The longest relationship I’ve ever been in has been with my depression. Which pisses me off because I want to scream from the rooftops that it gets better and that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel for everybody else, but here I am, lying in bed at 6:30 am, staring at the ceiling, trying to psych myself up for another day of the mundane. The older I get, the more my depression feels like a chronic illness than a curable disease.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suicidal. I’m not nearly as bad as I used to be. I think I might have finally learned to deal with it, and I can go for periods where it’s not an issue at all, but then one morning I’ll wake up and feel exhausted despite just sleeping for a solid 8 hours. My whole body feels heavy. When I notice that I feel detached from my body, then I realize what’s happening.
Oh hey. I was wondering if you were going to show up again.
It’s partially situational. When I start to lose a firm grip on my life, that lack of purpose triggers my depression to stick its head out and greet me.
I’m experiencing a lot of existential dread lately. A lot of “What the fuck is the point?” type of thinking. Again, not suicidal, just nihilistic. Which isn’t me at all. I’m the glowing optimist that proclaims that everything happens for a reason and everyone has a purpose. But when I feel detached from myself, I lose that thinking. It feels more like I’m on autopilot and have no real control over my life. I fall down a rabbit hole filled with sleeping entire days that I don’t have to be at work and drinking a lot, because nothing matters and we’re all going to die someday anyway.
The drinking tipped me off that I was really starting to slide back down again. I disregard my weekend drinking when I’m being social and having fun, but drinking during the week is usually a sign that I need to administer some ~self-care~.
I still have yet to learn what self-care is for me. It sure as hell isn’t bubble baths and yoga retreats. Usually it’s going for a walk with my dog, blasting stupid happy music, trying to get myself to feel literally anything other than the void of darkness that is creeping into my mind.
It’s exhausting to fight it back into submission. I’ve been doing this pretty much my entire life, and it is fucking exhausting. But the good days are finally more common than the bad, and what happens on those good days is 100% worth sticking around for.
See, there’s that glowing optimist making an appearance again. I’m not totally dead inside.
Not yet, at least.