Webster defines depression as ‘a psychoneurotic or psychotic disorder marked especially by sadness, inactivity, difficulty in thinking and concentration, a significant increase or decrease in appetite and time spent sleeping, feelings of dejection and hopelessness, and sometimes suicidal tendencies’. Hmmmmmm. Check, check, check. Let’s see, yep. Check, check and, oh……. yeah, check.
But what do I have to be depressed about? If you’re reading this, you know my story. You probably know it all too well. No matter how rapidly I may flip through the book, I am stuck on this same page in my novel. The same page in my life. My sad, pathetic, miserable, little life. OK, so I am being melodramatic, but if only to make a point. That point being I can’t get over this heartbreak and it’s impacting everything that I do and who I am. I’m depressed.
But I try to put it all in perspective. I try to look at the bright side and search for the silver lining. I lived more in these past three years than I thought was possible. I learned how to be a better person (I like to think at least), I learned to be a better dad, and how to be there for my friends the way they have been there for me. Still, above all that, I remain depressed.
Yet I remind myself that I am so blessed and so lucky. I have a career that right now pays me way more than I deserve to be paid. My kids are happy and healthy and sleeping safely in their beds right now. With the exception of the occasional joint discomfort, I am myself physically healthy, and I have material possessions to make me comfortable. Still the sadness and anxiety and everything else remains.
I know my situation could be significantly worse. I could be one of the millions of people impacted by Hurricane Katrina. I could be a single-mom asked to juggle her kids’ school schedule, her work schedule and a personal life all at the same time. I could be a parent sitting in the recovery room of a hospital waiting for her child to wake up from his surgery. Or worse, I could be a parent dying inside with anxiety and pain because their child has gone missing. No matter what life throws my way, no matter what the hardship, no matter how deep the pain, I know that my life is still better than that of 99% of the other people on this planet. Yet still I’m depressed. Fuck, it’s 1:00 AM and I am no where near being asleep!
Webster defines obsession as ‘a persistent disturbing preoccupation with an often unreasonable idea or feeling’. Yeah, one more big checkmark for that one. Except I don’t think the object of my preoccupation is disturbing or unreasonable. But it is excruciatingly persistent, and it is this persistence that has lead me to my depression. It is the fact that I can’t shake the idea or walk away from the dream. No matter how hard I try, I always come back to the same thought. I always fall back to the same belief. I still want to believe in things like destiny and fate. I still want to believe in the concept of soul mates and happily ever after. I want to believe in dreams and fulfillment, but it gets harder and harder every day. …..and it’s depressing the crap out of me.