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!

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Miracle?

Maybe it was the cold wind on my face. Maybe it was my heart beat decelerating, palpable in my chest, after just ducking out of a strapping headwind. Or perhaps it was the stillness of the monochromatic woods, sunshine beaming through leaf-less trees, as I whirred along on my bike. I'm not sure why it occurred right there, suddenly, at that precise moment Monday afternoon, in those woods 2 miles from my home, but it did. Like a shock from beyond I realized, "I feel better."

Probably it occurred because I felt joy. At that moment I was enjoying my bike ride. Rather than just doing, I was feeling. I may have even said it out loud, "I feel better."

Miracle is a strong word. What works for one may not work for another, and previous success doesn't guarantee future success. However, that moment Monday afternoon, a few hours after my third ketamine treatment, continues to feel miraculous. Ketamine, for me, has been a miracle.

As it did in 2017, ketamine once again yanked me back from the edge of the cliff just as I was beginning my forward lean. It's unfortunate I had to endure hours of frigid darkness and cold contemplation, staring into the abyss, prior to the ketamine lasso. But as it was in 2017, that's the reality today. It's beyond unfortunate.

I feel better. The reality of the limited availability and expense of ketamine will perhaps be debated in a future post but not today. Today I'm just going to be. I'm focusing on feeling. Joy is nice. Gratitude is nice. But even anger, sadness or fear would be okay. I'm so relieved to be feeling. I'm grateful to be feeling. I'm feeling again. That is a miracle.

10 comments:

Amy said...

This post made me smile. I'm so happy you had that rush of feeling again, Etta. I may have said here before but, while I don't have chronic depression, I've had two episodes of deep, crippling, beyond dark depressions accompanied with acute panic attacks that rendered me agoraphobic for a while. I still remember both times that my medication started to work finally after months and weeks of feeling like I was in Hell and had no way out. Once was in college when I was sitting in class and suddenly I looked at the chalkboard in my Humanities class and thought "I feel....great". It was so sudden it was bewildering. My very deep depression in 2011 was a slower crawl out of it, but I remember walking around a nearby track to my house and seeing the outline and color of the leaves again for the first time. That tree and those leaves looked infinitely beautiful. And I too realized I was feeling better.

To me...it IS a miracle that there are treatments for this horrible illness that can help us climb out of it and see the leaves again...feel the wind in our faces. And just feel human again. My gratitude for it all these years later is still prominent and profound.

etta said...

@ Amy: YES! You get it! That is exactly what this experience was like! Sudden and profound. Seeing colors, feeling the wind and temperature, hearing clearly, and experiencing joy! BOOM! So strange, but so wonderful. Thanks for sharing your story. I didn't expect anyone else would have experienced something similar, but DAH! Why not?

Unknown said...

Yeah!!! So happy for you!

Charly said...

I have decided to do this TMS treatment since it is not invasive, The medication no longer has an effect on me, and in some cases I have suffered from some side effects, thanks to the medication I was consuming.

etta said...

@ Charly: Good luck. I had some success with TMS in the past. Fall of 2016 and/or Spring of 2017 if I remember correctly.

Katy said...

YESSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!

Wendy Love said...

Absolutely wonderful news! Love that you share the good news as well as the bad. I can remember moments like that too, when a depression would start to lift, it was as if the sky suddenly got bluer! So happy for you. I have always found that a little change for us is really a big deal. Hang in there. I will continue to pray for you.

etta said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
etta said...

Thank you Katy and Wendy. It's nice to share the good news, too. That's what LIVING WITH depression is all about, right? Good, bad and indifferent.

etta said...

Note to RainbowWarrior: Thank you for your comment. I did not post it, as it contained your email address, but I read it. I'm glad you found inspiration here.



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