“What is depression? …life wishing to express itself but being pressed down.”
James Hollis, Ph.D, author of Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life
A young woman in the midst of defending her Ph.D thesis came to me recently and said she didn’t think she could do it any more. Life felt too difficult, nothing was easy or joyful or even hopeful. She couldn’t find any meaning to her day in day out world.
She was a lovely healthy young woman with the promise of a wondrous future. Her thesis topic made sense to her and she was receiving support and encouragement from all the right places. And still, it just didn’t seem worth the effort.
Do you remember feeling that way: It just doesn’t seem worth the effort? No matter what those around you are trying to tell you, it simply seems to hard!
When I feel like that I tend to blame myself: I’m lazy, I’m not smart enough to do the job, I’m ashamed, I’m, I’m…..whatever. But it is me I blame.
We are responsible for what we feel and what we do about that. But hang on…..there is just so much responsibility one soul can manage. Some times it is fair to say, “Stop! Enough! I have had enough. Please, just give me a break.”
I think most of us have a tendency to expect a great deal out of ourselves. I think we often get into one- step- in- front- of- the- other mode and soldier on like good little troopers. We stuff down, shut down push down our exhaustion or feelings of being overwhelmed, sadness, shame; keep it to ourselves, and dearly pay a price. That price often times becomes Depression.
Depression is exhausting and whips us around cruelly. Away flies our self-esteem in a nanosecond. Depression takes every bit of pleasure out of daily life as well as things we love to do but just become too gigantic to imagine. Depression longs to be seen, understood, loved, valued, regarded. Depression is big and looming, has glassy eye-sight, and stumbles when he walks. Depression moves from room to room and haunts endlessly.
Depression longs to fling away his gray and black cloak of doom and expose his pale skin and vulnerable heart. Depression is desperate and scared and waits for relief. Depression wants to be seen. And validated.
“It makes sense to me that this job is too difficult. It is a huge job and needs more than one person to do it. You need help and I understand that.” That is one of the things Depression wants to hear. Another thing Depression wants to hear is,”Tell me what it feels like. Cry all you want to. I KNOW this too shall pass. We will hold hands and come through it together.”
Depression yearns to be acknowledged, valued, respected, and held. In return, Depression is responsible for pouring out stuffed down, pushed down, shut down feelings. No longer can Depression withhold, hide, run away, paralyze, be hostile and angry. Two way street: I understand and listen. Depression is forthright and giving.
It is always easier when there is someone who will listen.
- I am grateful for the many listeners I have in my life
- I am grateful for those who trust me to listen to them
- I am grateful for Aimee’s consistent listening and loving skills
- I am grateful for a day of getting things accomplished and feeling good about that
- I am grateful for a very lovely deep night’s sleep, continuing with the essential oils.
- I am grateful for a healthy happy friendly life
- I am grateful for my lovely home.