Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Transformation As Depression


Barbara: I mentioned on Monday that depression has been a big topic of conversation with me lately. It seems many people around me are struggling with it—especially right now. And, yes, I’m sure we can blame the season in some part (certainly in Canada), but I also know that in all the cases I’m familiar with, there has also been a major life shift or change that has precipitated that low-grade, tenacious, and numbing persistence that’s known as “depression”.

I’m going to try not to make any pat, “uplifting” statements today. In fact, as I said to Deb, I’ve learned not to be a cheerleader through someone else’s pain. Not because I don’t deeply yearn to be of help or to shine light, but because I find that we all have to go through what we have to go through. And my shoulder or my reassuring smile—while useful and sweet maybe in the moment—is not going to stop or hold off someone else’s time of (excruciating) change.

Because here’s my theory—and it may sound banal or trite, but the thing is, in order for us to measure the merit of a theory, we kinda need to look at all the evidence and decide if we think it fits, or if we think it’s a load of bull (kindly phrased conflicting opinions are welcome!):

I think depression is the surest sign that we are in a time of transition. In every example I can think of that comes from my own personal experience with depression (and I do mean “depression”, not “clinical depression” or any other medical or chemical imbalance), or that I’ve been privy to through other people’s periods of depression, there has also been a meaningful change going on.

And change, for all its good and wonder and importance, is not easy. Especially if set off by a wracking, heartbreaking personal tragedy: the end of a marriage, the loss of a loved one, the loss of a job, etc. But depression usually sets in after grief or any other major outburst of emotion has had its way with us. I think depression is more the detritus of upheaval. To me, it signals that we have begun to work at accepting something. And that’s exhausting. Because acceptance is work, never mind that we’re also busy now mourning what we know we have to leave behind—which is of course, fundamentally, our “old self”.

How depressing is that? To leave behind that comfy old self we know so well?

The other depressing fact? Change often takes its sweet-ass time to do its thing...

So, what do you think? In your experience, in hindsight, has depression also marked important periods of change for you?


Deb: Since I read this, Barb, I have been searching for the quote one of my FB friends posted today about change and acceptance and I could not find it, but it was brilliant. Basically it said that if we always accept the fact that what is happening to us in the natural order of our lives is what is supposed to happen and as a result we do not fight it, that it will lead to a healthier way of looking at the changes in our lives, however painful. It said that the pain comes from resisting the pain. Does that make sense? I am paraphrasing but it totally resonated with me. Really moved me actually. 

47 comments:

  1. That line....pain comes from resisting the pain....really hits home with me right now. In our family, we are all fighting the pain right now, and each person does it differently. Although it is very sad, it is interesting to watch your loved ones and how they deal with a huge life change and the fear of the pain that change will bring. Quite a few members are running pretty quickly right now. I chose to try and be quiet, feel and deal. I knew this was a big one and wanted to deal with it in bits. So I faced it dead on and was quiet enough to allow it to face me in a unobstructed fashion. I have had days where I totally fall apart and am useless, but I think it could be worse if I didn't face it. So each day is a new challenge and I am learning to be patient with myself (which is a new concept for me) But I am not in control right now, this is....and I am learning a new method to cope. I know I really have to follow my instincts on this one and quietly listen, gain strength and then, move on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Beautifully, beautifully put, Jo. The word you used that really hit home for me is "unobstructed". Which in so many ways must feel counter-intuitive -- when something comes to hit us we want to duck or hide or cover ourselves with shields. Yet, we never outright avoid any of the pain that change or truth brings on. We may delay the inevitable, but that's the best we can do. I admire the courageous stance both you and Deb have taken to face it head on, in your own "unobstructed" ways.

      Delete
  2. Your theory makes a lot of sense to me, Barb. Last year I went through a fair time of depression, and it was as I was realizing that the job I had given up a lot of alternatives to pursue wasn't for me after all, and I had to reevaluate my life and plans. I guess I'm still figuring out the answers to the questions that bout of depression brought up, but thankfully I'm a generally positive person and I enjoy certain types of change and uncertainty. I think the move to a warmer climate has helped ward off the depression and let me figure out the changes in a more positive way than I could at home in winter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I just watched a doc last night called "Happy" (this was after I posted this), and one of the coping strategies they talk about in the film is changing things up. Even if it's just a walk in your own hometown that takes you in a new, unexplored direction. I think you and your sister have changed things up in a BIG way, and naturally that will open up new vistas of answers and possibility and hope and ... change! Enjoy.

      Delete
  3. Depression during a time of transition?

    Yeah...definitely NEVER thought of that before. My mom just retired this past summer and she admitted to me that for the first month or two she was REALLY depressed, even though she was looking forward to retiring. She said she just didn't feel like her life had any worth anymore. It really broke my heart to hear my hard-working, strong and supportive mom admit something like that. I don't know if she still struggles (I'm sure she still does), but things have gotten better now that she's gotten used to the idea of not working every day anymore.

    I also have to admit that during my (very brief, thank the Lord) times of unemployment I had brief swings of depression. I think we as human beings all have an innate desire to be needed and it just wasn't getting fulfilled for me.

    Barb, I am with you on this...trying to be a "cheerleader" through someone's pain. Like I mentioned before, I think me always trying to "help" or offer the last word comes from my desire (our desire..?) to be needed. I've learned over the years that sometimes you really don't have to say anything at all. The power of physical presence speaks louder than any words ever can.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To your last thought here, Holly, I was talking to my daughter about this last night and we also realized that because it's so hard for us to see a loved one going through pain or depression, we want to "hurry them through it". Selfish? Maybe. But I think, unless the person is in trouble of course, we need to support our beloveds by allowing them to grow and change, even if it's painful for them along the way, and painful for us to watch.

      I feel for your mom, and I'm certain she can and will find her new sense of self.

      Delete
    2. Completely agree, Barb. And thank you. :)

      Delete
  4. Barb, this is a good subject! Ive spent most of my childhood in depression and I can tell for sure that it is ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS because we are going through a life altering GOOD change.

    Deb, you are right. I think I posted something like that a while ago. I always post such things. The more we resist any situation the more it grows faster and gets stronger. Because we are focused on it. And whats the most basic law of the universe? What you give out, you get back. So it keeps growing. But when you just say "Fuck it!" and let it go...It passes faster than you can imagine.

    Barb, you know the principles I believe in. I totally believe that whenever we go through massive negativity or contrast if you will. We are launching rockets or desires and they all get accumulated in our vortex. And the energy is moving reallllly fast. Thats why we feel sooo bad in depression, because the energy is moving in the opposite direction, the positive direction. But when we release all the resistance, all the depression we swooop right in the vortex. And its DELICIOUS!

    I remember once when I was in depression the moment I released it...I was in the vortex for 2 whole days. And when my biggest depression period passed, I felt absolutely amazing. I made decisions I never thought I could make and I dont think I would be who I am if it wasnt for those crappy depressed times of my life! So yes, its always darkest before the dawn!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Beautifully put, Shalaka. Yeah, we don't want the state of depression to get so comfortable that's all we recognize, right?!

      Delete
  5. I have experienced depression with change. Naturally, it's usually a change that I didn't want or expect. And yes, that resistance is a biggie. It's through acceptance that we can move forward. When something like loss comes our way and we can accept that it just is, before making any judgments, then we can move more easily into peace and operate from there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love how you've expressed this, Eileen. Resistance really plays such a huge part in our experiences, doesn't it? So often it feels like a survival mechanism. Even when it isn't at all.

      Delete
  6. I am glad you separated clinical depression (my issue) and just temporary depression. It is always important to make sure you know what you have and proceed on the path of changing it up or taking medication to help.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well put, Madge, as I share the same issue. I think some of the coping strategies can coincide, though, too. (god knows I'm trying.)

      Delete
    2. Dawn, you're a great example of someone who has to deal with the clinical aspects of depression, but still successfully uses coping strategies that can apply to all. My question to both of you -- how do you separate the difference between something lingering and painful but ultimately temporary and something physical and enduring like clinical depression? ie when seek help?

      Delete
    3. Barbara,

      That's taken a long while to figure out, and I'm still learning how to recognize and differentiate one from the other. Here's what I try to do:

      How long have I been feeling like this? Can I pinpoint a specific starting point or "trigger"? What am I saying to myself? This last one is a biggie. If, by using what I've learned, and by talking to friends, I can convince myself it's only temporary, a "this too shall pass" thing, I'm dealing with a speed bump.
      It's when deeper, "uglier" thoughts come into play that I know I'd better start talking to someone for help. When everything sounds like so much bullshit. (excuse me) Rigel mentioned further down the concept of being trapped. When I'm feeling trapped and only really see one way out. I may not be actively suicidal, but when death starts to look really good again, I know I need help. One of the good things about the meds/treatments/etc is that I haven't been actively suicidal in a long time. Noticing these signs stops me from getting down there, too.

      Delete
    4. I felt kinda naively stupid for asking the question and really really appreciate your discernment here. This makes it quite clear and I hope it might help others who might be asking "which depression am I dealing with". That said, seeking help can also really help us get through plain old depression, much as it can help those dealing with physical ones, so help is ALWAYS an option.

      Delete
    5. This is how I do it, but it can't be an end-all, be-all guide for everyone. There are sites about "when is it depression? or signs about depression. If you have more than I think it's 3, then you might start looking into possibilities beyond "waiting it out." We all need help (UGH, what a thought!), but what kind of help and when is different for everyone.

      Delete
  7. I've never really thought of it that way before, but yeah.

    In my experiences, I sometimes feel a bit on edge when something is about to change. Not necessarily depressed, but edgy. I don't act like myself. Like I posted in Monday's blog, the good news is that nothing is permanent. The bad news is that nothing is permanent.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Great last lines. Thanks, Kelly.

      Delete
  8. I have dealt with depression especially last year, when my grandpa died. after he died I just felt like I wanted to give up on life and not even try anymore.
    but I agree that if you look at things with a positive outlook, you will become stronger then if you would look at things with a negative outlook. I personally believe that somethings happen for a reason, beyond our control. we may not always understand know what that reason is, and we may not understand why but if we take each situation as it comes, and try to look at it the best we can . hopefully it will make us stronger I hope this makes sense,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think of depression more of like, playing with a deck of cards and what I mean by that is you're going to have your good hand, and you're bad hand which is the depression, but if you lay your cards out on the table and look at each one, and try to find the positives in each one and you will have a stronger hand. kind of silly I know, but that's what makes me think of.

      Delete
    2. Not at all silly, Lyndsie! I find analogies really helpful, actually, so I love this. I also hope that our travails make us stronger. But there's usually that cost of the painful growth through it...

      Delete
  9. Great subject. Having been through a divorce, ugh still have a hard time saying that after 3 years. It is amazing where the comfort and help came from. Humour is everything to me. I had really lost it during that time. As silly as it may sound I found it again on facebook. Through meeting new friends that gave me my first real belly laugh about my divorce, to me being able to post funny things. I have learned so much through these times. Another reason I love this blog. A whole new outlet for discovering and relating to things with women around my age. I didn’t so much need people to be my cheerleaders, as I needed people to remind me life goes on. So taking this new lease on life with big strides. I may stumble here and there, but if I don’t attempt to take those steps, I will never know what I am capable of. I am finding I am capable of quite a few things. I am most grateful to have people that know and understand me. The middle ages can really be fabulous, if you allow yourself to enjoy it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, thanks for this, Heidi! I think those of us who keep our eyes and ears open when we're going through crap, and then allow ourselves to reach toward those things (yes, even FB!!) will get through it maybe more quickly if no less painfully. I also totally agree that the middle ages can and are fabulous!

      Delete
  10. Funny you should bring this up today... My mood is on the down slope of "clinical" depression. I saw my therapist today (talk about timing) and we talked about one of the things I have a hard time with: Acceptance.

    Here's the take-home message: Accepting a mood or situation and its consequences is NOT "okaying" something. I prefer the word "acknowledgement" because that's really what you're doing. Yes, it's there. That, in and of itself, is it...it's just THERE. No judgment, no feelings, just...there. Don't define it by "good" or "bad," just accept that it is. (I have a tough time with the "don't judge" part. Depression = bad in my mind.)

    I'll be joining a behavioral therapy workshop at the end of the month. It's learning/remembering what makes me happy so I can draw on those things in times like this. It's also working at it until you find the right thing for the right circumstance. Music hasn't worked for me lately. I bought a show ticket the other day and, as much as I look forward to the shows, it's not raising my spirits. (The OH MY GOD SHOW SHOW SHOW FEBRUARY GET HERE NOW thing isn't firing at the moment.)(It's times like these that, ironically, I want to stop taking my meds. The absolute HIGH of the bi-polar energizes me like nothing else can. The catch, of course, is the lows. The positives to taking my meds outweigh the negatives JUST enough.)
    The workshop will help define other things that might help. There's no such thing as having "too many options" to assist in crawling back up from the hole. It's remembering what they are and using them.

    I don't know what's changed recently, for me, other than my mood itself. I don't remember anything specific. With my therapist's help, I'm usually able to backtrack to the time/place that might have been the tipping point, but no such luck today.

    When change is in your control, I think it leads to a happier place. When it's out of your control, you feel hopeless to an extent, and that is part of depression. When you "accept" that you can't do anything, ideally, you'll relax a bit and relieve some of the tension which is causing some of the depression as well.

    WARNING: It's very easy to talk about all of this, but DAMN, is it hard to do!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can't tell you how much I appreciate you weighing in on this subject, Dawn. Despite what you're going through and have to contend with, you are SO articulate about it and so share your wealth of experience with the rest of us. I call this phenomenon "taking one for the team". We can't help you recover, but by going through this shiite, you are helping us understand as well helping us build our own strategies based on your insights. Would love to hear about your experience at the workshop. All this said, it pains me to know you're on a low-low right now. Sending hugs and love and hope that something shifts asap xoxo

      Delete
    2. Barb, it's something that, for better or worse, I know a bit more about than your average Joe. So, if I know some of the answers (and they come to mind so easily), or have insight, like with the Acceptance, I might as well share it, because maybe it will help someone else.

      It's easier to do it here, because everyone is pulling for me, and I'm more comfortable because I'm not being judged. Like you said earlier, Barb, cheer-leading isn't always what's best for someone, (you KNOW how I feel about "hey, cheer up!" :) ) and here, there is more than just one of those Facebook pictures of scenery with quotes about "it's always darkest before the dawn" over-laying it. Triteness irritates the CRAP out of me. There's none of that here, either.

      Plus, today, the timing is beyond perfect, so, hey, here I am, getting thrown out at first base, but at least a runner may advance to scoring position because of it.

      Delete
    3. Like a champ, you picked up on my team analogy and played along ;) And like a friend, you came through for the team.

      Delete
  11. I'm hesitating to find the right words and then make myself put them down here.
    I haven't really had a chance to set back and look at myself to see if I was changing or not. I guess I am. Good change or bad I've yet to figure out.
    I'd say I'm depressed but I've yet to work up the courage to go to the doctor about it. I keep a diary which helps deal with life but I am starting to realize I may need to go see a doctor. Things have taken a not so great turn as of late.
    So as I now I have to disagree with your theory Barbara. I certainly don't feel like this is all due to a overall change but it may take some time for me to step back and see the whole picture. I will try to remember to take that look back and note how I've changed once it's all over.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't blame you, Kelly: "finding the right words" for stuff like this is a pretty tall (maybe impossible) order. Since you are IN depression right now, you probably haven't gotten to the "other side" where you've left it behind and can (or can't) learn something from it and/or feel changed. (wow, that so doesn't make sense!). Anyway, I do think that at some point you may need to find out if this is a period of depression that will go away or if it's a medical condition that might need more help than you can give yourself... Maybe some of our other readers with experience with clinical depression will help guide you in the right direction. xo

      Delete
    2. Souzan Rezai from Vancouver, BCJanuary 11, 2013 at 1:47 PM

      Hi Kelly,

      The fact that you are keeping a journal is HUGE. Maybe you know that already, but I can say from my own experience that the toughest thing for me in addressing my own depression, was that I was so good at not addressing it for so long. Keeping a journal is a great way to keep a barometer of yourself, and if you feel off, you are the best gauge of that. If it is of any help, I will share I how I came to deal with my own depression. My doctor actually recommended anti-depressants for a long time to me, and I declined. I did so because my family has no history of clinical depression, and while I knew I was depressed and unmotivated, I was scared of meds. One thing she said to me that made me realize where I was, was "You're young, you should be at 100%". I am still very happy with my decision to not take meds, but that is only my journey, it won't be the same for anyone else ,however when she said that I should be at 100%, I realized I didn't even know what that would look like for me, because I couldn't remember the last time I had felt 100%. I chose to get counseling. Through counseling, I found the tools and courage to do more of what I needed. I spoke to my parents, and with their support, went to a health retreat, which was exactly the medication I needed. The retreat helped me start to rebuild, and from there I found the courage to tell my family I needed a time out from 'city life' to absorb all I had gone through. I moved to Tofino (a tiny hippy town on the island in BC) for three months, by myself. I am now what I consider stable. I still see my counselor for what I call "check-ins" every now and then, but feel whole. (For the record, that whole spiel was about a 3 year process...)
      Medication has helped many people I know be able to become whole again, too. I strongly suggest finding a therapist that you connect with to help you through it, whatever your journey may be.
      I hope at least something I said was helpful, this seems unearthly long and rambly, but in case any of it DOES help, I will post it, and believe you will forgive me if it doesn't!

      all the best,
      Souz

      Delete
    3. Thanks so much for sharing this, Souz. So appreciate you lending your own experience to this topic. xo

      Delete
  12. Barbara, I was glad you differentiated between depression and clinical depression, etc. There are some lows that people simply can't control because their body has been hijacked whether it be by a chemical imbalance, chronic illness taking its toll, seasonal affect disorder, chronic pain, or whatever. I was relieved to see you acknowledge that difference.

    I see what you're saying about transition, and it makes sense. But, I'd like to also point out the dangers of the exact opposite: being trapped. Being unable to transition. Suffocating. Being a situation that is eating you alive with no means of escape in the foreseeable future. Being desperate to make a transition and having no calculable way out will also throw a person down into their pit and keep them there. Being unable to transition out of a bad situation and having no sight of the hope of being able to transition within a redeemable period of time is also very, very depressing and dangerous. I've been there. Every day is darkness, something to be survived, a swamp to wade through with continual bites and stings. Month after month, year after year of this breaks a person. I was there. I have a span of 3 years or so that is a terribly painful fog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know it's terribly hard, Rigel, especially when we want to change and still it doesn't happen. I spent years in that state too and it was the toughest thing I've ever endured (compounded by a series of outside blows that in themselves were overwhelming). I did get through it though, but in its own time, not by my command. I did know that whole time that I was not experiencing a "clinical depression" (even though I did seek therapy, etc) and so never got medication. Does this sound like your experience or do you think there might also be an underlying medical component to your feeling of being stuck (on top of, you know, also truly being stuck)?

      Delete
    2. Oh, yeah, I have an autoimmune thyroid disease. But, I can't always access/afford treatment. It makes everything from my heartbeat to how fast a sprained ankle heals to my mood thatmuchworse when it flares up. But, hey, whatcha gonna do? *shrugs*

      Far, far, far more dangerous to my well-being is the sense of being trapped. Having no choices. Slamming into brick wall after brick wall. Swallowed by the darkness. That's WAY worse.

      Delete
  13. I do think that the changes in our lives play a huge role in sadness and those slumps in happiness. I'm normally a very happy and optimistic person and so it's been a real struggle for me to deal with the sadness that has come with all the changes recent years have wrought. I really wasn't sure how to deal with it as I've never had such a depressed period in my life and for awhile I did consider that I was really depressed not just sad.
    In retrospect the biggest issue at that time was my lack of sleep. I didn't have insomnia, I literally did not have enough time in which to sleep, it was an insanely busy period. A year and a half later I still sometimes feel as if I'm weathering a storm. Particularly as more and more aspects of my parents and brothers failing health become apparent but I've gotten better at accepting it. I stopped feeling bad about feeling sad and acceptted not only the situation but the sadness as a normal process.

    Everyone here, through posts and discussions like this one has helped me learn to do that, thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for this, Erin, because you also bring such an important point to the discussion. I so believe that sleep patterns and what we eat will also have an incredible impact on how we feel in general. It's funny how that retrospective view gives us so much more insight than we can maybe glean when we're going through something.

      Delete
    2. Sleep is SUCH a big part of depression. Too much or not enough is one of the possible symptoms of depression. However, as you have pointed out here, not getting enough sleep can affect your mood GREATLY. It's one of the things that wears down your defenses and makes you vulnerable to depression. Hell, it can Cause it itself!

      When I was first hospitalized, the first thing they did for me, (and, I noticed, for everyone that was admitted) was prescribe sleeping pills. Oh glorious joy to actually wake up from a restful sleep!!! You can't truly appreciate a good night's sleep until you get one after a miserable period of getting NONE.

      I'm not suggesting sleeping pills. I am, however, telling you to NOT forgo sleep! You are your biggest priority, and whatever you say you're too busy doing will suffer because you aren't sleeping. Please, just don't let it happen again. Take care of you. :)

      Delete
    3. Bravo, Dawn. Thanks, baby.

      Delete
  14. I think I will start with some good news. My friend, of whom I have discussed a bit in couple of my posts, is recovering from clinical depression. There are few indicators, like I am not needed as much anymore as she is accepting more people into her life. Also she has told me this as well, so it is not just my assumption. I have tried to remind her that the cloudy days are normal in everybody's life. Life will not be just sun shine. I think that major part in her recovery was indeed acceptance like someone already mentioned (sorry writing from my phone, so checking for the correct reference is hard)(not impossible, but I am too lazy to do it, to be honest).

    Then about the not-clinical depression. I have had my share of it. While living in a (hostile) foreign environment as a kid with no sun during the winter time. Well very limited amount. After living alone with my sis for few years and then living a year with relatives whose trustworthiness is still a big issue. I do admit that had I gone to see someone or talked to someone I probably would have been committed in a mental institute. I do see some of my ideas back then somewhat radical but they kept me alive. Like someone mentioned the fog. I felt like I would be swimming underneath a surface. Sometimes in really deep and sometimes just underneath but not above. If I ever felt that I was above the surface and saw the sky, there was always a relative near by to sink me again.

    So I made deals with myself to cope from day to day. Minute to another sometimes. So now I can say that I am really good at waiting. I told to myself that one day I will not feel like this.I will just have to wait for that day. So to fool everyone, I went to school, studied, traveled, got a job, well few of them... Made sure I was able to help others and took help if it was offered. Just to make the time pass faster. Now I am doing my Master's degree in international business management and working online. Have I come out off the fog yet? I don't know. I have been too busy to think about you it. Well it is not the same fog as earlier at least.

    Hmmm. I had something else to mention as well, but since it is in the middle of the night here, I am not able to concentrate on the matter. Maybe I will post it tomorrow if I remember it :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope you do, Kasku!! This is so great because you do show us from your experience how you were down deep and did things to distract yourself, to move on, and slowly, almost despite yourself (or your circumstances), you have been rising and rising ever since. Maybe in the moments it feels so incremental it's almost negligible, but here you are, to our eyes, soaring high!

      Delete
    2. Oh, yes I learned from very young on that there is only one person I can count on taking care of me, and that is me. So when I thought I had survived and was finally free, I just froze. You know like after fighting for something so hard that you don't think you will ever get it, and then you actually do. After that there is nothing. No plans what to do next. So here the deals come in. I also concentrated a lot on consequences: if I do this what is the consequense of it. I made the decision to move in with my relatives and also the decision to move out. The moving out wasn't as easy as I was told I was not allowed to do so. Basically I decided that life can't be this bad, and that there will be a better times ahead. As long as I didn't do anything stupid, I could experience the good times. I have been really analytic from early on :))

      I wouldn't say that I have had depression when there has been an important period going on in my life. Nor has it been cause of growing. It just has been a precense in my life. I decided not to give it too much power, but have seen the use of it as a reflector. It is a very good tool when doing some personal comparing and contrasting. Also when you are feeling down, you have the time to do it. It really doesn't take too much energy, which I wouldn't have anyway. So it combines resting and using my brain quite nicely. I don't see it as a bad thing or incompatibility, but as a part of who I am and who I am today.

      I do admit that I have broken one deal that I made to myself. I am yet to see if I will regret it or not. I think I am still on the high of breaking it, and following a new plan to the letter to stop me of thinking too much about it. Probably once I move out from my sister's place and relax in my new appartment I will start to go through the possible consequences. Also, You can do amazing things with mirrors ;)

      Delete
    3. I really like your down-to-earth and sensible take on your experience. To me, there is so much valuable sense in your approach, despite the obvious emotional tolls. I hope you don't ever regret how you handled things -- you shouldn't! Although I guess depression can still set in after the big change because it was/is a big change. Crossing my fingers that it won't! Full steam ahead for you, Kasku!!

      Delete
  15. Souzan Rezai from Vancouver, BCJanuary 11, 2013 at 2:15 PM

    I really want to respond to this, Barb, because it means a lot to me, but lord organizing thoughts this kinetic (while sick) is hard!

    I completely agree with you, while also seeing it not be as easy to distinguish as set "change".

    I think what can make it hard to for some people, including myself, to understand WHY they are depressed, is because transitions can be a long and slow reveal. I think what triggers it into depression is self-awareness. As a society, we are trained to be the exact opposite of self-aware; we instead are trained to go along with, to follow, to fit. The minute we start to become aware of ourselves outside of that society, I think it's scary. Big changes or transitions in life does this, too. The loss of a loved one FORCES self-awareness. The change of any constant in our lives does this, and the reason- I think- society doesn't want to be self-aware is because it's fucking hard! Facing all of yourself, your fears and desires and truth is overwhelming, and rarely encouraged. Just as you said, Barb, who wants to leave their comfy, old self? What I love about viewing depression in this way is that you can then perceive depression as a great thing!

    Okay, I tried to explain why depression is a great thing, and have written and deleted so much craziness that I think I will just leave it at "depression can be a great thing! But I can't explain why."

    Oof. I'm spent. And may sound a bit ridiculous. In my defense, I'm quite sick and am likely not getting adequate oxygen through the congested-ness...

    so much love,
    Souz

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Right, right, right. Love this perspective. And also believe in it. Another meaningful addition to this tricky subject. For anyone looking for more of Souz's insight into this, scroll up to her response to Kelly from NJ. Thank you!

      Delete

We love it when you share your own stories and experiences! Welcome.