Thursday 16 May 2013

Cheer Up, Chuck

We've hit the halfway point, and I'm still plodding along and Blogging Every Day In May.

Day 16, Thursday: Something difficult about your "lot in life" and how you're working to overcome it

I've been thinking about this one all day, and although I'm finding it quite difficult to get this blog post sorted in my head, I didn't want to miss a day of this challenge.  

I don't like to complain.  I've spent a large portion of my life complaining about all the things 'wrong' with my life, but as I've gotten older I've taken more note of the things going on in the world.  It's not a pretty sight.  I used to get upset with a bad hair day, but then I'm sure there are people dealing with hair loss through chemotherapy who would be glad of a bad hair day.  I used to get upset when the supermarket running out of my favourite cereal., but then I'm sure there are people struggling through a famine who would be appreciative of their second favourite cereal!

However, although I no longer get fed up when I'm faced with insignificant problems, I am one of the 1 in 4 who suffer with depression.  My depression started at an early age, when I was at school.  I suffered at the hands of a number of bullies (both children and teachers), but wouldn't admit that there was a problem.  I'd push myself through each day at school with a smile on my face, and then cry myself to sleep when I was at home.  The bullying continued through university, and then into the work place.  My parents wanted me to get help, but there's still a negative stigma attached to mental illness.  If people find out you suffer with depression, they just tell you to cheer up.  Having depression and being depressed are two different things.

I then got to a point in my life where crying every day was as normal as going to the toilet.  Sometimes I'd cry for a few minutes, and other times I'd cry for hours.  Sometimes something would happen to trigger it off, but most of the time it came out of nowhere.  One day when I found myself crying at the gym, my mum took me to see the doctor who prescribed me antidepressants.  I'd never wanted to take tablets.  I don't even take tablets when I have a headache.  I always thought I could fight through anything.  But the depression was making it difficult for me to do anything.  It was stopping me living my life.

I was a bit nervous about seeing the doctor because I thought she'd laugh at me or think I was just being silly.  But she was very kind and made me realise that I wasn't alone.  So I took my first tablet that day, and it made a world of difference.  I stopped crying for one.  It was such a strange feeling to be able to get through a whole day without welling up.  Secondly I started doing things.  Before the tablets I would mope around, cry, do nothing, cry, stay in bed, cry, sleep, cry (you get the picture), but after the tablets I found that I had interests and hobbies, and filled my time with things that I enjoyed and in turn made me feel better.

Depression, I think, can be overcome with two things; firstly medication.  I'm still not happy that I have to take the tablets, but they fix the chemical imbalance in my old brain box so they can't be that bad.  And secondly, a change in outlook.  BT (before tablets) I was extremely negative.  Everything was rubbish.  Nothing ever goes right for me.  I wish I'd never been born.  Then AT (after tablets) I realised that I could accomplish things.  I realised that even though the world can be a crappy place sometimes, I can make the most of what I've got.  I have to remind myself that I have a home, food, clothes, a loving family, and I now have a job.  There are hundreds, if not thousands of people who would love to have those things.

So my 'lot in life' is that I suffer with depression, but I'm not going to let that rule my life and take away my happiness.  I've got it under control with the tablets, and my head is a lot clearer which allows me to recognise the good things in my life rather than dwelling on the bad.  My life isn't perfect, but who has a perfect life?  I've just learnt how to deal with the imperfections.


  1. Found your blog through the Blog Everyday in May challenge. Sorry to hear that you have depression, well done for making the step to do something about it though! That takes a lot :) x

    1. Thank you for stopping by. It took me a while to recognise what was wrong, but thankfully I wasn't too late :)

  2. Having a good attitude, a good schedule is also helpful. Mental illness is just like any other illness, sometimes you need medication, or therapy be it physical or counseling...sometimes you need copying skills. Glad you finally got to the Doctor.

    1. Thank you. Once you admit you have a problem, it's so easy to get it sorted :)

  3. Sending love and light to you. You are so incredibly brave!