If you know me at all, you know I am very open about a lot of things in my life. I don’t like a silent struggle I want to be open so others know what is going on. I don’t like that I’ve had to struggle silently lately about many things. I am ready to be open about one, my depression.
Depression is different for a lot of people, I know that. My depression can get to the point where it is debilitating. I don’t even want to get up in the morning. My body hurts, I’m tired but I can’t sleep, and I’m not hungry. The only reason I get out of bed is because of the kids, I know that their lives depend on me. I have to pull myself up to do therapy for the boys that they need to live normal lives. I have to pull myself up so that I can get the girls to whatever extra curricular activity they need to get to. I need to pull myself up because my family needs me, but sometimes it can be so hard. Sometimes I just want to sit and cry. When I’m this far into my depression I sit on the couch a lot. It hurts to sit because of an injury to my back but it hurts to stand as well so I sit. I tend to watch TV, it is a good way to get myself out of my current reality and into the world, but I know it is not the world. Things get blurry, not in a seeing sense but in my mind things that I was pretty sure I did, I didn’t. Papers that I thought I signed and sent back to school are still sitting on the counter and I can’t even find them when they are out in the open. I don’t remember things as I should, dates get mixed up and most times I can’t even tell you what day of the week or month it is. I have to spend most of my energy just in trying to remember certain things that I need to. I can’t concentrate on what I need to do most times.
I have a cadence in my head. A cadence of negative comments that tend to get louder and louder each passing day. It has my ex-husband telling me that if I was going to be the mom he didn’t want kids, him telling me I was ugly, stupid and fat. It has what kids used to say to me in elementary, middle school and high school. It has things that my parents have said when they were disappointed in me for some reason. It has the feelings that come with it when I have let someone I care about down, the feeling I get when I have broken a rule, a really sinking feeling. My oldest brother used to make fun of me constantly and my parents told me that was his way of showing his love, it probably was but it hurt when all I would hear at school was hurtful things as well. The cadence reminds me of painful times like when my best friend got mad at me in High School. It reminds me of when I goofed up two years ago at a performance and froze in front of a room full of people not being able to properly pronounce a name that I had practiced time and time again. It reminds me of every time I have screwed up, of every time I have made a mistake and it repeats how useless I am. I was an atheist for a lot of my life simply because I felt like if God knew who I really was he would reject me so to save myself from the heart ache I rejected that he even existed. I couldn’t believe that God could love me just simply for being me when there was nothing whatsoever to love about me. After I found God I talked about Him all the time because I felt like to one person I was perfect, but the world has a funny way of taking that security. I was made fun of so I stopped talking about God and in doing so I felt like I disappointed Him, only adding to the cadence. But in a weird way the pain from those close to me making fun of me was more than the grief of disappointing God- I know a “of this world” problem that I failed, adding to my cadence. The days where my cadence is strong I can’t do much, I have trouble even finding the energy to go to the store for diapers. I will make any excuse not to go anywhere and only do what I have to do. I don’t feel like doing anything at all, but I will make myself do things I need to.
I long for acceptance, for approval. My depression and low self worth bring me into a very vulnerable place. I don’t know why but all of my life people haven’t thought I ever needed approval. I haven’t had many people being my cheerleader through life, even when I needed it. I’m always searching for constant approval. I search for how others react so that I know how I’m suppose to react. I feel like I will fail if I have an original thought, if I had an original idea. I drain those close to me because I am always asking for acceptance. I don’t usually open up completely to many people and after I do I back off because I know I am a person of many needs and I can get very overwhelming. But sometimes I long for that person that can actually handle me that doesn’t get overwhelmed. I felt so loved by the man who raped me, that was my reason for going back. That was the one time in my life where I felt completely loved he complimented me constantly and knew exactly what to say to a depressed teenage girl. He sent me flowers on Valentines day, he constantly told me how beautiful I was or how smart, etc. What a warped sense of love but I craved that, I wanted that feeling that someone loved me even if I was overwhelming. I don’t even get that feeling of love from my current husband. It is not his fault, looking at it from a psychological stand point my husband would be diagnosed with aspergers in a heart beat if it still existed. He doesn’t give me approval because he doesn’t understand how anyone would need it. He does find me overwhelming because I’m emotional and he doesn’t understand why I am. He is about as emotional as a 2×4 and it isn’t his fault but it doesn’t help my situation. For 11 years I have sat back and tried to warp myself into what he though I should be and that has only added to my issues because I have lost part of myself. But my husband is trying to understand and that helps in a way.
I feel for Robin Williams, the cadence can get pretty loud at times and no matter how many people you help or how many people tell you they like you or admire you there are still equal numbers to how many people tell you you are doing everything wrong even when they are saying it in love the cadence picks it up and repeats it back. I don’t know what exactly he went through, I can’t pretend to know. But if it was anything like I go through on a daily basis I feel for him.
Medicine doesn’t help it only covers up a few symptoms. Stress adds to the strength of the cadence and it is pretty strong lately. Not sleeping adds to the strength of the cadence. When someone says something negative towards me the cadence gets stronger and harder to ignore. The positive I get every once in a while gets completely drown out by the cadence. Sometimes it just comes out of no where as you are sitting with your kids feeling pretty good about yourself and what you have accomplished reminding you of everything you have done wrong of all the things you aren’t and never will be.
It is extremely difficult to talk about my depression, it is difficult to know I just put all this out into the world honest, open and raw so that others can see it especially when I’m right in the deep dark depths of depression. It seems like a very dangerous weapon to just hand out knowing others can hurt me with it. But I know this is not a battle I face alone, nor is it a battle I can win alone because I’m worn. But I know it is a battle that can be won,