Most of my friends are on Facebook, all over the world. I came across this post from my friend Lisa, who also struggles with depression:
One of the things that is so incredibly frustrating about depression is the inability to trust the good days, because you know damn well that tomorrow could go right in the shitter. So you take advantage of those good days, hopefully building up a momentum that will carry you forward.
It’s not *all* chemical, but my particular flavor of depression is largely chemical, so I am doing what I can, every day, to keep the good chemical levels up. I’m getting sun, journaling, taking vitamin D, working, and allowing myself to just BE.
One of the things that I’ve found is really helping me in a BIG way is a playlist that I’ve created on Spotify. I’ve entitled it “Happy”. It’s made up of songs that just make me feel good, have great memories, etc. I have been listening to it every morning, and it lifts me up and gets the dopamine flowin’.
Yesterday, I realized that I am likely conditioning myself to FEEL happy when this playlist is played. So I may very well be able to utilize that as a pattern interrupt when my next bad day hits (and I’m hoping it’s a long, LONG way away).
Just some varied thoughts on how to cope with depression, if you’re prone to it.
I have had depression and anxiety for years. Part of dealing with both of these things is that they feed themselves: you beat yourself up because you feel like you ought to be able to kick this, but you can’t without help, ergo, you feel like a failure, etc, rinse and repeat.
Something yesterday that made me feel better:
1) watching a couple skits from the London 2012 Opening Ceremonies (Rowan Atkinson as Mr Bean; Daniel Craig as James Bond escorting Her Maj to the ceremonies)
2) Something Honey Brooks talked about: making a list of the things you’ve done. It gave me a sense of accomplishment.
I don’t know if I’m ready to publish this list publicly yet. It might take some editing.
The more intelligent you are, the more likely you are to have severe anxiety and depression (whether chemical, situational, a mixture, or whatever). You are trained to over-think things, and unlike most of the unwashed masses, you can’t just “turn your brain off” or “chill the fuck out” (that is, in my case, not without the help of legally-prescribed pharmaceuticals). There is no shame in mental illness.
For me, there is an added element of brain damage that makes the depression/anxiety more infuriating: emotional lability: It’s caused by damage to the brain stem (in my case, cerebral palsy caused it, but you also see it in dementia patients). I cry easily, and it often takes forever for me to stop, especially if people fuss over me. I can’t stop, because of the brain damage. It also infuriates me that I can’t stop, which makes the crying worse. I can’t speak at times like this, so the inability to speak makes me more frustrated. Like I said, it feeds itself.
(Did I mention that writing this blog post started one of these episodes? Not to worry: knitting and a movie will fix me. It’s nobody’s fault – just a fucked-up brain.)
Considering getting some of these babies to aid my communication.
Whenever I talk to people about my depression or anxiety, it usually leads to emotional lability. My therapists are a patient bunch, and good for keeping handy those big legal yellow pads.
Now, if it doesn’t stop in an hour (it did, thankfully), I might take 1mg diazepam. Doctors here in England are really stingy about prescribing benzodiazepines, because they can be psychologically addictive. However, when you can’t bloody communicate, sometimes exceptions have to be made. I don’t lunge for the diazepam straightaway because I don’t like to be fuzzy on it. But if I need it, I’ll use it sparingly.
It’s better than biting your tongue so hard it bleeds, right?