I’m not Depressed Today, But I’m Always afraid it will come back
05 May 2017
A stitch in time saves nine they say. When we see a small thread coming out from our favourite t-shirt , there is something that tugs at us. We have been wearing it far too often for far too long. But in our day to day hurry, getting late for office, attending to our loved ones needs, getting the food ready we say to our selves – ‘I will sort out the cupboard tomorrow’, or ‘It’s just one thread, will fix it later’.
When later comes it gets difficult to find the right coloured thread and needle. Even if you do find it, the cumbersome process to get the thread into the needle makes you procrastinate. At the end of it, there comes a day when you are just about to lock the door to step out and there is a big hole in your favourite t-shirt right near the armpit.
My encounter with depression was something like that. Though everything was OK, nothing seemed to be fine. In the beginning itself, when I started feeling tiered all the time I knew something was off.
I was sleeping too much or too little, was unable to focus at work, the negative commentary in my head kept feeding my guilt. I felt empty and lonely. However, all of this I blamed either on the new diet plan, the work stress, the ‘bhaga-doudi’ of the festive season and relatives. But slowly it got worse, I didn’t feel like meeting others. Started finding all my friends irritating and didn’t feel like keeping in contact with them. At home, the things which I used to like, slowly started to burden me. I didn’t feel like doing anything anymore. I stopped watering the plants too. Nothing seemed to make me smile. Whenever my parents came to call out for meals, I used to lock my room and pretend to be asleep.
The blues of few days turned into weeks and over time into months. I lost my job, I started losing weight, and the boy I used to like had started dating my best friend. Things only went downhill from there.
To feel the pain that was in my mind, I started to cut myself. One day I cut the wrist too deep. Landed up in the hospital, but I lied saying that I was trying to clean the bathroom window. Sensing something is wrong my elder sister came to visit us with her husband. She convinced me to go see a psychologist. We even fought over it. I was so upset with her for suggesting that. How could she have thought am mentally unstable! I just wanted to be by myself! Instead of understanding my pain she was making things worse for me!. But then she made me promise that I would visit the psychologist just once. I did.
The first session itself, I felt a little better about myself. The psychologist saw all the scars on my forehand which I kept covered with a full sleeve shirt even in summer. My sister didn’t need to convince me for the second session, I made the appointment myself. It took me some time to get things in order. But the memories and scars are still there. I have a new job now, am eating well, sleeping regularly, have developed a new hobby, learning to play the guitar. But whenever I listen to a song that reminds me of my dark days, or when am alone in my room just before I fall asleep I feel that the nightmare might return. Maybe if I would have sort help earlier, when I knew something was wrong but I kept making excuses and ignoring it, then maybe I would have been able to save the parts of myself which were very dear to me. But then I remind myself of how strong I have been, the parts of myself that I am proud of and to take each day as it comes. It’s good to have a little fear, because then, you can make decisions which are crucial to your survival. Having no fear means you have nothing to lose; but now I have rebuilt a good life for myself, which is precious to me. And my dreams are bigger and better than my nightmares.
A perspective of a client provided by Chetana Alex (Psychologist with EpsyClinic)
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Tags: #Depression #Fear #WhatIf