I'm on a writing binge. I don't know why...but I suddenly have so many things that I want to talk about...and feel the need to get out faster than my fingers can type. There is one specific topic on my mind right now...and it's depression.
This is always hard for me to admit, because I pride myself in being as strong as humanly possible. Even when it's unlikely. But I'm fighting depression like all hell lately. It's an inner battle that no one can see, and probably doesn't notice. Typically, I'd go on medication for awhile until it was under control...and then slowly take myself off it. But the last time I decided that I was done, and just stopped taking it. That was almost two and a half years ago...and I've loved not having to depend on medication to keep me going.
That being said...depression does this strange thing where it comes in and out for seemingly no reason at all. My life is better right now than it has been in years. Nick is home safely, we have a beautiful home, wonderful jobs, I'm finally bonding with his daughter...we've spent the last two weeks traveling...things are really amazing. Yet, there is an ache in my chest lately that I can't shake off. There are some things going on...and a lot of changes have taken place...but essentially there is no "reason" for these feelings.
Luckily I've learned how to fight it all. I've learned how to shut certain feelings out, and process them only when I have the time to. It doesn't affect my relationships because I refuse to let it. But it gets harder every day to function. My sleep starts to be affected...and I have to say I haven't slept more than an hour or two for the last two nights.
Little things get overwhelming easily. Small sad things...physically hurt. It's hard to explain what I mean by that...but it's a mental and physical ache that is exhausting to deal with. You feel completely alone, when you're not at all. There are moments where all you want is someone to be there...but at the same second you want to push everyone away completely because you feel stronger on your own.
It doesn't make a damn bit of sense most of the time. It makes you feel like less of a person, or like you're being overly sensitive to stupid things. But it's not something that you can make disappear. It's frustrating when everything around you is amazing, but you're crying yourself to sleep at night over nothing.
I'm trying to make changes in my life right now. Some that are insanely difficult, and involve people that have been around longer than most. But they are changes that I have to make for my sanity. I can't be taking care of other people anymore. I just can't do it. My energy level isn't there, and I can't let my relationships with others make my life harder. It's hard enough to begin with.
I'm also trying to find some faith in little things. My boss is not one that gives out compliments often...and lately he's been giving me a lot of compliments and thanking me (which again...is not something he does). He walked into my office today and asked if I would have some things done for him by tomorrow because he was leaving...and before I could answer, he answered for me. His response "Wait of course you will...you haven't dropped the ball yet!" And then he told me to have a good night, and to leave whenever I felt I was ready.
I'm so blessed. Even with the crappy things in life, I'm blessed beyond compare. I've seen some things that no one should. I've experienced situations that changed my life, and will continue to influence me for the rest of my days. This depression and anxiety is one of them.
It doesn't make me less of a person. It doesn't make me less capable of handling things. It doesn't mean that anyone needs to walk on eggshells or try and "protect" me...actually for the love of my sanity please don't. Part of my ability to fight this is the power I get from pushing through issues and taking care of myself. I work better under pressure.
However, I do need understanding sometimes. There are moments where getting out of bed is a fight, and where not letting little things get to me is nearly impossible. I need people to educate themselves on depression. Not just for me...but because 1 out of every 5 young adults right now is fighting depression. So look around at your friends. Pick 4 of them. If it's not you...there's a good chance one of them is fighting it.
Be patient. Be kind. Love on people all the time. Back off if they ask you to.