Depression is not a four-letter word
Would everyone who suffers from some form of depression, please stand up.
I am one of them. I am not depressed, but I have depression (and anxiety). Though, if you didn't know better, you would never guess. I can be one of the most bubbly, outgoing, smiley, happiest, friendliest people out there.
I have suffered from some form of depression since high school - but it's not what you think. I don't sit around crying all the time, snuggled in bed with the shades drawn. I don't want to hurt myself, kill myself, or anyone around me. While those are very serious side effects that do affect many people, not all depression is alike.
My form of depression - paired with anxiety - is genetic, a chemical imbalance in my brain. I'm pretty sure I got it from my mom. The older I get, the more I understand why my mom was the way she was. My mom was very high strung when I was a girl - but who could blame her. She opened her own custom picture-framing businesses when she was pregnant with her second daughter. She worked long hours and was responsible for the tough stuff at work - the finances, taxes, invoices, bills - and not the fun, creative stuff that was her dream. The sale of the shop to her business partner coincided with a new type of anti-depression medication - one that better handled her anxiety but caused her to become sleepy and fatigued easily.
Now I am running a small nonprofit myself, responsible for the same nitty-gritty details, on a similar anxiety/depression medication that also makes me sleepy. My depression is the same has her depression. Lack of motivation, disinterest in pursuing my hobbies, becoming a homebody, sleeping a lot, quick to cry at movies. It can be really tough to get going in the morning, but once I do, I'm fine.
Yesterday was rough. On top of allergies and sinus issues, I was just feeling blah. It was hard to motivate myself to do anything at all, let alone the things I needed to accomplish. I didn't find energy to get anything done until almost 10 p.m. last night - which made for a long night.
I'm sharing this because I'm sure I am not alone. Depression is not a four-letter word. It's not something to be shunned or feared. It affects millions of people in this country - and yet it has such a negative stigma.
Moving forward with this blog, Dan and I pledge to be honest about our path to figure out our adult lives and how to run our household and family. Part of that honesty is my struggle with depression - a struggle that sometimes affects my ability to wholly contribute to the household. Part of the motivation for this blog is to kick me in the butt and get me moving, because writing and publishing are some things I like to do.
So, who else suffers from depression? I know you're out there. What do you to to help you kick the doldrums? I would LOVE to hear your thoughts - and you should know this is set up to be a safe space. Thanks for listening!