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I
wasn’t going to put this up doubt creeped back into my head again on
what people would think but that is the problem from the start with
the subject and I am not one to shy away from a challenge or hide who
I am. There was a brief thought of “What if people judge me on
this” well you know what what if they do? It won’t make any big
difference in my life apart from showing me who my friends are. I do
feel selfish for feeling this way from time to time I know people who
are facing much bigger challenges but those people know I will do
anything for them I will do anything I can to help them out any time
they ask…they know I love them! They show a strength of character
that is indeed a rarity these days and are an example to us all.

So
bugger it here it is warts and all…

I
have talked about depression before but only touched on the subject
very briefly but what I said about it still being a taboo subject in
Britain was true. It is still looked upon as a weakness but I can
assure you dear reader that could not be further from the truth it
takes great strength to get through a bout of it strength that you do
not realise you have and strength that you truly believe you do not
posses.

Each
person that suffers from it will find their own way of dealing with
the coping mechanisms that over time help you cross back to feeling
something close to normal. One of mine I am sure you wont be
surprised to hear is writing. I have not published much about my
fight not due to the fact I am embarrassed by it but because I have
been lucky enough to be the right side of dark clouds for many years
now so have not found the need to or had a great deal to say on the
subject from the first persons point of view which has been good for
me! These days I can see the signs in myself that the clouds are
gathering so I exercise a bit more rest up well and keep away from
electronics until the storm passes in a day or two once again
returning my life back to my normal.

There
are times though when this is not enough and I am in one of those
times as I write is. Exercise has not helped me nor has reading this
is just sometimes the case there are times when the clouds gather and
regardless of what shelter you try to make the storm just grows and
sucks you in. Others that suffer from this will be able to relate
but I am trying to put it into words for those that seek foresight
and maybe want to try to understand what it feels like for a loved
one or friend that goes through it.

As
I write this evening the storm pulled me in a couple of days ago and
even though I can still function (as most people do!) it takes all of
my strength to get through the day hiding how I feel from work
friends and colleagues. Wifey of course knows because when I get
home I just slip back into myself as I try to heal my head and this
is the worst part for me seeing the worry in her eyes that the really
bad early days when this first ever hit me nearly loosing myself in
the process because I had no idea what was going on along with zero
coping mechanisms in place let alone much of an idea of how I got so
broken so quickly will one day return again. I wrote a piece back
then over 12 years ago that when I read it through now it makes me
shudder how lost that I was and scares me how self destructive I
felt. Maybe in time I will put that out there for folk to see but not
yet it really was my mind on a sheet of paper it’s really the raw
mind of a broken me. That was the first and thankfully the worse
time that took a couple of years of anti depressants to get me back
onto the right path once again, nothing since has been on that level
but it still scares me that sometimes like right now I cannot control
it completely.

So
how does it feel? I have already talked about the storm clouds that
develop to suck you up and into the chaos they cause but that’s just
the beginning once you have been pulled into the storm the noise
inside your head can be so loud it’s deafening and just after that I
feel that I am slipping down into a deep ravine sized rut sliding
down it’s steep sides grasping for a hand hold as the ground keeps
passing through my fingers but I have managed to snag a hand hold
right now I always do at some point. As I lay on my stomach pressed
against this cliff face clinging onto the fragile handhold I have
managed to secure I always manage to look up and see how far I have
slid. Why would I want to know how far I have crashed down? Because
for me I now know how far I have left to climb back out again and
compared to how deep the raving below me is I always know deep inside
I could have slipped much further I have been there before I know
it’s depths and thankfully I have never hit the bottom…I would
never want to. So here I cling in full knowledge of the climb that
lies ahead but even though I know where to go and how high to climb
it can take time to gather the strength to start the trek upwards.
The biggest problem can be the baggage I am carrying.

I
don’t know what exactly triggered me this time there is nothing wrong
in my life. I am a big fan of figuring out my triggers I do know
them well most of the time and looking back over the last few weeks I
have fought off a nasty virus that hit me harder than anything has
for over ten years add to that long hours at work a new project on
the driveway and doing too much too quickly not giving myself enough
time to recover physically from that bug I suppose I have pretty much
hit the nail on the head whilst writing it all out…see this works
for me quite well.

The
irony of it all is you create the baggage that tries to pull you
deeper into the ravine. You doubt yourself not just in the normal
way we do it but you literally start to destroy yourself about the
choices you are making or have made. All your mistakes come back to
haunt you the things you could have done better for the ones you love
the decisions you made that had a negative impact on life. Why did
you buy that car ten years ago that broke down? why didn’t you give
that person a bit more time instead of cutting them short? Where was
your patience when the kids needed you to talk? Why are you just
sitting here not communicating with anyone else who loves you that
are sitting in the same room? Why are you so damned tired? Why are
you so damned weak just look at yourself…why would anyone love you?

Baggage.
Most of it nonsense. What about the good you have done with your
life? You cannot see that when you are clinging to the cliff face
with a mountain to climb ahead of you.

It
falls away in the end though and if you are reading this suffering
from storm take solace in the words from someone who joins you more
often than he likes but not as bad as he once did…the baggage falls
and the storm does indeed pass but you have to keep moving both
literally and mentally. You have to put one foot in front of the
other when all you want to do is hide in bed until the sun doesn’t
come up ever again. You have to keep moving it really does wonders in
the end. Walk around then get dressed and go outside and walk around
some more. Do it each day it doesn’t have to be far but you have to
move because when you do you start to climb back up the ravine the
baggage starts to fall away one piece at a time. You are going to
miss a hand hold every now and then taking a bit of a slip back down
now that’s scary as hell but you have already caught hold again so
keep moving.

It
will not be quick there is no set timeline even for you when you have
climbed this face before because it lives and moves around each time
you slip onto it but that doesn’t matter because the baggage changes
but the climb always remains. That is your normal you are not weak
because you need to climb again oh no you have a strength so deeply
ingrained in you to cope that you know exactly where you are you are
on that cliff face again with a long climb ahead but you have climbed
it before you know the way is up and you know what holds you back
just keep moving. You have climbed back in the past and it took a
strength you didn’t know you had but this time around you are one up
on before because now even though it doesn’t feel like it right now
you know deep inside you have that strength you need after all you
are already holding onto the cliff face refusing to slip down any
further.

nickysmith.me

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