Adventures in the Dark Place – the trip is not for everyone
People who have not taken extended trips to the dark place will have trouble understanding just what it is like. They will think that you can control depression and simply stop being sad, grouchy, or negative, whatever the case may be. Trust me there are so many times that the dark place is visited and you never have any idea that I am there.
Sometimes it can be somewhat predicted by a major life changing event, but other times it comes out of nowhere. Maybe a song plays, a smell can be a trigger, thoughts are always a danger, or a sad negative person “shares” their energy with you. Whatever your triggers are, you will get to know yourself well enough to feel these episodes coming on but you rarely can stop them from coming.
We learn how we best deal with them and push on with life. After all there are responsibilities to tend to; family, children, pets, work, and others who need you. If you are ‘lucky’ enough to be functional during depression episodes, then you just push on anyway. I know some who suffer from major depression and they cannot function at all, others who push on until they reach a breaking point and then melt down before moving on.
My deal is neither of those situations; I keep moving forward and keep my head just above the quicksand. At times, I might get a little short tempered, or quiet and numb, but all the time tired and burned out while trying to maintain a front. Many of us will say “I’m fine” when most of the time we are anything but fine.
So next time you are with someone who is suffering; try being there for them even if you don’t really understand. Silent support is welcome as much as verbal. Let them know you support them, that you don’t fully understand their feelings but you are there for them. Sometimes it is better to talk things out and other times it is best to go for a walk in the woods with a good friend and just talk and spend time together.