Depression returns

Mavilette Beach in fog

All I know is that I want to stop feeling like I cannot focus on anything. I want to stop chasing rainbows. I want to stop experiencing pain. I want to go to bed, fall asleep, and wake in the morning feeling rested. I want to accept things for what they are, not something far bigger and insurmountable. I want to feel motivated to get out and do things that I love. I want to be fit. I want to sit and read a book for more than ten minutes at a time. And I want other things that I don’t feel so comfortable sharing here.

I want to care about things deeply, not just logically.


I originally wrote these words in December 2010. It wasn’t the last time I had such thoughts.

It has come back in cycles surrounding the anniversary of my mother’s death, though I think that’s more of a trigger than a cause. Most recently, I felt a rather intense disconnect and low in December (2014).

I am working on improving my state of mind. But due to a strained situation and some ongoing pain (both physically and emotionally) I found myself feeling depressed. I felt no desire. No real feeling of connection to anything. A sense of apathy. No appetite. And to be honest I just felt like I was on the verge of tears periodically throughout the day. It is by no means over, but I think I have begun traveling the path of healing.

I made an appointment to see a therapist. I went back to my previous therapist in the interim. I started a new fitness program in the hopes of getting back in shape. And I started trying to take small bites out of the straining situation(s) that feel far beyond my control. There is really no worse feeling than that of being trapped in a situation, and so I attempt to make what small choices I can. I know that the only way for me to get “un-stuck” is to try to make small changes and do new things.


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I have attempted to take back some of the activities that I love, from reading to photography. I started something “new” – I picked up an old saxophone, special thanks to old friends, and intend to re-learn something I knew how to do nearly 25 years ago.

My fitness program is a video series with a set schedule. I chose the least intense program offered in efforts not to cause a flare-up of my chronic pain. I have allowed myself permission to adapt the program. If I try to follow someone else’s idea of taking it easy, I will likely find myself out of commission for longer again. So I decided that even though the program didn’t call for it, I would allow a break after three days. And when the pain had not subsided enough I allowed myself a second rest day. Tomorrow will be challenging, as I know how hard it is to form a new habit, especially after losing so much headway over the past months (and years even). But I am determined to get back in shape and do so in a way that I can hopefully sustain.

This holiday vacation I managed to read an entire novel in a matter of several days, a feat I haven’t dared imagine in the last two years. I started another book and hope I can make it through this one too.

I am considering seeing my doctor about a prescription, but will wait until I see my new therapist this week. I am not convinced that situational depression necessarily benefits much from chemical treatment. I know it might provide me a bit of a breather to allow the space needed to do the work to get better. I feel like I pushed through the darkness and fog and am moving toward lighter days. But I will leave it to the expert to advise me appropriately.

Once again it is difficult to admit such weakness, although I know in doing so I can increase my chances of getting better sooner. In my experience, sharing – rather than hiding – depression makes it easier for support to become available and for me to accept help.

What do you do to help yourself out of as slump?


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About Trish

family legacy curator, social justice advocate, blogger, amateur photographer, reader, cyclist, runner & swimmer, mom of two