sets in, and I really suffer.
Durring these times, I cry. Now, the mere act of crying does not indicate depression. Sometimes a good cry is healing to the soul and spirit. However, when I cry it is for hours at a time. I cannot stop and I cannot verbalize the reason for my tears. I lock myself away from the world and refuse to talk to others. I push away those who mean the most to me. My life becomes pointless. I am tired, and I hurt. I cannot make these episodes to go away.
Simply stated, depression is hell on earth.
What Does My Story Have To Do With You?
To me, depression may be hell on earth, but the illness does not run my life. I refuse to let the illness take me away. There have been many times in my life when depression almost beat me in the game of life and it will challenge me again many, many times in the future. However, I will try to face my demons each day with courage. But, what does my story have to do with you? Why should you care about my personal battles?
Well, if you are reading this article you are curious about clinical depression. Perhaps you or someone that you love is suffering the same way that I suffer. If this is true, please keep reading.
If you or someone that you know is suffering, here is some advice.
1. Get Help
Everyone feels a little sad from time to time but if the bouts of saddness occur frequently to the point that you life feels out of control, you may be clinically depressed. The problem is not going away on its own. If you try to ignore it, you may try to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol. Take it from me, drugs and alcohol don't work. Instead, the act of self-medication creates a new type of problem. Remember, it is OK to ask for help. Asking for help is not a sign of weekness. It is a sign of courage.
2. Eat Healthy
I am a firm believer that you diet can affect your mood. If you find that you are eating foods that are loaded with preservatives and sugars, try adding more plant-based foods to your diet. Think of bright colors when you start adding vegtables to your diet. The more the merrier.
Exercise is important to the overall functing of our bodies. However, we neglect the importance of exercise to our mood. Get outside and take a walk. Spend ten-to-twenty minutes in the sunshine and see what happens!
4. Get Spiritual, Volunteer, Paint, Write, Sculpt...
The list is endless, but the point is that you need to find your passion. Connecting with something greater than you or helping someone in need is very theraputic. Artistic endeavors are great ways to express emotions that are often difficult to articulate. Sometimes you have to try different things to find the right medium. But when you do. You will know it.
This is my story. I hope it helps. I don't know the cure and I don't have all of the answers. However, I know what depression feels like, and that's a start.