Other than the inconvenient annoyance of having depression itself, one of the things I struggle with is the obvious stigma attached to depression. I think it’s important to be honest about my depression, I am not proud of it, but I certainly find no shame in it either. It simply is. Depression isn’t something I seek attention for, but it isn’t something I should have to hide either. I took a pill everyday, one little copper colored pill—every single day. I have been taking it for over ten years. The issue is, this particular drug can loss effectiveness over time, which it seems to have done in my case.
I recently returned to a psychiatrist for the first time since I was eighteen and initially diagnosed. Admitting I need to see some sort of brain behavioral specialist is disheartening to say the least. The knowledge one has to go beyond herself for the ability to simply be normal, and respond to the simple stimulus of being alive like an average person, is difficult to face. Let alone the entire process of finding a new medication. I dread the idea of finding a new medication. I suppose I can’t be surprised my medication had become less effective after ten years.
I had my turning point several months ago, when the ordinary feeling of impending sadness turned into a genuinely (literally) debilitating sadness. I found myself curled up on the sofa unable to move, unable to speak. It was terrifying. I was conscious. I was fully aware that I wanted to move, to speak, to react to my husbands obvious concern, but I could only curl into a tighter ball with tears slowly streaming down my face. My mind screamed out that I just needed to explain, “I know I’m being weird. I don’t know why, but I just feel heavy. I just feel sad, everything—existing is just too much”. That had never happened to me before. It seemed to be a fairly obvious sign that my current mental state was inadequate at best, and I needed to step out of my comfort zone in order to take care of myself and get healthy. I’m not healthy yet, but I am trying.
My new psychiatrist diagnosed me with neurotic depression and anxiety. Depression is difficult to describe because it isn’t a tangible illness. I think the same thing to myself that skeptical people do—just be happy. Stop being weird, why are you so sad? What do you have to be sad about? So many people have life far worse, but their silver lining only makes me feel worse—only makes me feel like more of a waste of human life. Someone else given this life could have done so much more, could have been better and have achieved something. My life lived by someone else, they could have been happy. Not this broken attempt at living, I currently am.
Some people don’t real get that depression is indeed a real thing, my brain doesn’t make the right amount of the correct chemicals for me to act and respond to life like a normal functional human being. Granted, I’m sure some doctors are far too quick to prescribe medication, but I know I am a person who does need medication. And I have started the monthly-interval process of finding the new medication that helps take me out of my head. I’m not good at being happy. Not that I don’t want to be happy. Who doesn’t want to be happy? Being happy is awesome. My brain chemicals don’t make happiness my default (or even a commonly visited) state of mind, which is inconvenient for being alive.
I try not to think about my depression much. For obvious reasons, if I ignore that figurative looming dark cloud it is bound to go away, right? Well, probably not. Actually, no, for sure not. It looms and expands and seems to take over my being some days. I turn into someone I don’t even want to be around. I feel like I’m heavy and melting, cracking apart at the same time, like a cooling lava flow. But less scalding hot and dangerous, and more weird and in my head.
So I guess, my point is, why has my blog seem to have fallen behind? Because I’m struggling with life. Sorry for that. For anyone kind enough to take an interest in my artwork, or me this is—regrettably a part of me. A part of me I am working on making better. I am working on getting healthier. But it takes time.