I’ve been somewhat depressed lately. This isn’t new. Allie Brosh from Hyperbole and a Half described depression pretty nicely in her recent post “Adventures In Depression”; depression rears its ugly head in an avalanche of self-loathing and depravation. It makes it especially difficult for me to write, because most of my internal dialogue goes something like this:
My brain: I know! I’ll write about birds.
My depression: Birds are stupid. You’re stupid.
My brain: Uhhh.... ok. What about the fact that I’ve abandoned the gym in favor of climbing up and down the steps in my own home?
My depression: Whatever. You’re fat.
My brain: Oh.
My brain: I can’t think of anything anymore. All my ideas have been snuffed-out by the cold, blowing, wind of self-criticism.
My depression: I told you so.
My brain: I could write about being depressed.
My depression: No one wants to listen to that, you whiner.
My brain: Ok then.... I’ll just go stand in the corner....
It started back this summer when I went to the dentist. I hadn’t been to the dentist in six or seven years, and was banking on some good stories to come out of my own oral negligence.
Instead, it was... uneventful. Apparently I have good (and boring) tooth genes. I wrote a post about it, but didn’t really like it that much.
And ever since that, I’ve felt flat. Boring. Whiny.
Even writing this, I’m hard-pressed to squelch the voice of “why bother?” Is this a writer thing? A depression thing? Or am I in a pity-party state of mind that I should just get over already?
Yet as wretched and stupid as I feel right now, I do know one thing: It could be so much worse.
Before we figured out that I had specifically bipolar depression, my depressive cycles were so much more devastating. I ceased being able to work, take care of my children, and function in any sense. The medication I now take every single day saved my life, continues to save my life.
And just having written this is cathartic. At least it's better than keeping it secret and silent. I don’t know when, but I know it’s temporary, and I’ll get though it.
Just as I have before.