Depression is hard to simply explain. Depression is something that casts a dark cloud that will block any view that may be ahead. It will consume your mind, your each breath and drain you of any energy you once had. Depression throws you down a deep dark tunnel with no food, water, barely any air to breathe and closes off the only exit with a mountain of darkness leaving you no escape. It will have you feeling as though you’re the only person on an island far from civilization. And I’m not talking some sweet get-away island. I’m talking a place where it’s constantly cold, dark, rainy and horrid.
Living with depression is something that I wish no one ever had to do. As someone who lives with it, I know how hard each day can be. For years, I have had no drive, no vision of anything in my life. I have absolutely no clue what may be before me for this cloud has consumed me and doesn’t allow me to see ahead. And once you slip into this dark hole, it’s hard to hold yourself up, and extremely hard to come completely out of it. There are days, there will always be days, that are good where you can laugh and smile but then there are days that are awful leaving you curled up in your bed wanting to die.
When you see others happy and out living, you can’t understand why you feel so drained and weighed down, unable to get up, move, and be happy too. Laughing at little things is a difficult without faking it. Genuinely smiling from happiness seems foreign and it’s not something you choose. Sure, you can tell yourself to be happy and smile but with depression inside, everything, every thought, every breathe, you’re hearing things that tell you otherwise. “You’re pathetic, there’s nothing good about you, no one really loves you, why are you even breathing…”
If you are someone who hasn’t gone through depression or doesn’t have any empathy, you may not ever understand truly how hard it is. People will tell those suffering to suck it up, get over it, or to just do this or that. It’s not that simple. If it were, there wouldn’t be as many people suffering each day.
There’s a difference between being sad and being depressed. Though from an outside perspective they may seem similar, they are in fact different. Depression isn’t something that will come and go in a way that sadness can. Depression is something that never leaves. As I said, sure, there may be days where you can smile, but depression is deep down under your skin, draining you of energy and whispering darkness to you as you try to smile and laugh with friends.
Death is a thought that comes and goes often. Suicide seems like an escape, a way out. It is rare for me to not have a day that I wished for a button to press to disappear *poof* or times where I think to myself, “I’m okay if some accident happens and I die from it but those that I love live”. I know that I am not alone with this feeling, these thoughts, and that frightens me.
I know that I have had some morbid thoughts and have done some stupid things to myself to try to not feel this, but knowing that others feel this way, that others want to take their lives because of depression and that some have taken their own lives, breaks my heart. I know that I haven’t attempted to take my own life because I know how much pain that would bring to the people that matter most. I know how absolutely horrible it would be for those I love to live the rest of their lives blaming themselves, asking if they could have done something, knowing that they didn’t save me, and that I’m no longer there. No longer there for them to talk to, to hear my voice, to touch, to hold…
Death is permanent. There are people fighting each and every day to keep living, to keep breathing and pushing on. I could never allow myself to be so selfish and take my own life while I know that my own father fought each and every day for 57+ years to live when he could have given up at any moment.
(For those of you who don’t know me or parts of my story, my father passed away over a year ago at the age of 69 after living a life filled with love while dealing with many heart and health problems – he is a huge part of me and always will be)
I know that a step to coming out of the darkness is to open my heart, allow others to see into my soul and accept help. There are many people who struggle with me, fighting through different battles but raging through the same war. We are all together and should not give up because of the darkness that surrounds us. It may consume us for the time, it may keep us down, and though it may seem like there’s no escape, no end, there is and we are strong enough to pull through, to keep pushing on and live. One thing my dad always told me growing up, one thing I shall carry with me (along with the many things he has taught me) is something I hope you too can hear and carry with you: our minds are the most powerful thing we have and control. Don’t waste it, take control of that beautiful mind and use it to the best of your abilities.
[Image from here]