Depression is like a hurricane. The kind that swirls around angrily, has a eye in the middle and just makes a huge mess of everything. They can be seen coming but the full scope of the danger is never really, fully known. How disastrous it will be or if it will die out before it does any harm is just a guessing game
For me, this is what depression is like. It comes at me from a distance and I can see it. I know it’s there. So I buckle down and get ready for for the ride. I’ll attempt some preparation and even a little bit of prevention if I can.
Then it hits. It sucks but I knew it was coming (due to a situation or changes or extreme circumstances that cause it) so I’m not all that surprised. I continue to hold on and just wait it out, weathering it like a champ.
After a while I start to feel relief. The sun peeks out and I suddenly feel better. The winds have died down and I let go. I stand up and stretch. I’m tired. My body aches, my head hurts and my heart is broken at the sight of the wreckage left behind.
But I’m alive. I’ve survived.
“Ahhhh!! It feels so good not to feel blue or down anymore! It looks like the storm has passed. Welp! On to life as it was!” I say to myself.
But here is where I make my mistake. I get to the eye of the storm and start to feel relief. I test the waters with my little toe and find them to be calm and cool. So, what do I do? I start to rebuild and work on making things better. Fixing and throwing away things damaged in the storm.
Never once do I look back but I keep moving forward, fixing and rebuilding to clear a new path in front of me. But, little do I notice that it’s not over just yet. I have a little more to weather before life can start over.
That’s when the other side of the storm swirls around and slams into me, harder this time than before due to my lack of preparation. For some reason, I’m never ready for this. For some reason, I always think the eye of the storm is truly the end of the deep down, dark feelings of sadness and loss.
Maybe I’m too optimistic. Or maybe I’m just that naive.
I think that I desire relief so badly that I blindly go into the eye of the storm and begin the clean up. I think I want to feel better SO badly that I forget there is a second part to this depression. That there is another side to this shit storm. That it not over yet.
So here I am, knocked on my ass by the second half of the storm. Everything I had done or worked on to repair is once again broken. All that hard work was for nothing as I scurry to cling for support as the winds whip around me and I just try to survive.
That is where I am currently. I’ve been struggling since the new year (and maybe before?) with signs of depression. It was a slow progression but I was down, nonetheless. Feeling apathetic, sad, and at times lonely in my gloom.
Then my life did a 180. Things, BIG THINGS, changed for me, sending me down a different path than I had planned. At the time I was medicated for my PMDD so I don’t think I really felt anything deeply. So I weathered the first half in a dull, zoned out kind of way.
I can’t tell you when but I did see the eye of the storm. I saw the sun break through the clouds and it stopped raining for a moment. And in that time, I felt better, more alive and positive that things were changing for the better. So I jumped up, gathered my tools and began rebuilding.
As you can guess, the second half of this hurricane has officially hit.
At first, I was so turned around and flustered, I couldn’t figure out what was happening. Why was I sad again!? I thought things were getting better! What was going on?
Then I thought about it and realized I still had to deal with this. I still needed to survive and get to the other side. The eye of the storm was only a brief time-out. Like a little reminder of what it’s like to feel good. A reminder that I am capable and strong. A reminder to keep holding on and weather the rest of this. A little sneak peek at how good it will be.
It will be over soon, the eye of the storm says. You made it this far, now just hang on and get through this last bit.
So, here I am. Still struggling. Still depressed. Still asking “Why me?!” questions and still crying over my losses and my heartache. I’m tired and drained. I feel like I can’t do it anymore. Like I don’t have it in me to find out how good it will be once this storm passes. I just kinda want to sit down and live in this hurricane rather than fight through it and live in sunny days.
But, if the eye of the storm is right, I’m strong. I’m capable. I’ve made it this far. So, I can’t give up.
I just need to keep on going and care for myself with the gentlest of words and with the utmost self-care. I have a lot of good coming my way. I just have to hang on and weather this last bit.
They always say, it gets worse before it gets better.
Let’s hope so.