This week we're joined by Anastasia Vesperman. This week, Anastasia is giving us an incredibly open insight into her life with mental illness. Here is part two of her 3-part piece:
"I think you ought to know I'm feeling very depressed." Marvin the Paranoid Android.
Depression. Is. Hard. Work.
Depression is concrete boots and an ocean of despair closing overhead.
Depression is Sisyphus and his boulder.
Depression takes away everything, and puts ennui in its place. Depression has made me cry endlessly. Depression has made me feel hollow and empty, and fraudulent and like an imposter. Depression has seen me push away all my friends. Depression has seen me lie in bed for hours and hours a day for months at a time, weeping and telling myself I'm a bad person and that I deserve to suffer.
I used to think that I was depressed when I was supposed to be going to school (autumn, winter, spring), and then fine when during the long school holidays (summer)... but then it turned out that you can be seasonally-affective, and I am. Winter is the hardest season, depression-wise. I love the cold, and the rain, and even the snow, when I manage to get near some. But there's something about the lack of sunshine on my skin (I take vitamin D + calcium tablets all year round, and have my Vit. D levels checked regularly, so it can't just be that), or my melatonin levels, or something else, that makes a difference, and it's definitely seasonal.
Depression is melancholy, it's sadness, it's grief; it's just wanting the torture to stop, because it feels like it never will. I've ended up with tablets in my belly instead of in the bottle where they belong, and other such things, because I couldn't see an end to the bleakness: I was stripped of hope, of friends, of family, of joy, of even some contentment at all...
But I've come to see that that lack of ending is the lie. I thought I was the lie. I thought I was the hopeless, helpless, pointless, basket-case of a sub-human being that I felt like I was.
It wasn't true. Once I started getting help, the sort of help _I_ needed, things started to ease. Just a little. And then more. And then more.
I still get depressed. And because it's a well-worn neural pathway, I will often return to the enormous black hole within me. At those times, I still encounter thoughts of self-harm and worse. But now I am able to weather those times, and come out the other side faster than ever before.
Remember to check back tomorrow from 8am to read Part 2 of Anastasia's story!