Sometimes once you’ve stepped out into the light and your eyes have become accustomed to the brightness, it’s easy to forget just how dark it was back in the tunnel. But this time, I want to remember. This time I want to hold on. Not enough to drag me back there. Not enough that I can’t venture too far from the mouth of the cave. Just enough that I can hold onto the compassion I’ve developed for my fellow sufferers. I want to remember that it is dark and scary and painful almost beyond imagination. And I want to stand as a beacon, shining out the message that you can move on beyond the tunnel of endless hell and depression. You can be happy again.
Of all the people I know who have depression, and there are a lot of them, I think I may have it the worst. Or if not the worst, then certainly in the worst five percent. What I’m trying to say is that I have a pretty good grasp of how appallingly unpleasant depression is. I get it. I’m not one of those people who gets a little sad from time to time. I am one of those people for whom depression becomes my world. I lose the ability to maintain friendships. I lose the ability to get out of bed and go to school. I lose the ability to think clearly. But it always ends.
Inevitably, after a long period of depression (the most recent lasting well over a year), I work my tail off in therapy and I keep meeting with my psychiatrist and eventually things level out again. Eventually we find the magic combination of meds. Eventually I find happy again. And when I find it, sometimes it’s even a little too happy for a while. Because my brain has been so programmed to accept the suck that when the suck is gone, it gets a little over-zealous in its production of feel-good and everything is hilarious and wonderful. It’s not like a bipolar kind of wonderful, it’s just a little more wonderful than is strictly necessary. And frankly, I’ll take it.
Things will level out again. I will be “normal” again. And so will you. Keep fighting. It’s worth it. Life is worth it.