I recently heard about an acquaintance who had died. I did not know this man very well at all and only knew about this because of the business circle and so word got around. I was sad for the family and friends of this young man. Later one of his associates mentioned that he had died from depression.
“I am in that temper that if I were under water I would scarcely kick to come to the top.” ― John Keats
Now, being a person who suffers from “Recurrent Major Depression” I am aware of the stigma attached to depression. Those who don’t understand depression or have never had a depressive episode often just don’t get it. They are the ones who will tell others to “snap out of it.”
Depression is often not seen as an illness. People would rather say that a person committed suicide than say that a person died of depression. When people die of other illnesses, their deaths aren’t described in detail; just the name of their illness will be used yet not so with depression; there will always be the description.
“I thought the most beautiful thing in the world must be shadow, the million moving shapes and cul-de-sacs of shadow. There was shadow in bureau drawers and closets and suitcases, and shadow under houses and trees and stones, and shadow at the back of people’s eyes and smiles, and shadow, miles and miles and miles of it, on the night side of the earth.”
Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
My point is that depression is a real illness; people do die from it. It is not a feeling of being just sad or blue; it is a dark, and lonely place, which very few understand or even try to understand. Please be kind to those who suffer from it.
“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
This is the reason I started blogging. I found it to be a good way of telling it the way I see and feel it. The thing that makes me very sad, and lately especially, don’t know why, but when I look back and see what a deep dark hole I was in at one particular time, I feel so ashamed. Logically that is silly, isn’t it, because I should look back and think about how I held on with all my might… I should think that way, but I don’t.
I am grateful to have held on and that I was able to use the little courage I had to keep going.