Depression is not a moment of sadness. Depression is a vicious beast. Depression wipes life from your spirit like a giant sucking sponge.
People who have never been depressed don’t understand. Shake it off. Cheer up, take a walk, do something –fill in the blank here- and you’ll feel better. What a bunch of crap.
I’ve had the luck or unluck to have survived bouts of depression several times in my life. I say lucky since it was intermittent. I say unlucky because it takes a big chunk from my life before I recognize I’ve fallen into the black hole again. Many people aren’t as lucky and suffer from a chronic condition.
I’m not going to give you a clinical description. I find myself tired for no reason. I have trouble focusing, yet am irritable, short-tempered, but the temper doesn’t last since it takes too much energy. I overeat, but I’m not hungry. I can’t write. And that is the big tell for me.
This time I asked my doctor about it. To my surprise, he took the time to ask me about my symptoms. After a few minutes in thought, he suggested I think about a prescription. Something short-term to snap the cycle. Hmmm. Since I hate medicine, I said maybe. When I return for my check-up we’ll talk again. Just knowing he listened, helped me. So does writing this.
I noticed on my various loops other writers’ blogging about depression. Sharing emails about the pain and loss. I realized it seems to be insidious with creative people. Are we more vulnerable because of our imagination? Is it because our lives are spent in a world no one else sees until we create it? Is it because we are by nature loners?
I don’t have the answers. I did get up this morning and worked on a project. It made me feel good and I savored that feeling.
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9 thoughts on “Depression is a writer’s curse by Barbara Edwards.”
For me, medication was a last resort. I fought taking it for many, many years, trying other things instead. I also have CFS which brought on my depression in the first place. I do agree with you that it seems creative people are more afflicted–perhaps because they’re more sensitive? It’s difficult for me to write when I’ve fallen into a bad episode. I’m lucky in that I have a ten-year-old son who forces me to get out of bed! Not to mention a diva Chihuahua.
You are not alone in your depression. I have it too. As much as I hate it, I wouldn’t give it up if it meant I was no longer creative. I take the good with the bad. Also, I never wanted to take meds either, until my hubs reminded me that depression ~ in my case anyway ~ has a physical root. If I had high blood pressure, I’d take medication. So I take the meds and am much happier.
Congratulations on finding what works best for you. Good luck.
(((Barbara))) Know you aren’t alone, and there is help. Sometimes it takes meds, sometimes not, but silence is a guaranteed way to make it keep getting worse.
I suffered periodic bouts of depression for years, but after my dad passed away… Wow. Horrible isn’t even in the same universe. I’ve been on antidepressants now for 11 years. Some work better than others, and most eventually stop working as well after a time.
5 years ago, my doc found a combination that lets me lead a fairly normal emotional life, as opposed to the zombie-like detachment often associated with antidepressants. It stopped working once, but after a 6 month break on zombie drugs, I tried it again, and it worked once more.
These days, Hubby has a list of things to watch for that might indicate I’m getting worse again. If you can, have someone close to you watch you for symptoms that you might need more help. When everything you think is skewed by that mask, it’s hard to know if something is true, or if it’s just your own warped perception, so you need someone you can trust to help you watch you.
I give you credit, Kenra, for finding something that works for you. I know how hard this is. Bless you.
Been there… You’re right, depression takes away the ability to write. Or at least it doesn’t help, especially with focus issues. Be careful… some anti-depressants can thin the blood–not a good thing. I was on one and bruises appeared just by looking at me. After that, well you can probably figure it out. Bless you. I hope you feel better soon.
So far I’ve managed to avoid the medicine this time. Am feeling better and sharing has helped more.
You have valid reasons for being sad. Remember this too shall pass. That always helps me when I’m down.
Thanks, Kate for caring.