I am sick of people thinking that depression isn’t a real problem, that there is a quick fix to it. That people who suffer from depression should just “buck up” and “move on with life”. Oh and my favorite “It’s not so bad”. I wish I could school my entire state on depression. Oh, throw in a little bit of panic disorder in there and let them wallow in it… for one day.
Read up children.
It’s hard to explain to people what I feel like. Some of my friends have brought up that I might be bi-polar, however, so far I’ve only been diagnosed with Seasonal Depression, Panic/Anxiety Disorder and Insomnia, on top of my more accepted medical issues. Most of the time I’m alright. I get a little down in the dumps but can kick my own ass into gear and get shit done. I’ll be down and out for a day or so, but that’s it. But then, every few weeks, my anxiety kicks my ass. I’m not quite sure if there are environmental causes or if it’s all in my head but either way it sucks.
Panic Attacks for me can last for an entire day and into the night… at which point I take my Klonopin and fall into a drug induced sleep. It almost always starts with my “To-do list”. I’ll have too much on my plate, which isn’t surprising. Hell. I’m a single (almost full time) mom, full time student, and part time employee. Throw my Crohns in and I’m not a happy camper.
— So Ill get up in the morning and make my coffee. I’ll see that my kitchen is messy and put that on my list. But oh. My floor needs mopping. Then I’ll remember I have to work on my paper for school but look down at my daughter who is clinging to my leg and whining about a popsicle which I have refused her. Dammit all to hell, the dogs tore up the newspaper. My vacuums broke. I have 3 hours before work, do I have enough gas for work? Jesus, I’m paying $5.25 today to go to work, paying! My car’s tire is low. I can’t forget I have to go to the laundromat. Damn, I forgot to pay my car insurance.
A “normal” person may feel overwhelmed, but supposedly they just start on the list and start trucking through it. I try. I make a literal check list sometimes with the hopes that that helps. However, on a day where my anxiety is through the roof, more times than not I’m sitting on my kitchen floor trying not to pass out from hyperventilating. A simple to-do list like what I wrote above is enough to send me over the edge into a full blown panic attack. Once I start calming down the depression sets in.
“Why can’t I just power through this stuff?” “Look at how this stupid disorder has effected my school.” ” I could handle the Crohns better if I had a clear head.” “Doing this every day isn’t worth it”. At that point I’m exhausted, and can’t seem to get myself to get started on any of my projects. Even if it is a paper for my English class. I don’t even want to read a book. All I want to do is go to sleep and tell the rest of the world to choke on it. I don’t of course, I take care of my daughter, and well, but that’s it.
Then the vicious cycle begins, while my ass spent time not doing anything, my to-do list grows longer and more urgent. I power through it for a couple of weeks, only to get overwhelmed again. Rinse. Repeat.
My biggest problem, which I have made great strides with in the past year is admitting this. Is asking for help. Is saying “You know what? I’m not okay and I need help!”.
I’m aware that I’m a “strong woman” and that “I’ve been through hell and back”. That fuels it too. Some of the things I endured as a teenager (and even later in my marriage) should’ve fucked me up. I shouldn’t be where I am today. I *know* I can get through the roughest parts of life, so why can’t I handle day to day shit sometimes?
Putting this out there is a big step for me, and I hope that some how it opens some peoples eyes. I’m not looking for pity. I’m looking for understanding, for me, for other people.