Permission to Feel: DEPRESSION
This week I talked about depression on my Instagram story, saying something along these lines:
I have borderline personality disorder, so i experience manic and depressive episodes. I’ve felt this depression coming on for some time, but the recent and unexpected death of a former mentor really tipped me over the edge
I’ve withdrawn a lot this week, and let some people down, but continued posting on Instagram as if nothing was different. It was just now when I was admitting why I'd disappeared to a good friend that I realized that I still feel shame about my depression.
I've owned a lot of other feelings here, but depression was something I wanted to hide. I told lots of people that I was sick because I didn’t think they’d take me seriously if I said I hadn’t done any work because I couldn’t stop crying.
I don’t have a tidy moral to share with you yet, because I'm still in it. Usually we learn things when we look back, and I'm just not there yet. I know this wont last forever, but it’s here now, and that deserves some recognition.
I usually have lots of morals to tell you about certain experiences or feelings because they have already happened and I've had the chance to look back on them and process. I'd like to make a practice of owning the feeling while I'm still in it. That can be the lesson here, in and of itself. To live life, to give ourselves permission to feel whatever it is we are feeling, without the pressure to wrap it up nice and tidy for the world.
I couldn't paint for the past week, and I finally did some of that last night. I started this piece while thinking about how depression felt to me, as a metaphor.
I believe that it is like looking at a sky around sunset, seeing both the extreme hues of the sun while there is a turbulent thunder cloud rumbling in the distance. You can see it coming, feel the air change - from clammy to a slight chill.
You know that there will be peace after, but that storm is taking over the sunset and will ride out the night. When dawn comes, it might still be rainy. This dreary weather might last for the entire next day - next week even. But thunder feels like some release of a great pressure that has been building.
So here's permission to FEEL this. It's so real, and ignoring it makes it last longer, to be honest. There is no part of you that deserves to be buried, no matter how ugly it feels.