I have a really great life. I don’t struggle to pay my bills, I get to do what I love for my job, I have an amazing wife who is my best friend and my partner in many crimes. I have a wonderful house, I am surrounded by people I love who love me. I’m successful in much of my work, and some days it feels like the best stuff in my professional life is yet to come.
The thing about Depression, for me, is that it can take something that was already unlikely, like not getting an audition for the Ready Player One movie, and using that to negate and erase all the other good and awesome things in my life. The thing about my Depression is that it can take something that I love that I’m doing really well, like rebooting my life and taking extremely good care of myself — the best I have in years — and make me feel like I don’t deserve to feel this good. The thing about my Depression is that it can make me feel like whatever it is I want to do, whatever it is that I want to start, whatever it is that I want to finish, just isn’t worth it, because it’s going to suck and nobody will like it, or it’ll be great but nobody will care.
Depression is a dick, and Depression lies, and even though I know all of that with the rational and reasonable part of my brain, the Depression part of my brain has been really loud and persistent and just relentless for a couple of weeks, now. It’s Friday, and when I look back on this week, I can see all the important and good stuff that I’ve done, I can see the small but meaningful steps I’ve taken toward completing things that are important to me … but those things are all in the shadows that are cast by the giant spotlight Depression is shining on the things I didn’t do.
And the thing is, I could probably come up with good reasons that I didn’t do the things that I wanted to do, and they are probably reasonable reasons, too. But I also know that all week long, Depression was right there on my shoulder like the leprechaun that tells Ralph to burn it all down, and quietly telling me that there’s no point, there’s no reason to do it, it’s not worth my time.
And now it’s Friday, and Depression is telling me that I’m a failure because I didn’t finish the things that Depression helped ensure I didn’t start.
That’s the insidious part of Depression, at least for me, and I know that to a person who doesn’t struggle with mental illness like I do it just sounds like a pity party where all the gifts are excuses.
But here I am. On Friday. No closer to finishing the things I wanted to finish than I was on Monday.
And I’m tired. I’m having a hell of a time falling asleep and staying asleep, and when I do sleep, I have vivid dreams that make me feel like I haven’t slept at all.
These places I visit in my dreams, and the experiences I have when I’m there, are so real, I feel like I’m forced to live this other life when I fall asleep that I have no control over, and it’s not awesome.
I’ve had a splitting headache since I got out of bed two hours later than I wanted to, and I’m tired.
i’m so tired.