My Experience with Depression
Over two years ago I sat in my doctor's office filled with little to no hope, an overwhelming feeling of dread and a fear unlike any I had ever felt before. As she sat me down and asked me the questions, I had asked so many of clients before I knew what was to come. She sealed our meeting with a hug and then handed me my prescription.
I never thought to seek assistance for the way that I was feeling. I continuously pushed my mental wellness to the side because I am #thestrongfriend. I would write, I would practice self-care, I would cry, I would meditate, I would use every tool I had in my tool kit. It’s not that they didn’t work but the feelings, fears and thoughts never stayed away long enough.
I would find myself in puddles of tears questioning my life, my purpose, my reason, my why’s, my existence. Until one day I found myself unable to keep my customer service face and smile intact. I ran from my work desk to the parking lot and into my car so that the tears that normally came in the quiet of the night could be released. The last thing I wanted was to be seen by my coworkers, drenched in a pool of my own tears, uncontrollably hyperventilating, curled into the fetal position wishing for death to come. It was a moment I feared because it felt as though the pain, I was experiencing was unbearable and the tears would never end.
Speaking to my doctor was the first step, the second step was finding just the right anti-depressant, then finding just the right therapist. I had to forgive myself and allow myself the time to heal. Trial and error, ups and downs, what worked one day didn’t always work the next, but I did not give up, and I am happy that I didn’t. Telling my family and friends was difficult, but those closest to me became a system of support that I did not believe I had.
The thing about depression is that it convinces you that you are alone, that no one will understand you or your thoughts and feelings. It magnifies all of your fears. No matter how many stories you are told that sound or look familiar to yours it is never enough to convince you that the darkness where you currently reside is not your fixed address.
Mental awareness is vital, it is important to check in with yourself. I know its cliche to say but if something is wrong with us physically our first thought is to seek medical attention. We must do our best to have that same reaction when it comes to our mental health. There are various aspects to mental wellness which we will discuss in future blogs. Check out a post on the blog called “The Art of Self-Care" where I list tips for self-care and why self-care is not just a buzzword.
Today is “World Mental Health Day.” A day to share, to encourage, to build more awareness and educate others on various mental health challenges that many people experience. This is my experience and I hope that if you are going through something similar that you continue to fight and reach out to those around you for support.