Holidays are supposed to be a time of joy and celebration, but for some people they are anything but.
Depression may occur at any time of the year, but the stress and anxiety during the months of November and December may cause even those who are usually content to experience loneliness and a lack of fulfillment.
Kerr, Michael. “Holiday Depression.”
Healthline, http://www.healthline.com/health/depression/holidays#1. *
How did you feel during the Thanksgiving holiday break? Did you sit at the dinner table with all of your family listening to old stories, hearing laughter and seeing bright smiles on some of their faces ? While you sat and listened and smiled as well to fit in did you wonder about the happiness others felt? What it was like to know that feeling and be completely engulfed in it? I can say that I have always been this way, I have watched emotions on the faces of family and friends and wondered if they to were possibly hiding something like depression under that smile. If they did then they were damn good at covering it up, carrying on conversations and interacting with others seems to be something depressed folks would avoid.
For those of us who will be spending this time alone we all know how dark those days can be. We tend to think too much about things that hurt. Everywhere you turn there are Christmas lights, music, and window displays serving as a reminder that happiness is surrounding us yet we are void of it all too often.
One thing I have found that helps with this situation is getting out of the house, go and do something out of your comfort zone. Throw yourself into nature and see where it leads you.
As Neal Young once said, “don’t let it bring you down, its only castles burning.”
I lay here on the floor next to the fire and feel hollow. It takes grit to make it through the day without saying fuck it. I listen to the popping and crackling of the wood and it seems so simple. I want simple, I look at the overcast sky and the wind sweeps away leaves only to bring more. The pines sway slightly and brush one another, planted so closely together light is scarce under them. Layer upon layer of needle create a hush that can be heard when the wind gusts. I want to fade with the light, a setting sun.
Check out this link to a book, Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It.
I am unsure what it is today that makes my heart feel heavy. It guess it is a not so simple as the continuation of a guaranteed relationship (depression). I’ve started to mix meds, doc is giving me Wellbutrin with my Celexa now so I suppose that my sidekick depression had to rear its ugly head to remind me that its still there just around the corner.
I noticed that I am always day dreaming about a better place, better people, warmer smiles, something that will reach within me and yank out whatever it is that causes pain. It seems like a simple fix, but its not. I have been travelling the country side since i graduated high school and I cannot find this place. Reality is this place is within me and I cannot shed light on it.
I have a vacation planned at the end of October, I will be spending a little over a week with my father. I have been thinking about telling him how I have suffered from severe depression for as long as I can recall but I do not know how to present this to him.
He is a burly old man standing around 6’2″ and does not believe in showing weakness. I suppose that is why i went until I was 33 years old to finally admit my faults, it wasn’t of my own will, my body literally felt like giving up and I knew that there was only one way outta this rut and that was to seek outside help.
So the next step is to tell him my life long condition, and I have contemplated this, is this something that should be done? I figured he would take blame for some of my depression as a kid and I would rather him not suffer for it.
I am actually laughing right now….. Why do I feel like my depression blog is becoming a whining post?????
A little yellow leaf bid its final farewell. It released its hold upon the limb as the autumn wind encouraged it to do so. I watched is as it fell so gracefully spinning and twirling between the branches of other trees. Though it only took a moment for it to fall to the forest floor I wondered how the leaf felt. It was its last dance and it did it so blissfully. I watched it come to rest and was filled with a deep sense of wonder. There is life in everything that we see and life will eventually depart. A simple little leaf, having lived through the summer months. Changing to a beautiful yellow in the fall allowing me to watch its most graceful moment. It was only one season of life and then it had to let go. Our lives are but a season which too must come to an end. Question is will you leave this life blissfully offering someone that moment to smile upon you as you drift into eternal sleep? Will you bow out gracefully?
The Red String of Fate is an interesting lore that derived from East Asia. Long story short the Chinese and Japanese believed that an invisible string bound two people together. Possibly destined lovers, regardless of place, time, or circumstances, also it may be that they are destined to meet one another in a certain situation or help each other in a certain way.
I’ve often wondered what I am destined for, will be it a lifetime of depression? Is there an invisible string that ties me to something that will lift me above all of this and wake me up for the first time? I look back at when I was younger and cannot recall any path I could have taken that would have led me to a place of happiness. It felt like fate, as if the gods above pointed a finger a me and said ” you there, you will walk under a sky of cloud and rain with little sunshine to provide comfort”.
As many other people I too have had highs and lows growing up but I do not know if they shaped me or was it going to be this way regardless. I now live a pretty darn good life, I have a solid job that has allowed me to provide for me and my family. I watch my children and wonder what are the odds they are destined as me. I feel for them and their mother, that they were dealt a father and husband who should be more.
The string of fate, it continues to unravel yet I hold on by this string.
The alarm sounds at 4:00 a.m. and I wearily stare at the ceiling thinking to myself, shit it’s that time already. I slowly crawl out of bed and make my way to the bathroom as quietly as possible trying not to wake the wife. Standing in the bathroom leaning onto the counter I stare at my reflection for a few seconds and think damn I look older than I should, I’ve wondered how much the stress,anxiety, and depression of all these years has contributed?
In a matter of 30 minutes I am off to work, making the 50 minute commute I despise. As I approach the entrance to my work location I feel the levels of anxiety and depression increase, ah yes there is that old friend I can expect every Monday morning. I do my best to fight off all the negative thoughts stewing about in my head and focus on what matters and why I am here trudging through another week of politics and bullshit, the family I vowed to support.
There is no doubt in my mind that if I did not have my family’s support I would have chosen a path of self-destruction, I was already on it when I met my wife. I wasn’t an abuser of drugs or alcohol but I found comfort in misery therefore I would separate myself from everything. Who knows where that would have led, I still feel the yearning to live that solo style and to allow this ailment to finally consume me. How do you explain that to your wife? How to you tell her that you still want to sink into oblivion and do not want a helping hand? My family and the few friends I have truly do not know the dark path I have followed for so many years, I have done well when needing to stand in the light and show them I am like them, that I am happy and doing well…….
I arrive at work and do my best to smile and greet the employees as they enter the building where the morning meeting is held. I am lucky enough to be one of the speakers who addresses the companies employees every morning. This to me is pure torture, but I push on and put on my best smile and speech.
I hope that everyone has a good Monday, I damn sure will try.
My spirits have been higher that usual this week. The hour long drive home from work typically has a negative affect on me as I sit and traffic and dwell upon all the shit that annoys me in life. Once I get home my wife convinces me to jump on the mountain bikes and cruise the neighborhood and let off some steam. It has finally cooled off enough to be able to enjoy an evening ride. After the ride and settling in for the evening I picked up my Banjo and plucked away at a song I had been practicing a few months back.
It felt good to play music, the one thing you can lose yourself in and forget about the present. It is so hard some days to do anything other than lay down on the couch after a long work day, you literally have to go against what you feel, and just do whatever is on your mind. Depression has a comfort zone and that zone is very small. For those afflicted depression rules many aspects of our lives, it takes fighting back with everything you can to simply muster up the courage or motivation to step outside the comfort zone and be who you want to be, if only for a minute.