Don't Come Down - an open discussion about "depression"

To me the idea of depression was always pretty black and white. Someone was sad. They would be in a constant state of sadness. So when in one those ridiculously uncomfortable chairs in the doctors and got told ‘you are suffering with depression’ I was confused. I did feel sad sometimes, but I had no idea that what I was feeling was actually depression.

 At its peak getting out of bed and getting into bed are always the hardest. I would wake up and I would hold my eyes closed, wishing that something could keep them that way forever. If I open my eyes - I have to deal with the day. I have had days where it’s 6pm and I’m still lying there; still having the exact same battle. The ironic part of it all is how exhausting it is. I never thought I could physically and emotionally feel so drained simply from trying to make myself exist. When I get out of bed the world is grey. It’s as if everyone around me is functioning and travelling at 100MPH and at my best I’m running at 50. I’m on the same track, I’m being offered the same roads and the same options but I’m always behind. Everything feels like a task. From lifting my foot to take a step, to reaching out and boiling the kettle. It’s as if I have to pause, make the plan of what I’m going to do and then will myself to actually follow through. Again, it’s draining.

 I want to do all of these things, I think. It’s as if my life is in front of me. The blueprints are right there. My job title, the keys of my house, my purse and favorite shoes by the door. But it’s all just about out of my reach. But it is there. It sits there. Almost like it’s haunting me. Almost like it’s taunting me. A lot of the time I feel guilty for this. I feel almost like I’m at fault. I get frustrated with MYSELF as if I ever wanted to feel like this, as if I ever asked for my heart to race so fast that it hurts. I stand in shopping centres, I stand on my local roads, I lie in bed - and just as I’m about to slip into one of these moments of darkness and instead of stopping and thinking ‘it’s okay you can get through this’ - I think ‘here you are, failing again. Falling again’. That on top of the weight of depression is crippling. Suffocating. Debilitating.

 Conversations feel like war. You tell me about how your boyfriend made a crude joke over drinks last night, you tell me your boss is a dick. I’m taking it all in. I’m listening I swear - but none of it is making any sense. It’s like you are speaking in tongue. Then the dreaded question. You ask me how I am, how I’m doing. If I feel better. Sometimes I think people treat depression as if I’ve a cold. ‘How are you feeling today Kellyhope, any better after taking that dose of tablets’. I know it’s coming from a good place. When I have retrospect on my side I know why and how you are thinking. But in the moment, under the pressure - that simple little question can make me feel like I’m not able to breathe. My airway is blocked and I feel like nothing is coming in. Nothing is coming out. One question. One simple question.

 At night I lie in bed and “fight” etc. through what I call the regret hours. I lie in bed and I instantly start counting how many hours I have till I have to start my day again. Eight hours tonight, maybe ten. That’s plenty time to lie in bed and examine my wooden ceiling - and regret every move my body has ever made. Regret every breath I’ve ever taken. It’s the hours where I panic, the hours where I cry. The hours where I feel most alone. Sometimes I feel like I’m crazy. Sometimes I feel like I’m never going to be able to find myself again.

Eventually I wear myself out and I finally get to sleep. My power button is hit and then the nightmares start. They’ve been move vivid since I started medication. Drowning. The recurring dream of being out at sea my body being pulled down into the ocean. I’m tired. My voice is gone. I can barely move my arms to stop the waves from taking me under. In that moment I look towards the sky and I give in.

PS. This was in no way meant to come across as a cry for help or asking for attention. I personally am very embarrassed and I'll even use the word 'ashamed' to discuss this topic with people I know, never mind as publicly as I just did by posting this; but I am using my words and my voice now because I can't let it have power over me anymore. If the one part of this I can control is how it defines me, then I'll take that control.

If any of you ever need to talk, I'm not a trained professional; but as my friends would tell you I'm non judgemental and a good listener.

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Be careful with the words you use, remember - they can hold a lot of weight. Feedback is always welcomed and appreciated x

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