When we hear people utter the word depression what do we think? That the person is seeking attention? That the 'word' depression is being used "too much" for everything these days, as with ADHD and kids? He's hyper - must be ADHD, when in truth we recognize that there really is something else going on.
When I think or hear the word depression, I dredge up dark days, where emotions ran high, and events that no one could help with haunted my sleepless nights. Of course it can be credited by an illness, a bad relationship, lack of exercise, a bad diet - or it could just be explained as - "I have no idea what is wrong." And that, it where the problem lies.
The first time I felt like "I have no idea what was wrong" was an evening (just like so many other evenings) I was watching my dad shave. As an adult I still find this somewhat mesmerizing, but I digress. He was getting ready for darts, (which at an even younger age got one stuck in my foot, I still have the scar. Our babysitter, Sonia, nearly lost her life when I screamed. Again I digress) Unlike every other time where I would sit on the closed toilet seat watching, as stroke after stroke his face became gradually cleaner, this time I was standing in the doorway of the bathroom, tears streaking my cheeks, lip quivering and he stopped - looked at me and said "Please tell me what's wrong."
"I don't know," I replied, lowering my head I cried.
Following a somewhat strange number of years, where life took turn after turn and upsets became the natural way of life, I found the word 'Depression" knocking on my door yet again. This time what seemed the worst times from the past seemed like nothing in comparison to what I was feeling now. Needless to say the worst thing that could have happen happened, and something that even now I look at as a learning experience. The posters and campaigns of "Just tell someone" always there shadowed by family, friends, open doors, but even then it was never enough.
Some ask why it is that I write so 'dark.' Well, the only answer I have is that for the most times, my mind is dark - or WAS dark.
It is a state of mind they say. But what exactly does that mean? What does it mean when the person you have known for years are being buried because "Just telling someone" wasn't on the cards, or at least that is what they thought in their darkest hours of night, when sleep was nowhere to be found.
They say we learn from our mistakes - I for one have. But which mistake was it? Seeing no way out - or, seeing a way out, but, choosing to cause pain because the lack of physical emotion outweighed everything else?
But who of us can put our hands upon our hearts and say,"I have never felt this way, I have never needed to call upon a friend, or cry into a pillow when the silence surrounds me."
So I will ask - "What do you think of, when you hear the word depression?" A sad person? A person looking for help? Attention seeker?
I will tell you what I think - A persons darkest days, are what can heal or break them - or, both. It is up to us to decide which one it will be, and hope the posters, campaigns, friends and families arms are wide enough, to let us see it is, in fact only a word. Life is more than depression - it is love, support, seeing the silver lining if you will - but mostly it is living.
TALK TO SOMEONE - they are listening, even when you think they aren't.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800 273 8255