That’s the thing about depression, it doesn’t care about you.
Once it finds you and makes a home in you – it changes you. To put it bluntly, your life suddenly seems like the one thing between you and a peace of mind. Everything feels like its wrong, everything feels like it hurts, and everything undoubtably does.
To hear about the deaths, or suicides rather, of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain bring a pit to my stomach and an ache in my heart. Depression is a scary place, one of which I fear I’ve seen too many times – and will meet again one day, inevitably. For starters, I don’t really know what to say except that I get it. I don’t think these people are foolish, I don’t think these people are selfish, I think these people had a disease.
But like I said, depression doesn’t care about who you are. It comes and it consumes you no matter what and I speak from experience, because that’s all we can speak from ourselves.
Depression doesn’t care how what you look like or who you are.
So stop telling the “pretty girl” that she has “so much” going for her and that there’s no reason to be depressed because “she’s so beautiful.” Your looks are subjective, and your looks aren’t really doing that much when you’re crying on your bedroom floor, with mascara running down your face, and swollen cheeks, at 2 in the morning wondering if you want to see tomorrow.
Depression doesn’t care how nice your home is.
It doesn’t care that you have a comfortable bed, cute dogs running around, a living room and kitchen that always holds guests who love you immensely. It doesn’t care about your backyard, your pool parties, your BBQs, your holidays or your birthdays that are all full with more people than you imagine. Depression doesn’t care about any of that. Because depression convinces you it is greater than all of that combined.
Depression doesn’t care about your success.
Or that you have gotten every job you’ve ever applied for, hold straight As, and on top of it – succeed at all of it at once. Depression doesn’t care. Depression will tell you none of it is enough because you’re missing something more, something bigger, something that you’ll never reach. That’s what depression will do for you. Depression will hand you every award and diploma and degree, because it knows it pushed you the entire way. And then remind you that none of it makes you better.
Depression doesn’t care that you want someone to be there.
That you went out for that one drink with your girlfriend so you can decompress, or to the gym to blow off some steam, it’s going to make sure that you feel awful. One hundred times worse than you felt before going to see your friend. Depression is going to tell you that life isn’t really all that great and that your friend is sick of you or your friend isn’t all that caring, depression will do that to you. Depression will tell you you’re the burden.
Depression doesn’t care where you’ve been.
Or that you saw 5 new cities this past year with your best friends and enjoyed every second of every moment in them. When you’re back home, in your bed, wondering why none of it is enough, it wont feel so special anymore. What’s the point in seeing the cities if depression saw them too? Depression will just come back and haunt you and remind you it wasn’t worth trying – you’re back to square one.
Depression doesn’t care that you do have support.
It doesn’t care that everyone you love is within walking distance or a drive away. Depression will stand between you two when you’re finally together. Depression knows this is where it can hit you hardest, when home doesn’t feel like home and the people you love don’t feel so close at all.
Depression doesn’t care that you’re in love.
Depression will lay right in between your naked bodies and consume you like you consume one another. And it will tell you you’ll never be able to love or be loved the way you want. Depression knows you’re feeling vulnerable, so depression will take advantage.
What you have to understand about depression is that it will tell you everything you want to hear when you’re thinking about whether or not your life is worth it.
And that’s the scariest part of the disease.
It will tell you it’s not, your life isn’t worth it, you wont amount to anything, over and over and over again. The sick part for me is that sometimes I wake up the next day and the chemicals in my body have switched up again and I’m thrilled about life, normal or manic, as they say. But that doesn’t make the rise any easier, it makes the depression darker when you know how good you’ve felt before.
So let’s please stop saying depression is a choice, when depression is so far out of our hands.
Let’s stop saying “they have it all” or “what a shame.”
Let’s start treating depression as a disease, a disease that kills like any other. A disease that spreads, and left untreated, can be fatal.
And please, please please, if nothing else call: