Flowers and analogies


I've been thinking about depression, but not in a 'Woe is me!' way at all. I'm absolutely fine and don't want anyone to worry about me. I really believe that every situation good or bad holds a lesson and I've just been schooled for the better. :)

I feel reasonably happy, or rather there's no particular reason for me to feel terribly sad right now. We're in limbo re: my step dad's cancer, but no news is good news. I have my dad's side of the family staying with me at the moment, and although it puts a strain on me mentally and physically it's good to see them.

I've just thought of a better analogy to describe my depression. 15 minutes ago I best described my depression as carrying around a sopping wet heavy blanket which makes every task harder, but I just thought of an even truer analogy than that.

Depression affects different people in different ways. I've been suicidal in the very distant past, and I've had the kind of depression where everything seems hopeless and every day is a snotfest from endless crying. The depression I've had for the last 7 or 8 years is different, and the blanket analogy helped. But now I see it's not just a heavy blanket that wears me down and makes everything so much harder to do. The blanket analogy only works for dealing with things, not people. When it comes to people, it's like being covered in a layer of something which dulls the senses and makes me unable to feel the same bond or closeness, almost like I've been dipped in wax. Have you ever got hot wax on your fingertips and felt your sense of touch dull as the wax shapes to your form and dries? That.

It's not just that I feel a fatigue which takes the joy out of things I normally enjoy, but it takes the joy out of my relationships with people too. I need to have people there for me but desperately don't want to ask, nor do I want any special treatment as I feel like the world's biggest dramatist for feeling this way already. I empathise with other people's struggles but don't want to inadvertently insert my own shit into the mix so I'm keeping my distance from people and thus heightening my feeling of being separate even more. Catch 22.

On Friday morning a lovely bunch of flowers arrived from some of my fellow bloggers. I had a 'They're not for me!' moment with the Interflora lady before taking them in and bursting into tears when I read the card. ;)

That sense of isolation I was feeling was almost entirely on my part, but when you're in the grip of the beast it needs some kind of miracle to see it. Receiving the flowers made me cry, and also made me see I'm a daft arse, but knowing I am and shirking off that which ails me are two very different things.

I can't tell you the amount of photos I've taken for blog posts which will likely never see the light of day. Let me see, there's me with henna on my scraped back hair and little makeup wearing a casual around-the-house outfit and slippers as that was all I had time for that day. There's the beetroot faced and rained on photo set I took when I stupidly decided to walk home on an empty stomach from the dentists sans umbrella in a downpour.

These photos capture the reality of the best of some of my days recently, yet even with my penchant for realism, I can't get two sentences into such a post without boring myself to tears. I have no interest in food other than what's quick and thoughtless and veganism has temporarily gone out of the window. I'm not even internet shopping as the thought of everything tires me, and as such I would feel like a 3 headed freak if I were to admit that to a group of fellow bloggers.

Because I have no interest in buying new or putting together old outfits I feel like I've lost part of myself. And maybe that's the biggest and best analogy to describe depression. You've lost part of yourself and you know it's still in there but you just can't get to it or get it back.

This will pass. Bad things always do. I'm glad I've realised a bit more about the ways depression isolates me from other people. I'm writing this for other people who might be suffering with the black dog, and also for myself, so I can come back and read this at a later date when I may not be so rational.

Again, I'm fine and this isn't a cry for help or attention seeking. I don't know when I'll be back blogging properly, but it'll be when I feel I have something worth sharing. Meanwhile I'll be keeping my head down and trying to peel this wax off/shirk off that blanket. ;)

Take it easy,
Leah xoxo

P.S. Thanks so much to everyone who took part in Outfit August. I intended to be so much more hands on and to share lots more of your posts on instagram but it didn't pan out because mental health, yo. I found some great new people to follow and I'm glad of that.

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