Wednesday, May 18

Waylaying Depression

Sometimes I find myself staring out the window, crying... for no reason at all. It's a really interesting feeling - a sort of complete powerlessness over my emotions and a feeling of inability to do anything to change them. It feels so different - so strange, as if something has temporarily taken over my mind and sabotaged my happiness... and yet it's also all too familiar. I turn on music and do something productive, lose myself in something good, then find myself, again, staring out the window, feeling like I am totally lost, alone, and starting to feel the first premonitions of worthlessness.

I have two options at that point. At the edge of depression, I realize that I become desperate... and when I'm desperate, some of the choices I make aren't the best. But, in desperation, I can also find incredible strength of will... the courage to do anything that will bring me out alive.

Recently I've taken to drugging myself when I can feel it coming - in the form of adrenaline and endorphins. I grab my gym bag, an mp3 player, and go to the gym, forcing myself to pump iron and steel until sweat has mixed with tears and I know I'll be sore the next day... and I can feel the natural feel-good chemicals rushing through my blood and into my brain. Sometimes it takes a few hours. But eventually the newly induced chemistry wins out and I'm at least able to go home smiling.

That happened tonight. I was staring out the window... and thankfully, I had a gym bag already packed and no uncancellable plans.

I look back at how I felt just a few hours ago... and I'm amazed at how much my choices affect my mind and my wellbeing.


  1. You know I think there are alot of people out there that have bad days because of our environment. The outside weather is what I mean. Its May 18 and snowing and that may just be too much for me (-but I also know I will be running late tonight to feel like I was able to get out). For some it is true unhappiness, no self-esteem, or lack of self-worth. It is frustrating to want to be and do so much but feel like it is unreachable. These are the most vulnerable days-Satan is knocking on the door and because that state of mind is so enveloping and so easy to wallow in that is where we stay for a while. I have a "go-to" movie when these days are here. I put that in and laugh *eventually* or my "go-to" music in the car. And I know that when I sing with the music I am getting better. I guess what I am saying it you have a great "go-to" already. Know by being aware of what you need is half of the battle! Everything is half way better as soon as you take back control.

  2. You might also consider chemicals of a different kind. If this is a constant battle for you, some SSRI's (to help you hold onto the serotonin your brain already makes) might be a tool to put in your arsenal. In my depression, I resisted the idea of medication for months and months. Only a few days after finally going to see my doctor, when the pills were starting to kick in, I had two realizations that floored me: The first was, "So this is what being happy feels like. I can't believe I'd forgotten." The second, "Wow. I had no idea the depression had gotten that bad." I couldn't believe how horrible my old "normal" had been––amazing what you can get used to.

    I was only on them for a few months, but they definitely gave me some breathing space, where I had room to think hard, make some tough decisions, and finally get my feet back under me.

    What you're describing––crying for no reason––emotional responses that do not match the circumstances––these are major warning signs. Please don't ignore them. While I know there's a stigma associated with mental illness and its treatments, don't rule out any approach that might help. Seeing my doctor saved my life.

  3. It's true that the best thing for feeling hopeless and/or worthless is to take action. Good for you to recognize the warning signs and have a plan already in place.

  4. I think that what you are saying makes a lot of sense. You are going though a tough time right now. While I have chosen a different course of action than you, and shed myself from the church, i respect your decision to remain part of it.

    Anywho...just wanted to say that. Glad that you are feeling better tonight.

  5. I'm glad I found your blog. Love to you, my friend.

  6. I came across your blog a few times. The first time I read it I was pretty shocked. I was shocked that someone could be so strong to not give into something so strong as this. Then today, I read the post to Mom and Dad and I cried. I can't even imagine the daily struggle you must live with and yet the ability to be so strong in the midst of it. I commend you for your strength and your testimony. I know that the Gospel is true, and I truly believe that when this world is over we will all have a clear knowledge to why we had to experience the trials we did. I believe that as weak or as bad as an individual can be, is as strong and good they can also be. You are beating odds, and you must be a choice spirit of Heavenly Father or he wouldn't have given you such a debilitating trial. Please don't give up the fight, I know it's hard. I struggle with a different trial, I struggle with addictions. Also, hard, but I know that all the trials we face will exalt us in the world to come if we can endure them. Our life on earth is such a small glimpse of time and if we can realize that these struggles will be just a fraction of time and will determine our happiness forever then I think it makes life just a little easier to face. Keeping Eternity in perspective always. "Pray always that you may come off conqueror; yea, that you may conquer Satan, and that you may escape the hands of the servants of Satan that do uphold his work."

    Be strong and know that people in this world care about you and more importantly that Heavenly Father is there and Christ has endured your pain.

    Thank you for helping Saints that may also be dealing with such turmoil.


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