It occurred to me recently while on a bicycle ride (where easily 85% of my real thinking occurs) that maybe depression is something I just have to accept and live with.
I’m looking at it this way: I’ve been trying for the best part of fifteen years to get over, ahead of, or on top of my depression, and shit ain’t happening. A little medication, a little therapy, I think, “okay, I got this managed,” and lo, a year or so on and it all falls apart. Some personal catastrophe breaks me up, or maybe just nothing other than my shit-for-brain-chemistry rears up. One way or another, the net result is the same. Feelings of worthlessness or futility. Or just numbness. Everyday life being just. so. much. work. Being so tired. And annoyed. And sad. And just plain done.
Therapy is like booting a cut tire. It’ll get me home; it seems like I’ll hold air for a while, but inevitably, I’m going to deflate (probably when I need most desperately to be rolling). And medication is an awfully mixed blessing. It may get me over the “hump,” but it doesn’t always. And the side effects that come with it, especially the “flattening” and loss of appetites that attend are a steep price to pay. Especially when I am already in a very demotivated place, adding a chemical that makes me even more tired, that makes me not hungry, that takes my will to be joyful along with softening my will to be sad…I have a hard time reconciling that balance.
Sometimes I wonder: is a certain degree of existential dread just plain normal? Everyone struggles. Everyone hits tough spells. Everyone will live through a few traumatic events during this journey from womb to tomb. Why fight it, especially when the fight is so pointless? If it is a fight I am destined to lose, maybe it’s a better idea to stop wasting so much energy on fighting it, and learn to live with it, live around it, and accept that these bottom-scraping low periods pass, just as the good times do. I wonder, do the hard times just seem to last longer because of how “time flies when you’re having fun”? Like when I am going through a good patch, I might not realise and appreciate it as I should because we’re conditioned to notice discomfort, but take feeling all right for granted?
Maybe what I am saying is that I should start taking the struggles for granted and when the smooth patches heave into view, I should land ’em like a victorious pirate captain, plant my flag, and celebrate like I have commandeered the finest shipment of Good Times on the high seas.