My friend Sunny recently posted about her experience with depression on Facebook. What she had to say was so real, so authentic, and so moving, that I asked her if I could post it here. So many of us deal with this. As Sunny says,
You are not alone!
Thank you, Sunny Jones, for your willingness to share your experience, strength, and hope with others.
"Those of you who know me closely and/or have lived with me know I struggle with depression. It's mostly cyclical and a part of me always "knows" that it's not real but in the moment it feels very, very real. Much of what I deal with is self-esteem/self-image issues. I'm too fat, I'm not good enough, I'm not enough period, etc. You know...the stories.I'm not sharing this to ask for pity or a hand. I'm sharing because I want to tell you its no joke. Its real. So many of us deal with it. I'm grateful that for me it mostly isn't full time and that I get some relief. I can't imagine what it would feel like if it was 24/7.
Self-care helps. Yet, I struggle with knowing when I need self-care or even what that self-care is. Meditation, eating right, exercising, reaching out to those that love you and don't judge you helps, medication can help (although this last round it didn't...it made it much, much worse), counseling can help.
If you are struggling with this and it feels like the end of the road please, please reach out! People love you! If you are person that someone reaches out to...don't try to rationalize them back into reality. Certainly do share the good things in their life with them. But, remember many of us get it but those "mental gremlins" as my girlfriend calls them cannot be rationalized. They are a black hole that don't want to listen.
I'm at the tail-end (hopefully) of one of the worst experiences I have had with this so I'm not sure my rambling above makes sense but I've felt compelled to share.
So many of us are struggling and feel shame or are afraid to tell those around us...afraid to be vulnerable in our greatest time of desperation...especially when it feels like life isn't worth living...and we know it's not true but it certainly feels that way.
Reach out if you need it. Reach out if you know someone else needs it. Sometimes it's as simple as a hug at lunch when you are feeling overwhelmed. And, sometimes it takes much, much more. That's okay too."
Amber is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. She offers counseling for individual adults and clinical supervision for social workers. For fun, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, researching genealogy, reading, and dragon boating.
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