Phases.

I’m starting to notice a sort of pattern with depression. How annoying is that? I can’t believe this has been going on long enough to notice there’s a cycle. Sometimes the phases seem short. Sometimes they’re much longer. And I think they sometimes skip around? Can you call that a cycle? And a lot of the time, the mix and combine and sometimes I can feel all of the phases at once.

This makes me feel a little crazy.

Because it’s not that I’m sad all the time.

Sometimes, I’m incredibly irritable and pessimistic. Everything makes me mad. If I’m reading a book that frustrates me, I want to throw it across the room. If someone makes me mad, I want to scream at them.

Sometimes, I block all emotions. There’s two different sides of that. The first is just existing. I’m this emotionless blob. The second, I completely ignore everything and I look– and even feel– fine. In fact, I may even feel good. But I may start to feel sick to my stomach. I ignore the pain I mentally feel, and it starts taking it out on my body.

Sometimes, I’m really sad. This has a lot of faces: helpless, lonely, guilty, worthless, rejected, hopeless, etc. This is the one I think most people associate with depression. This is probably the worst phase and it often stays the longest.

Sometimes, I’m tired. Even if I’m technically sleeping when I’m supposed to and as long as I’m supposed to, it doesn’t feel like restful sleep. Lately, it’s been paired with annoyingly weird dreams that I often remember long after I’ve woken up.

Sometimes, I can’t feel anything. This has been a lot lately. It’s just starting to give way a little bit to the sad phase. When I can’t feel anything, it’s like I’ve lost interest in things. I don’t want to do anything.

Sometimes, there’s anxiety. It could be anything from just a sudden shudder down my spine to constant waves of pain and fear hitting my chest. I have no idea if this is because of the depression or just that I seem to struggle with anxiety from time to time as well.

Sometimes, it’s just emptiness. Or heaviness.

Writing them all out seems…weighty. It also feels… like I’m seeking attention or complaining or whining. So, I’ll quick explain why I wrote it out:

There are three reasons. The first is that it helps me process it. It helps me to write it out- to try to figure out what’s happening to me. People don’t… people don’t really want to hear about it, you know? So this way no one has to. Every person who reads this chose to read it. They chose to get to this point. And so, even if no one has read this far, I still was able to write it out. And I want to remember, if I ever get out of this and forget- I want to remember that it was real when I felt like this.

The second reason… a lot of people have depression. I want them to know what they’re feeling (or not feeling) is real. I want them to know there’s nothing wrong with them and other people have felt this way too.

The third reason… you probably know someone with depression. And it’s a hard thing to understand, especially if you’ve never felt such deep, negative feelings. So maybe primarily, this is for you. Because your friends and your family members need your support. They need you to empathize. And you may never truly understand…

I just want to tell you what it’s like.

-Melissa

 

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