Tuesday, March 27, 2012

dark cloak vs rain

I confess...this isn't going to be a long post, I just don't have much in me, but I want to "talk" about depression.

I think people too easily confusion being depressed with being unhappy.  This distinction was on my mind today since I had a follow-up appointment with my general practitioner.  I'd gone off my antidepressant at the start of the year, a process that was pretty excrutiating.  As I dealt with the withdrawal, I cursed the idea of antidepressants. 

But then, I got depressed.  I felt this big dark cloak over me.  I was Eeyore with the gray rain cloud obscuring everything.  I simply felt dark and couldn't imagine any light.  Nothing made me smile.  I sucked it up and went back to the doctor.  I started on a new medicine and had a follow-up today after about six weeks.  The difference is night-and-day.  The medicine banished the black cloak.  I've realized that true depression can be akin to diabetes.  A diabetic needs insulin, I might need an antidepressant.

Of course, I've been pretty vocal about the fact that I'm in a LOT of pain.  Obviously, this doesn't make for a happy Rambler.  I am angry, I am tired, I am frustrated, I am prone to tears.  But, still, it is a compeltely different feeling that the depression.  No one would be chipper if they went from active and walking six miles a day to bed-ridden and struggling to even sit upright for more than a few minutes.

Lesson/Point -- Depression is a medical illness and should be treated as such.  Someone who is depressed cannot be expected to just "snap out of it" and depression is not a reflection on the overall state of a person's life.  You can have it all and still be depressed.  And you can have your depression under control and still be struggling emotionally.  Make sure your treatment matches your condition.  I'm treating the depression with medicine and I am working on my current emotional state by trying to get answers on the pain since that's the culprit...THE PAIN is the problem now and that's what I need help with, not my mood.

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