Say Hello To My Little Friend.WHY DEPRESSION IS THE SUCKIEST ACQUAINTANCE OF ALL TIME.
I have a friend. Well, he’s not a friend exactly. More of an unruly houseguest who always overstays his welcome. Never announces he’s coming. Always leaves the place a mess. His name is depression, & he’s a pain in the arse.
In fact, I wish I could **** him off entirely. But unfortunately, due to my brain’s clumsy approach to biochemistry (I was never good at maths - clearly the neurons in charge of making my serotonin aren’t either) & a heady mix of social & psychological factors, he’s usually hovering somewhere in the background, like some evil & unfunny photobomber, even when he’s not on an official house call.
To put it mildly, he’s a *****. He’s made me cry. He’s made me hate myself. He sucks the energy from my limbs & the concentration from my head. He’s made me lie in bed for days, unwashed, uninterested in food, sex, friends, family, while my mind rides a horrible carousel of self-repraoch & despair; a slowly spinning circle of negative thoughts with no off switch & no clear exit. Bills go unpaid, dishes go unwashed, phone calls go unanswered. The rest of the world slips away & it’s only him & me. Or, really, zombie-me. Smelly, slow-moving, hardly capable of speech. Moaning quietly to myself & probably wearing last week’s pyjamas.
Sometimes there will be an event heralding his arrival. A break-up. Job stress. A big bl
As I’ve gotten older i’ve gotten better at monitoring his approach; better at barring the way before he can get his foot in the door. i’ve set up a sort of internal neighbourhood watch scheme for errant mental disorders, where eternal vigilance is the price of not feeling ******. So I keep an eye out for early symptoms & try to get a jump on them when I can. Mostly it’s the boring stuff that helps; the kind of things you should be doing all the time, but somehow seem to slip off the to-do list when you’re head-down, bum-up living life. Exercise. A well-balanced diet. Going to bed at the same time every night. Seeing friends. Getting fresh air. Smiling & laughing & doing good.
But my magic bullets don’t work every time. & then heavier artillery is needed to send him packing. So I lob little white pills at him, shut my eyes & hope he goes away. It isn’t always an instant victory. but so far I’ve had more wins than losses. The losses seem to drag on for bloody ever, though. Until they don’t. Until my little bodysnatching friend finally gets the message that he’s not welcome & leaves me alone for a while.
Like some horror movie phantom, he needs to be ousted again & again. But the interludes between his visits keep getting longer & I am getting better at being my own Buffy - slaying this personal demon & sending him packing every time. I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to bury him completely. Maybe one day I’ll be able to dance on his grave. Until then, I’ll ride the highs & the lows, appreciating the good times & knowing the bad ones can’t last forever. i am bigger & stronger than him. He just doesn’t know it yet.