On days like this…

“silhouette photography of man standing on corner of bridge” by Gabriel on Unsplash

On days like this, depression sucks. It really, really sucks. I’m writing this today on a low day — a day where my mood is in the gutter, my body aches from head to toe and everything around me becomes a blur.

On days like this, I usually stay inside my own head and self-reflect. I think about the people who I care about the most. I think about my wife, my daughter, my parents and my extended family. It’s hard not to think that I don’t have the ability to reach out and ask for help — because on days like this I feel that I can’t. And it makes me so incredibly sad. I’m so sad that on days like this, the only person I can relate to and talk about what I’m feeling is myself.

On days like this, that really sucks. When all you want to do is curl up in bed and wish you weren’t living through this hell — I’m deflated and let down that I can’t even count on myself to help me get through this day. I look for distractions — perhaps a book, or reading news articles on the web, or taking my dog for a walk, or getting in the car to go someplace fun and relaxing — but the overwhelming distraction on days like this is the feeling of worthlessness that I can’t. I simply do not have the physical or mental strength to get out of the house.

On days like this, the sun is shining. It’s a beautiful summer day and I’m stuck inside the house. I try to cuddle with my dog for a respite of relief, but even then I know that’s only temporary.

On days like this, it’s hard to see why I have to pay someone to get help. Why should I be so lucky to have a therapist that I can pay for to help me alleviate some of the pain? I don’t understand it. I can’t understand why millions of Americans who are suffering from depression just like me — cannot afford to get help and treatment from a therapist. On days like this, I try to think how lucky I am to see someone who is able, albeit temporary, to talk through my emotions with me.

On days like this, my sadness and grief are overwhelming me. I cry a little, then stop. I cry a little more, then stop. I think to myself that I’ll always be like this — an infant that cries for the rest of my life on days like this.

On days like this, I find myself super sensitive to the people and things around me — that is, if I’m able to actually leave the house. If I do, I find myself hearing the sounds around me much more clearly. I look at people a different way and see the sorrow on their faces.

On days like this, I don’t seem to understand that I should be grateful. I should be grateful for the people around me — for everything that I have that others don’t. I have a loving and supportive wife. I have an amazing daughter. I own a home in a great community. I have the best dog on the planet. I have a computer with access to all the information in the world. But yet all of that goes by the wayside on days like this.

On days like this, I can’t appreciate or feel thankful for everything that I should be appreciative and thankful for. I can only think of what’s wrong with me and therefore the wrongs I have done unto others.

On days like this, I want to be somewhere else. Perhaps the beach or the mountains. Those two places seem to give me calm when I’m there. But then reality hits. I simply cannot be there today. The main reason is logistical. My wife works outside the home and who is going to pick up our daughter from daycare? How could I leave and possibly not be home when my wife and daughter arrive to greet them?

On days like this, I think to myself that if I somehow get to the beach or mountains, how am I not to feel bad that I left in the first place? How am I not to think that leaving the house had been the right choice? How could I not think that perhaps I would have felt better somewhere else? How could I not think that I would be avoiding and dismissing my own reality? How could I not think that doing anything to help myself will work — especially when all I want to do is escape?

On days like this, I need help. I need for someone to reach out — even if I can’t reach out myself. At least that’s what I hope for. And I hope that’s not being too egotistical because that’s the opposite of how I’m feeling at the moment. I need help. We need help. And it sucks right now that help is nowhere to be found.

-AG