Depression – Part III – Those Damn Dreary Days

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Does being depressed mean that you are always so down you can’t get out of bed?  No.  Going down the rabbit hole (Part I) has gradients.  We do suffer, at times, by getting lost in the endless blackness that can envelope us.  However, most days it is like we are in a fog.  It is those Damn Dreary Days that do us in!

Depression is more about feeling heavy – like you are carrying (or dragging) the weight of the world around with you.  You can function, but just don’t want to.  Everything is a negotiation – “I don’t want to get out of bed.  You have to.  I don’t want to go to work.  You have an important meeting today.  You have to.  I want to leave.  You have to stay until 5pm.  I’m tired.  Keep going.  I’m tired.  You can do this.  I’m tired.  Oh, just shut up!”  Does this internal dialogue sound familiar???

The most simple decisions are excruciating!  Like – what to have for dinner or what tv show to watch.  There are no large emotions that exist on these damn dreary days.  No real highs or lows.  No belly laughs and no grief or terror.  It is more like being in a state of  indifference.  At this point Eeyore looks like your best friend.  You can relate to the storm cloud that sits over his head.  Or the tone of:  “I just want to give up” that you hear in his voice.

Today is a fine example.  I woke up tired.  When I came back from a client, I met up with my ex who sent me into a spin about money.  Then I receive a personal note in the mail that leaves me feeling embarrassed – a bill that needs to be paid that I overlooked.  Ouch!  Then, to make matters worse, it is cloudy, dreary, humid, and starting to rain.  The weather now reflects my mood – lackluster, not motivated, and weary.  I want to escape.  A nap sounds great.  It’s a great day to hide.  Hide from my fear of not having enough money.  Hide from my humanness and imperfection.  My thoughts of working out or riding my horse go out the window.  The things that will most feed and nurture my soul are pitched for a long nap.  “What is this?” I ask myself.  “Why have I fallen under the thick spell of this Dreary Day?”

As I wake the next morning and see the clouds overhead, I brace for the impact of my indifference…again coming back to my question:  “What has triggered me into this place?” and “How the hell do I get out?!”  I realize that there IS a fear of enoughness – but that’s not it.  I realize that there IS an embarrassment piece – but that’s not it.  My real issue is that I have taken on my ex’s fear (a common theme in our marriage).  I feel helpless.  I am worrying about things I can’t control – HIS financial enoughness.

The truth is that my new business is growing, even in this economy.  The truth is that my partner’s business is growing too.  As a snapshot, we are doing well.  I choose to focus on my business and spend most of the day on the computer creating databases and other things that have been on my To Do List for a while.  This makes me feel empowered, busy, productive, and puts a positive spin on this dreary day.  By the end of the day my indifference has shifted to contentment.  By tomorrow the shift will be from contentment to joy.  Yeeha!

Depression is usually more about the fog than the blackness.  It is those Damn Dreary Days that can get us down!!