Sunday, March 4, 2012

Treading Water

You know what? Depression sucks balls. There are days (a lot of days lately) that I feel like depression is what’s running my life, not me.

When I visualize depression, I picture myself treading water. If I stop, I’ll sink below the water and drown. So I keep on treading, trying to keep my head above water. Depression is like that to me, a daily struggle to keep my head above water. There are moments, hours, even whole days or weeks, where it’s easy. But then there are the days when it just seems easier to stop treading and let myself sink below the water.

Those are the days when I can’t even be motivated to feed myself, even if I’m hungry. I’ve been having a lot of those days lately. I look at other people, and they seem to take care of the basics so effortlessly. They can keep their homes clean, get their work done, eat regular meals. Why is it so hard for me? Sometimes it almost feels like there’s something physical holding me down, preventing me from taking care of myself adequately.

Today has been one of those days. I desperately need to clean, and there’s a ginormous stack of grading on my desk that absolutely must be finished by Tuesday. I have a headache because I went too long without eating.

These kinds of days suck, and I’ve been having far too many of them lately. But I’ll keep on treading water. It’s the only thing I can do. Because there are always going to be bad days, that’s life. But there are always going to be good days too, and I keep on treading, hoping that soon there will be more good days than bad. And who knows, maybe today will turn out to be a good day after all. The day’s not over yet. 

UPDATE: It's amazing how little things can turn one's day around. I cleaned my bathroom counter (which really really needed it). A friend called and reminded me that I've had a big week (I finished the first chapter of my dissertation and presented it at a conference on Friday) and perhaps I needed a little time to decompress. And that it's not the end of the world if my students don't get their papers back on Tuesday. Today, depression didn't win.