Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 19 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Nonsensical illness

The nonsensical illness continues today. I've appreciated your comments on my last two posts. I've been feeling isolated and totally alone lately. The noise in my brain seems so unique, in the worst possible way, that it really helped to hear some of you could relate. I had no idea! However, I'm also very sorry any of you can relate!

Today, I face questions of reality. It simply doesn't make sense that I can go to work, or to a meeting, or to a party and outwardly function as a healthy, happy human. Yet, inside there is only death, negativity, fear and sadness. It's nonsense! I feel like I'm leading a double life, and it makes me question the reality of this illness.

If I'm able to function so well despite the turmoil I feel, especially when alone, is it possible I don't really have depression at all? Is this just some elaborate ruse of which I've become convinced. The people "on the outside" wouldn't recognize the etta I know. Only a very select few even get to see her--mostly professionals--and even they don't get the full story. It's just too unbelievable. How can I smile while saying I feel like shit? How can I crack jokes when escape and death occupy my brain? It doesn't make any sense.

I am open and honest with people, yet I am always protecting, too. I'm protecting myself, and I'm protecting them. The disconnect between my shell and my core is so great, if I were truly honest, I'm afraid nobody could believe me. "Well you don't look like you feel like that. You don't act like you feel that bad. If you truly felt like that, there's no way you'd be able to work or run or..." At the same time, I don't want to add burden to those around me, even the pros. It's just too much.

I think I'm also ashamed of my sadness, lethargy, and hopelessness. I still think I should be able to make myself well. Just do it! I guess I tend to downplay the healthy actions I take while ruminating on the continually recurring negative symptoms. That's the problem, isn't it, the symptoms continually reoccur. And for whatever reason, this time I don't feel I have a lot left with which to fight.


Anonymous said...

Thats exactly how I feel much of the time; like how could anyone believe how bad I truly feel inside, when I force myself to fake it thru each day!! Thats totally me...

Anonymous said...

You're totally captured how I feel! I often feel like I am leading a double life or have a split personality exactly because I don't know how I seem normal on the outside (or just a little "down") when on the inside I'm completely unhappy. Then I feel like I'm being overdramatic when I try to describe how I feel on the inside, precisely because I can still smile and function. And I feel exactly the same about protecting others! At least we're not alone....

etta said...

Thank you both for your comments. Once again, readers like you relating to what I write relieves some of my angst.