This is not going to be an intellectual, formal or factual post on depression, let me just clear that up right from the start. Not that I ever endeavor to write in those styles anyway.
I felt compelled to say my piece about depression, following the recent social media explosion on the topic due to celebrity suicide, but I could not find the right words previously. Sometimes feelings just need to simmer unexpressed for a while before they are ready to be digested and expelled.
This post is an expression of my desire to come away from too much psychological compartmentalisation and labeling. Depression is a state that affects the whole being but especially the mind, so do we really need to clog up the depressed mind with more facts, figures, science and information overload?
Many know my metaphysical and spiritual views on illness by now, and if depression is seen as an illness/disease, then I most certainly would not think to reduce the discussion of it to mere bullet points and overused, trivial advice.
I, like almost everyone, have experienced depression before; 2 or 3 times in my life it has hit me hard. I have also voluntarily worked as an online depression mentor before, to give back the kind of support I would have liked to have.
I have helped a few clients with depression, I have seen friends and family with depression.
My point is, over time I’ve reached certain views about it, and they may well change again over further time. I realise many would disagree with my current views, and I say this because I have come across people who vehemently and aggressively defend and protect their depression, as though it is a badge of honour.
I’ve heard defensive arguments about how it cannot be helped as it is a debilitating disease, and about how you can never be cured from it so you just have to try to manage it. Wow, what a living death sentence! I can’t believe I used to be of that school of thought, and I don’t deny that it is a torturous and wretched thing to experience, but the protection of it is a pretty good excuse to make sure that in future you might get hit with it again, as it’s a handy cave to hide in when things get too scary and painful and you don’t want to, or don’t know how to deal with certain things.
Yes, yes, You can argue that you’d never want to experience it again, and that it’s out of your hands, you can’t help it…but have you any idea how wily and tricky our own subconscious minds are? We can actually con ourselves into things in a way that causes us to really think we have no idea of it. We can always help ourselves.
I stopped being of that victim school of thought the more I learned about the mind, body and soul. I don’t care how many doctors and scientists wave their lab results at my face.
I became conscious of how afraid so many of us are of letting go of the things that we allow to control and define us. If you let go you might actually meet your real self; the one that’s been hiding in the darkness from the bogeyman, and you’d have to face how vulnerable and gullible you’ve been, mesmerised by the pied pipers music.
Our truth is also our greatest fear.
It is what you decide to believe it is, and I’m not poo-pooing it, I’ve been there remember?
I say it is not something that is outside of your control or that you have no choice over, although when it hits you it can feel that way. I also say that the more you try to defend and hold onto it, the higher its throne becomes and the more power it has over you…or should I say the illusion of power.
I believe almost all of us are depressed for a reason, though a doctor would tell you that some get depressed for no apparent reason…well no, it’s definitely not apparent to the outside world, and there’s only so far that the doctor can go with the diagnosis, there are things that go deeper. I wish the medical industry would put down their ‘weapons’ and microscopes and look around without a scientific viewpoint for once, and just feel what’s happening.
Pressure, pressure and more pressure all around.
Too many lives lived untrue in a web of falseness. How many of us can honestly say we live according to our natural callings, natures, missions and joys?
Depression and other mental illnesses become more rife as the years go by, as children are born into an era of IT overload and growing educational system pressures. They are told how to be and how to act and what to become or not…then labelled with all sorts of so-called illnesses when they don’t perform and are consequently drugged, institutionalised and reprogrammed; natures pushed down further.
Depression is not another medical illness that we must fight like all the other diseases we are told to fight against.
It is our spirits compressed, our natures repressed, our egos obsessed, our hearts distressed and our souls possessed.
Our minds ‘de-pressed’.
I am under no illusion that some ‘cure’ will ever be found in a lab.
Aged 19 I sat in a doctor’s office complaining of dark thoughts and panic attacks, it took less than 5 minutes for the doctor to prescribe me some pills to numb the so-called disease of depression in me. As I stood to leave, prescription in hand, she spoke with a mock maternal tone, ‘you won’t do anything stupid with those now will you?’
Are you as speechless as I?
I can happily report that after 3 months of those awful human nature stiflers/robot creator pills I chucked them out so I could feel again and never looked back. I felt my future depressions deeply and learned to understand what they were.
It is understandable that most of us find it hard to be anything but depressed, we are not truly taught how to listen to ourselves and how to be ourselves in acceptance, we have not been allowed to develop mechanisms for the understanding of our emotions and our instincts. So is it any wonder our minds cave in as a shut down tool, dragging us into darkness and doom, obliging us to feel the full force of our self-destruction? Some feel numb with depression, some feel sad, some cry, some stare at walls, some cut themselves, some sleep for days, some hang themselves…all just the result of our stuck, torn, imploding and lost selves. Even someone with a seemingly wonderful upbringing, and a seemingly wonderful life may not have accessed the little spark within themselves that causes them to live their desires, and may still succumb to depression.
What medical cure? What discovery of the causes of depression? I find that so deluded it makes me want to laugh and cry at the same time. Everything we need to know about ourselves is already within ourselves.
I said I wouldn’t give trivial advice, and I won’t. I will say this though…get real.
I mean really real, not the sardonic or pessimistic kind of real that shirks anything beyond the physical, material plane as an answer for depression, and not the ‘depression sucks I feel like shit and want to die and there’s nothing I can do about it’ kind of so-called real either.
I mean get real about you, yourself, your life and what being you is all about deep down. Get to know yourself and be in it for the long haul, it’s the longest relationship you’ll ever have, and there will be many bumps…are you going to tell yourself you have that disease that you can’t fix every time something hurts so that you can curl up and die in your mind?
I’ve learned to distinguish between deep upset and depression, and I’ve learned to accept how I’m feeling in the moment, react how I need to react, but not to pander to it unnecessarily for too long. It’s not a case of easier said than done, it’s a case of I’ve done it, and I’m saying it. Sleep on it, cry on it, and then work on it. Get deep down into that pain and stare it out till you understand it. You can’t do that if you succumb to it and numb it down.
With more open dialogue, gratitude, self-expression, and connection with yourself and others, would we have reason to feel depression? Or would we just occasionally feel a little down or sad when things aren’t peachy, and then work through it naturally?
Release, talk, cry, scream, laugh…let it out of yourself.
Then Give power to what you want, not what you don’t want.