I'm at the start of a dark day. I can feel it. The darkness, sweeping in, avoidable; like the tide coming in on a beach.
If you have never suffered from depression, it is hard to understand. I am lucky. I get these days, rather than weeks or months. They happen now and again and they do not affect my life, much. I am thankful for that.
Earlier in my life, I went through a couple of years experiencing the darkness of depression. I would not wish it on anyone. So I am thankful. Because I know how bad it can feel.
But, this is not the point of this post. The point is how to explain what a dark day feels, to someone who doesn't understand depression. How you can have been having a fantastic day and then suddenly, it hits. The swift downward spiral. The way the next day, I am back to myself.
So let me try and explain. *This is only from my view point. How I feel. What I experience. It is different for everyone.
A deep seated sadness overwhelms you. There is no rhyme or reason. You could have been having the best day in the world. and then it hits.
Your heart hurts. Your soul hurts. Fot that time, you question whether you are really happy at all. Whether your life is just a mask to cover the hurt that is overwhelming you. You cry. A lot.
You are scared. That maybe this time. the pain will stick. That you will get stuck in this world of hurt. That you cannot escape.
You are angry. Because the day before, you were happy. Maybe even an hour before. A minute. There is no logic behind it and for a logical person like me, this infuriates you. You want to break it down and rationalize how you are feeling. But you cannot rationalize depression.
It is the kind of pain where you feel that nothing can save you. Your head is a black hole and you are falling down it; desperately trying to grab hold of something to stop your descent, but nothing is there.
You feel guilty. So guilty. Especially if you are normally happy. If you have a great life. You see so much suffering in the world and you think to yourself "Why do I feel like this? Others have truly terrible lives." That you are somehow indulging in a first world, inconsequential thing. Except it isn't inconsequential.
Again I say that I am lucky. Because when I had my couple of years of this, I understood why people tried to hurt themselves. Cut themselves in order to feel. Because I did it myself. I am lucky because what I did, didn't leaves scars. Yet again though. I feel guilty. Because if I had truly wanted to hurt myself, there would be scars. Feeling guilty because my pain did not leave a mark, Fucked up, isn't it?
You develop mechanisms of coping. You try to shield those around you from it. Because you know they will never truly understand. You tell yourself "Just get through this day and you will be ok".
So here I sit, typing away, telling you how my dark day feels. It is late. I am hopeful that tomorrow, the darkness will be gone. I am riding that wave, the rise and fall of pain that makes you want to curl into a ball and block the world.
But that is ok. You are allowed to block out the world. As long as, when you are ready, you come back it.
This is my explanation of my dark day. Like I said, it is different for everyone. But for those who do not experience it, but know those who do: you cannot help them. But you can understand. You can give them a hug. Let them deal with it. the way they know how to; but watch for the signs that it is overwhelming them.
Depression does not define who I am. It is a part of me that I deal with, but it does not rule me. Have compassion. Do not judge us. That is all we ask.