WARNING: this post contains material that some may find upsetting and confronting, if you feel depressed and unsafe, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14
It’s hard to know what to write anymore. I have gone from being well down the road to recovering from my last major depressive episode, working full time and starting to know after many years of unhappiness what happiness is. To now, a gradual decline of stress, exhaustion, sadness and depression. It started as gradual symptoms which I felt I could keep under control through rest and working from home once a fortnight, but it hasn’t been enough and that incline has become steeper, the momentum of the decline in my mood more rapid and my exhaustion taking over my body like a tsunami floods across the land.
A few stressors at work, coupled with long train travel and long days has taken its toll. I could feel it coming but once you are veering off course, the fog is descending and the Black Dog is back at your heel you can’t just do a detour and head back to where the sun is brighter and the road is easier.
I didn’t think a suicide of a celebrity would make a difference in my life. We all hear about it on the news, social media is flooded with tributes, and then we all move on with our lives not giving it another thought. Maybe it is because of what I have been through, maybe because at the time I was more vulnerable, and maybe as they say news like this acts as a significant trigger in some of our lives. I don’t know but the death of this celebrity started in me a slide show of my life, all the issues, stressors, my attempts to die, when I was an in-patient, just about everything flashed constantly in my head.
When I found out that one of my best friends since we were in year 7 had died, I went into shock, my head would not stop with the constant flashbacks and I started to feel myself falling over the cliff, nothing to stop my fall. The momentum of depressions onslaught on my mood and ability to function was too much. I managed to get through ten more days, go to her funeral and get back home but that is where life, depression and exhaustion overwhelmed me. Stopped me from seeing through the dark fog, veered me off the road to recovery down a dark, bumpy back road leading to no where with nobody around, I couldn’t stop the Black Dog being with me and I couldn’t stop the constant thoughts in my head.
I remember being at the funeral and thinking how totally unfair life is to take a healthy, fit Mum from her very young boys with no reason. I remember thinking that why should she be taken when she always had such a passion for life when for so long I have struggled to enjoy anything, struggled to find a reason to live and why she should be taken yet I am still here. I remember looking around and seeing so many people and thinking that as the person I am today, with so few in my life, would anybody notice if I was gone, if I passed away, would anybody want or need to say goodbye. I remember thinking how much I hated God that day, hated the hand that has been dealt to my friend and even more hated that he has kept me going when so often I just wanted to give up.
As much as I know that my friend would never want me to be so sad and thinking like this, it has got too hard to make it all just stop, to make that detour back onto the road to recovery. I know she would totally kick my butt and tell me to get it together and despite having the whole ‘life is too short’ concept thrown in my face I just can’t find my way out of the deep dark fog that is now shrouding me.
I managed one day at work this week, the doctor has given me the rest of the week off. She gave me the k-10 survey to complete to measure my mood levels and she is very concerned about the state of my mind and the level of my depression. She told me to see my Psychiatrist as soon as possible, so off I go to see him tomorrow, she told me if I feel suicidal then to admit myself into the psychiatric hospital, and I should see my regular GP to work on another mental health plan which needs to include seeing a counsellor.
You would think if I go to a doctor and say I need to see a counsellor it would be as simple as writing a referral, but no, nothing is simple when it comes to mental health and the services available. Now you can’t see a counsellor without having a double appointment with your GP to talk about a mental health plan. Just more paperwork, more beuacracy and more delays!
This week I have felt so incredibly exhausted that I haven’t the energy, the fight or the stamina to function let alone get to work and do my job. I find myself constantly in tears and when I am not crying I feel so depressed, so low it is unbearable. I want to constantly sleep but find my head full of flashbacks and thoughts, making me restless and tireder than I was before I lay down. The effort to do just small things feels like such a huge burden. Time drags on and on. I just want to not feel like this, not be a burden on my soul mate and my little boy, because that is what depression has come to be not just on my life but upon the three of us, a huge burden.
I know enough about depression now to know where I am heading and what impact it will have on me but I have no strength to stop it, I have no willpower left to get myself out of this mood and state of mind. I hope that tomorrow the sun will shine on my face instead of the deep darkness that has taken over me.