Something about depression that I don’t think gets discussed enough is how it steals time from you.
That’s one of the ways that I can gauge if I’m in a depressive episode or not. When I look down and realize it’s the end of June when in my mind it’s still May, and I’m left here wondering where the fuck did June go?
June was stolen from me by depression and PTSD. I’ve had a spike in symptoms lately. I don’t need to go into why, that is unimportant. What is important is that a month has gone by and I wasn’t here for it and that’s upsetting.
When I’m in a depressive episode, all of my energy is expended just trying to survive the day without crumbling into a puddle. It costs a lot of energy to come across as a somewhat presentable human when I’m at work and all I want to do is scream and cry because everything hurts so much. It takes extra energy to stay focused at work and complete my tasks safely and effectively (I work in a lab). My mind tries to wander to the darkness. Sometimes the darkness screams at me and demands to be heard. Outwardly this can sometimes present itself in the form of a meltdown, panic attack, or simply an impatient and irritable attitude. Sometimes I’m able to mask it entirely and then collapse into a heap of a human when I get home.
I often feel a lot of anger toward my PTSD and depression. I hate them for stealing so much from me. I hate the fact that I have to battle them so heavily, even as someone who does cope with things in a mostly healthy way. I do my best to follow a safe and constructive path to healing. I try to find the right combination of meds, therapy, social activities, self care, etc. in an attempt to heal from this depression and PTSD.
Yet it continues to be a daily battle. I spend so much energy having to listen to my body and mind, making sure all of its needs are met. I try to honor my emotions and allow them an opportunity to be released. I allow myself downtime and rest. I meditate. I have an emotional support animal. I have so many different mechanisms and tools for coping, but still it’s a battle. And that can be so frustrating and defeating. I get consumed with fear that I’ll never overcome this and I’ll be stuck in this shit hole battle for the rest of my life.
I fear time will continue to slip away from me. That I will sleep through my life because I’m too depressed to be present; I’m too tired to be present. At what point does each day stop being such a battle? At what point will I get to feel like I’m actually participating in my own life, instead of sort of holding on while everything is going on around me. Sometimes everything and everyone feels so far away. It feels as if there’s this blurry, furious wall of emotions and pain blocking me from engaging with the outside world. I’m trapped inside, screaming.
I want nothing more than to be present and engaged. I want to experience true joy without looking over my shoulder, for fear of trauma coming back to me. I have such a deep rooted fear of loss that it’s challenging for me to allow anything in as a result. My fear has built this wall around me. It was built in an attempt to protect me, but instead I find myself feeling isolated and lost. So incredibly lost. Even when I’m surrounded by friends or family. I can feel so entirely empty.
There’s still a part of me that tries to look for Matthew to lean on. He was such a pillar of support for me. He was so grounding. He was my rock. And then he was ripped away from me. I don’t know how to reconcile that. What is a person supposed to do when their most grounding force was ripped away from them traumatically by a completely random, natural cause? My biggest support, my biggest love was lost within hours. With absolutely no warning. It’s been 2 years and almost 5 months and I’m still so utterly lost. I’ve improved in a lot of ways overall, but there’s still a huge gaping wound in my heart and soul. And lately, that wound is seriously hurting.