I’ve been reading a lot about high functioning Depression lately, this is where someone may still be able to get up and go to their demanding, prestigious job, be in a romantic relationship, post the believable smiley photos on Instagram, regularly get together with their friends, and generally handle all the logistical adulting stuff of their life. Passing for someone who doesn’t “look depressed.” But inwardly, this same person may be gripped with a challenging set of symptoms invisible to those of us who love and know them.
Majority of the time can do this, I get up put on my make up which is my warpaint to be able to face the world, the more make up I have on generally highlights to myself what I already know and that is that my mood has dipped. So in my mind the more make up I wear will hide how sad I am feeling inside to the outside world and nobody will suspect a thing! Unless I mention it majority of people don’t know I suffer from depression, and when I say I do. I’m met with a surprised eyebrow raise and the ever so familiar ‘You don’t look like you have depression’ I don’t know what a person with depression is supposed to look like? We are all just ordinary people! Are we suppose to have a little rain cloud following us around to let people know? I go to work and get through the day and come home, I get home usually around 4:30pm and have been putting my pj’s on and going straight to bed the past few days (I hear your gasps at this horror! No judgement!) Because by the time I’ve adulted my way through the day, I’m exhausted and my depression just takes over. However these are still productive days as I have gotten out of bed, taken care of myself, fed myself and been to work. Not all my depression days look like this, sometimes they take a very different turn.
On my depression days, I will wake (I say wake, I never really managed to sleep) I spent all night tossing and turning barely managing to get a consecutive 30minute sleep let alone anything more, so I am exhausted before the day has even begun, after a while I will make myself go and get some breakfast as I can no longer ignore the growls from my stomach. On days like this is when I normally end up having biscuits or chocolate for breakfast because I think it will make me a bit happier, it never does as I always instantly regret it because I’m supposed to be doing Slimming World (that’s another thing to be sad about!) and it’s not healthy or good for me etc, So the tiny thing I just did to try and make myself feel better ends up in a vicious cycle making my depression grip me even tighter.
I usually end up hibernating in bed ignoring everything and everyone watching continuous tv shows I’ve seen a thousand times before, when the message on Netflix appears asking me if I’m still watching; see even Netflix thinks I’m lazy! By now I feel incredibly guilty at this point in the day, usually late afternoon. As the only thing I have accomplished is watching a marathon of pointless tv shows and ignored all the housework that needs doing and therefore beating myself up further about how useless I am. Depressions really got a grip now.
I manage to drag myself out of the house and go for a walk and this is when I realise that there is always something beautiful in a day, I just have to open my eyes further than myself and realise that. I am not all the horrible things I have spent the day telling myself I am. Because as long as I’m still breathing and still waking up to a new day, there are so many reasons for me to be thankful and happiness can be found in the simplest of places.