Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The Not-So-Great Depression.

I remember a specific moment as a teen feeling really sad and sorry for myself. I thought it was depression. I actually remember sitting there, with a letter opener, wondering where to hurt myself. I couldn't figure it out. I was confused how someone could feel so bad that causing themselves pain was somehow a pain reliever. I cried harder because I didn't even know how to be depressed the right way.

I can honestly say, that I have never battled with depression. I didn't really know how much of a gift that was until recently. Mental illness has been talked about a lot more in recent years. However, I think everyone can agree that it isn't widely understood. When I was introduced to The Bloggess, I remember how comfortable she made me feel reading about depression. Then Allie Brosh had her comics. They are witty, dark and informative all wrapped into one. Then, I met Corrina online through her Husband whom I had met here in Victoria. (Her blog is GusGreeper.com) When I started reading her blog, I was kind of taken aback at how open she was about her own struggles. She was a real, tangible person, talking honestly about how depression affects her.

I don't think I ever really understood any of them though. Or maybe I never really let their thoughts and feelings sit and stew in me. Then on Monday, Robin Williams died. At first I was actually hoping that it was foul play. Or another heart attack that led to asphyxiation. Somehow, that would sit better with me than suicide.

This tragic event was a huge shock to my system. It was like a train hit me. Everything I've read and heard about depression rose up and screamed at me. Telling me "This is real!" Challenging me to finally THINK about it.

I cried. Like that stupid, snot dripping out your nose, UGLY cry  At first, I thought it was at the death of Robin Williams. But when Sean asked me to share the 'why' I started realizing that it wasn't the death. It was the struggle that led to suicide that was really getting me.
I didn't understand. I don't understand.

I kind of just want to say sorry. Sorry if you've ever or are currently battling mental illness. I didn't realize the darkness. I didn't realize how all encompassing it is. I didn't realize acknowledge how society pushes you and your feelings further away.

I have so many questions, you guys. My eyes are open. My brain is open. My heart is open.
I think it's time to go back and really read what those people were writing.

It's time to talk about it.

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