Dark days

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On the 14th, a dark cloud came above my head and it all started again. The depression phase comes back to haunt me and I desperately try to do all I can to eradicate it from my mind.

I try to push it out with thoughts and focusing on something else as quick as I can but I’m not quick enough. I was at work at the time and it was a usual Thursday morning, but for the demons, it was feasting time and my poor little thoughts were the target food; they had their knives and forks at the ready and were chanting at my mind’s dinner table.

I immediately sent an email to my regional manager and informed him of my state. It’s never easy telling someone face-to-face what this is like because it’s indescribable. You are not sad, you are not miserable, and there’s one thing for sure, you just can’t help yourself and ‘snap out of it’.

I immediately booked myself off work because I knew what was to come. You can’t focus, you can’t read, you can’t think, you can’t perform basic human tasks and especially those which are required for a retail career. As for providing great customer service; you simply can not do this, not because you don’t want to, but it’s almost like your brain forgets ‘how’.

On previous occasions of this bastard illness, I would spend weeks off work doing very little and curling into a little ball and feeling ever-so helpless. There would be days I would sit on the sofa and stare into the sky. Normally, you would look at the beautiful patterns of the clouds, listen to the birds chirping, the leaves rustling, goings on and happenings of the local neighbourhood… literally, this all stops with depression.

Imagine staring into the sky and not feeling, thinking, seeing, smelling, hearing anything – Almost senseless. That’s probably the best way to describe when I look out of the window. As I do it now (as I write this blog) I have a similar feeling but as it’s now been 10 days, some of those senses start to come back as I start to get better. I hope anyway.

That’s been one of the many feelings I have had this week. I am not going to state them all, because there are too many. I want people who may be going through the same thing as I am, to understand that other people know exactly what this is like. It’s horrible. It’s devastating. It’s soul-destroying at times… but it does pass. It’s a just of matter of when.

Today feels like a better day. I still have the dark cloud above my head, but it’s almost as if the sun is bursting through and the little rays of sunshine are starting to shine upon the land beneath – I’m hoping that makes sense because it does in my head!

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The other main feeling from this week has been a sense of emptiness and it leads onto questioning your own existence. Now, to some people, this will seem so very strange / weird / odd – Whatever they want to call it, but you know what, it just shows their ignorance. These are the people who want you to ‘pull your socks up’ & ‘snap out of it’.

If somebody walks down the street and is sneezing, coughing and spluttering – They are ill – Their symptoms are physical and you can see them. The only reason these ignorant people don’t question them on their illness and tell them to buck their ideas up is because they can see whats going on. I’m sure if they could see what was going on in a depressed person’s mind they would be astonished.

I want to make a clear point here. This leads on from depression and the possible outcomes of the illness.

From my experience, I think the only reason people take their own lives is because these feelings can be so overwhelming at times and the individual feels that there is no other option.

Yes, is the answer to your next question. Have I ever thought about doing it?

Of course. I bet you a lot of us have thought about doing it at some point in our lives. Think back to a low point in your own life and remember how you felt? Did you feel sad? Lonely? Depressed? No way out? Embarrassed to talk to someone?

There is always a reason though and people don’t realise that. Yes, I think it is selfish to end your own life, but I also know what it’s like to be on the receiving end of depression. The feelings of emptiness, loneliness and self-existence become so over whelming, it sometimes feels like there is no other choice.

99.9999% of us would not commit suicide for fun, maybe even 100% – Admitting that you have a problem with depression is extremely hard, but it’s a strong move and one in the right direction. I feel I have only just started to make progress and I am 30-years old. Yes, I have suffered with this for 10 years – But I have forever been brushing it off and labelling it as ‘I’ll be ok’ and carrying on with normal life. Well I wasn’t ok. Life wasn’t normal and now I need help.

There again, what is ‘normal’ life? It’s sad to say but I have become used to getting periods of being very low and in a depressive state, so used to it that I now describe being ‘normal’ as not having it. What a powerful illness it is. It completely takes over your mind, life and everything you have ever known or loved. Thankfully for me it doesn’t usually last that long and I have managed to control it, just.

This isn’t a cry for help because I have made positive steps in the right direction, but I would always like to hear from like-minded people whether or not they have beaten depression or currently battling it.

‘There is always someone to talk to’ – Quite a controversial cliché from the world of mental illness, in my opinion. This is true, well, it’s a fact. There is and there always will be. I know this too because of what I have been though myself.

The frustrating thing is, when you are in the depression, you don’t want to talk to anyone. You still have to lift up your phone and make the call, you still have to drive to a place where you feel comfortable and speak to someone.

I find it ever-so-hard to look someone in the face and especially in the eyes, so God knows how some people can make that all-so important call, visitation to a friend or even a family members’ house.


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