Afternoon, I’m depression with a touch of anxiety, and you are?
After the realisation that my 4 month continuous low mood, suicidal ideation and self harm may be more than a ‘rough patch’, I finally reached out for some answers.
A shaky walk to the doctors and a wobbly confession that things haven’t been so good lately, the doctor handed me a questionnaire to fill out.
Oh the questionnaire. I love questionnaires. Magazines that tell me which hand soap bests represents me, Buzzfeed tells me which doughnut best captures my essence; and this questionnaire would tell my doctor the severity of my internal turmoil. And in only 9 questions?! Fantastic.
It kind of reminded me of that game 20 questions where you can only ask yes or no questions to try and guess the object. Like if he made the diagnosis by question 6 we’d win a 3 night stay in Devon or something. That’s irrelevant…moving on.
Anyway, I completed the questionnaire, I handed in my answers, and my doctor said these exact words…”you are moderately-severely depressed with a touch of anxiety.” Now, maybe it was the giddy relief that what I’d suspected was corroborated by a medical professional. Maybe it was the weight being lifted that I was no longer alone with my thoughts, and I was being taken seriously and I was going to get offered help. Maybe it was because my doctor was so blunt and poker faced that when he gave me this diagnosis…I couldn’t stop laughing. And not a subtle-Hugh-Grant-in-a-romcom-charming laugh. Not and easily hid under my breath chuckle. This was a wailing, hysterics, banshee style laugh. It scared the doctor. It scared me. It probably scared all the ill and infirm in the waiting room. It was a cackle to be feared.
But isn’t that bizzare? That just sharing how I felt freed up the fog that colluded my thoughts long enough to make the most dad jokes of all dad jokes.
“You’re moderately-severely depressed with a touch of anxiety.”
“Hi I’m moderately-severely depressed with a touch of anxiety, who are you?”
It still makes me laugh. I’ve said before that the road to recovery is not the straight yellow brick road its painted to be, in fact sometimes it feels like the treacherous journey to Mordor (little Lord of the Rings reference for all you middle earth fans out there.) But recently, the road is getting a little less winding and the scenery is nicer. So I guess it’s just nice to look back and see the point that I got on this road to recovery. As difficult as the road is it’s a hell of a lot better than the dark, deep hole I was in before I got on it.
I say it with all my stories, I write because it’s therapeutic for me. So you may be reading this and thinking there is no point to these words. Or maybe these words will help you or someone you love with their winding road.