Please open your hearts and minds for our ‘Fight With Us | #DCfC‘ guest today, HastyWords. She is brave enough to open up about her battle with depression and share some of that experience with you here.
He Is A Killer
I’d heard of him, but to be honest, I didn’t believe he existed. He was a made up figment of people’s imagination. Someone an individual could blame so they didn’t have to be responsible for their actions.
Sometimes he was a she. Many times IT was just an IT. A faceless monster. A demon. The devil himself.
I can’t tell you the first time I heard his voice nor can I tell you the first time I saw his face. He introduced himself very slowly. In fact, he was so subtle he’d already been in my life several years before I recognized his presence.
My friendships started feeling more stressful and I was beginning to dwell on things I couldn’t control. My anxiety was showing up more often and he was always there inciting an angry mob in my head. I started hiding in restrooms and in my car just so I could cry. I was ashamed and embarrassed of my feelings so I hid them behind a big bright smile and some ridiculous humor.
He knew all my secrets and began using them against me. He was an expert at picking apart my insecurities and turning them into living nightmares. It wasn’t long before he systematically began turning me against all the things I loved and enjoyed.
It wasn’t until he tried to tell me my daughter, family, and friends would be better off without me that I knew I needed help. It was a close call actually. He almost convinced me. I had never been closer to not existing as I was in that moment. Fortunately, I reached out and got help. I realized hiding him was going to destroy me. I had to expose him, even though he was a part of me, and diminish his power. He was the product of a chemical imbalance I could not fight alone.
His voice is my voice but his face is that of the man who raped me. I do not have depression because I was raped but depression does use my trauma, shame, regrets, and insecurities to imprison me.
We are regular people fighting an invisible illness. We have been called negative, weak, pathetic, a lost cause, sad, selfish, and attention-seeking. In reality, depression hides our true selves under a blanket of darkness. Depression is exhausting and causes us to sleep more and blinds us to the world we live in. We are simply unable to function as ‘normal’.
Science has yet to fully understand depression. We cannot prevent depression but there are some medications that can help. It takes time and effort to find the right one(s). Every person is different.
What can we do for those suffering from depression? First, understand it is a legitimate illness. Make the distinction between sadness and depression. Sadness is an emotional response to an explainable event. Depression is a chemical imbalance with unexplained emotional responses.
Help us fight the stigma that people who are depressed can’t work and aren’t reliable. Being able to be open about our illness allows us to actively seek help. Depression can be managed but we need to feel safe enough to seek the help we need.
Depression still visits me. He will always be a part of my life. But I’ve learned a few things since I have sought help. Much like the little monsters in Gremlins came with rules, there are certain rules I follow for my depression. I don’t give him alcohol. I steer clear of recreational drugs. I talk to people so they know I am fighting his influence. I try to get plenty of sleep. I don’t listen to sad music. I avoid trigger conversations that might feed my insecurities. I see my doctors. AND I take my medications and I stay on them.
If I have to dance with depression then I am damn well going to lead from now on.
Hastywords is an anxiety driven over-analyzer. With a mind full of rainbows and devils she began
giving her thoughts a way out of her head by writing poetry. Writing began as therapy for her depression and helped her gain perspective by putting her tears and laughter into words! You can follow her journey at Hastywords.
Purchase her books, The Darker Side of Night and Depression’s Dance, here.
Darker Side of Night – Modern day poetry from the shadowy corners of an overactive imagination. Whether we embrace the night or we fear it, one thing is for certain: almost anything can be hiding in the dark. Take a peek at what is hiding in wait.
“I found this extremely raw and emotional and at times even haunting. The writer has no shame or hesitation in sharing her vulnerability with the reader. It’s endearing and inspiring. Loved it all. A must read!~ Anthony Ortalano”
Depression’s Dance – Depression has a way of sneaking into your life and before you know it you are caught in a dance you can’t cut away from. This is about my dance with depression complete with the moments of desperation as well as the moments of hope.
“In Depression’s Dance, depression is also given a voice, “I have convinced you to believe you are broken beyond repair.” It speaks throughout the book as an enchanter, luring Hasty to walk away from those she loves, from her desires and things that make her happy, and essentially her life. Hasty skillfully creates the voice as if it is spoken just under the surface of the conscious, sensed, but unheard. It implants negative perceptions and sabotages the ability to dispel them. While depression is an underlying influence which aims to destroy her, Hasty’s own voice is shared through her poetry. ~Sage Doyle”