Thursday, May 17, 2007

Confession

For several months I have been depressed. I was very good and telling myself it wasn't depression. In my mind depression has always equaled weakness and I am not weak. When I stopped going to the park to walk every day I told myself I was just taking a much needed break. When I stopped going out with friends I told myself I was too busy. When I stopped calling friends it was because I don't like talking on the phone. When the commercial about depression hurting everywhere made me cry I told myself I was just being emotional. After all, I was still laughing and smiling and no one seemed to notice anything was different so it was easy to pretend that nothing was. On the inside I was numb. Depression scares me because I don't understand it. I don't understand how I can be so happy about planning a vacation and yet feel so sad I just want to curl up on my bed and cry or how I can laugh hysterically and be on the verge of tears. I'm making choices now to help myself through. I started working out again. I'm talking to friends who have been there too. I'm choosing not to keep it a secret.

12 comments:

Kristen said...

I have been there, and it is hard, but you can make it through. Don't be afraid to get professional help; there is nothing wrong with that or you. Love you.

cv said...

Depression is real, and it is nothing to be ashamed of or feel weak about. It can be caused by any number of things.

I have seasonal depression, and every time I have surgery I get post surgical depression. Your body reacts to stresses in different ways, for some people that can trigger depression. It's a brain chemical thing.

Please see your physician. Depression is a real sickness just like a cold or strep or anything else that you would see a doctor for. You wouldn't tell someone with a broken arm to 'just snap out of it', so don't have those expectations of yourself with respect to depression.

Don't be afraid of it. Just act on it. Take to your doctor when you started noticing your sypmtoms, when they are the worst, etc. If your doctor gives you some kind of BS, go to a different one.

It's going to be ok.

Cara

Becky said...

thinking of you.
proud of you.

Sandra said...

Kristen, thank you. It feels good to know that others have been there and made it through.

CV, this is the first time I've ever suffered from depression. I know it was brought on by Pam's death. It's the first time I had to literally watch someone die.
Thank you for your advice. I am taking it to heart and will not just ignore this or push it away.

Becky, thank you.

cv said...

Because of my medical background I have been with many people when they died.

But I have also been a part of my darling grandmother's end of life, and helped my grandfather make decisions to not prolong her death. A very wrenching experience for everyone.

There are few worse experiences that we can face than this. Please make sure to get the care and support you need.

Kristen said...

A close friend of mine up here lost her mother-in-law in January...and then had a baby a week later. (You remember me talking about her on my blog probably.) She is still working through a lot of things, and she will be for a while.

I think you are in a similar situation. Pam's passing plus the changes and stresses (David's job changes, yours, moving, raising a pre-teen) are big deals.

Let us know if we can help in any way, okay? And I echo what Becky said.

E. Michelle said...

you know, i am totally an expert on this! no really, i consider depression the fifth member in my family. really, sandra, you are going to get through this just fine. let me know if i can help you in anyway, answer any questions/

Aola said...

Do you think it is partly because of our religious background that we try so hard to ignore our emotions? I've thought about it a lot. I have bouts of depression, often. I figure they are brought on by the hormonal/menopausal crap my body is going thru but I have decided not to just ignore it anymore. When I feel that way, I tell at least Mark how I feel. I am taking supplements that help.

We are strong, but part of that being strong it admitting when we need help.

You have a lot of people who love you and would do anything to help you.

If you need us SCREAM real loud!

Sandra said...

CV, you are right. It is one of the hardest things to go through. Knowing that she was not ready to go and remembering how angry she was that despite everything her body was failing is what I'm holding on to. I know I have to let that go. I have to accept the fact that many people are not at peace when they die. Many people die before they are ready.
Kristen, Your friend and I probably are going through the same things right now. Life doesn't stop when someone dies and it makes it all to easy for weeks or months to pass without really looking at the loss. Accepting that I'm allowed to hurt because of this helps. Knowing that I'm not the only one who's ever been there helps.
E, you always make me laugh even when you are being serious. The fifth member of your family is vacationing with me.:) I'm just trying to understand what depression is and maybe a little bit of why it is though that seems to be a broad subject.
A, I think religion or at least the religious situation I came from may play a role in my denial. There was always so much pressure to put on a happy face. More recently it's the pressure I feel as a mom. Who will be there to pick up the pieces if I fall apart? It also has a lot to do with the fact that her children seem to be handling it so well and moving on so quickly. Here I am the daughter-in-law, who am I to fall apart if they aren't? Logically I know that is crazy talk. I know that everyone expresses themselves in their own way and that on a more basic level their absence of emotion is far more devastating than an excess of mine, but it some odd way it just seems selfish of me to mourn so much when she wasn't my mom. I know that's crazy! But it's the dialog that goes on in my head. That's the heart of the problem. I wasn't allowing myself to really mourn the way I needed to. I've cried more in the last few days than I did the week she died. I've allowed myself to really feel the loss rather than push it away.

Kristen said...

Everything you say about how everyone else seems to moving right along and how you feel the need to mourn still...and how Pam was not ready to go--sounds so much like my friend's situation. You really are not alone!

cv said...

How tenaciously most of us cling to life! I remember my grandmother, even at 85 with all she had been through, 2 years of chemo, multiple surgeries and mountains of pain sitting with me on her bed right before that last big surgery. She looked at me and said "Cara, I don't wanna die, I am not READY TO DIE, not by a long shot!"

Those words rang in my ears as I sat by her hospital bed that final 3 days. If I could have transfused some of my strength into her I would have done it in an instant.

I know what you are going through. I am here in spirit with you.

McMom said...

I have been there too and was blessed to have Cara by my side through part of the worst part of it! Mine was triggered partially by my brothers death and being diagnosed with a pitutary tumor. (that is now gone!) Life on the outside was mostly wonderful and I didn't understand why I was feeling like I did. It was very real and not something I don't want to go through again, but there are wonderful options for treatment. I do not take anything for it now but, occasionally it trys to reear its ugly head again. Hang in there! I'll say a prayer for you!