A dark cloud shadows the steps of one in six adults throughout their lifetime, and that cloud is named depression. The cause of depression is varied. It could be the result of a chemical imbalance or trauma. Sometimes there’s no apparent reason. Whatever the cause, living with depression is an exercise in frustration. You can’t will it to go away. You think that it’ll go away on its own, but there are no guarentees. After nine solid months of living through this, I was finally diagnosed last friday.
Talking about depression this frankly may seem odd to some people but I am not the type of person to shy away from difficult questions or situations. For too many years I let things bottle up inside and the end result was me in a hospital bed being treated for ulcers at the ripe age of eighteen. Never again.
What exactly does it mean to be depressed? Well, it’s different for everyone, but the tell-tale sign for me was that I couldn’t focus or concentrate. I could sit at work and stare at my screen for hours and not get anything accomplished. There were days where I barely managed to write a single word. I tossed and turned at night, woke up at dawn, and was always tired. I was perpetually grumpy, liable to get angry over the slightest thing. I was emotionally unstable, apt to cry over complete nonsense. The worst part was that, try as I might, I couldn’t control it, or stop it. In fact, for quite a while, I didn’t even notice it. The weight of despair was on me, crushing me completely. Only at its worst did I finally see the extent of the damage.
The bottom line is that I was diagnosed with depression and put on medication to treat it. I also had bloodwork drawn to test for the possibility of a disorderly thyroid, which seemed to be enlarged to some degree. It doesn’t mean I’m fixed. It can take anywhere from one to eight weeks for the medicine to really take hold. Even after that, it could be years before I’m “cured”. It does mean that i took the first step towards getting better, seeking help, and it felt damn good.