What They Don't Tell You About Depression

Personally, going through several transitions has been tough, scary, hurtful, painful, and a trial and error process in adjusting. The few things that have helped me is talking with friends and getting their opinions, or having them around as a sounding board. The perspective they give is valuable, and has helped me see ways of moving on and accepting change. These personal transitions have definitely contributed to my anxiety, and I am slowly becoming aware of how I react to change, and understanding that this may be a contributing trigger.

This thing I live with, the D-word…I wouldn’t wish this upon anyone, despite how awful they may have been towards me or to others. It’s insidious, it’s consuming, and it’s relentless.

Most of all, it’s exhausting. My mind races, my heart feels physical pains, I am fatigued and have trouble staying asleep, I feel listless, and feel the things that I really loved have had their shine dulled. I force myself to go to yoga to distract my mind momentarily, but after, I return straight to bed. I’m slowly losing weight and I can’t be bothered to care. I have restarted medication and it takes about 6 weeks for any efficacy to appear, so I can’t really say if there has been a significant difference.

It’s exhausting outside of the effects that it has on my physical body and emotional body because the health care system here is fucking abysmal. I have communicated with two physicians since reaching out for more help; one of them has only prescribed pills, while the other one wants to consult with me prior to referring me out to a psychiatrist. I started this process on March 17th and as of writing this, it is now April 9th and I still haven’t advanced in any further care. This is three weeks of waiting to receive help on managing this depression and I cannot tell you how incredibly disheartening and frustrating it is (I was able to secure an appointment on April 10th, and from there it’s TBA on when I will get an appointment with the referred psychiatrist).

I want to be clear that I cannot just “be happy,” nor am I sad 24/7. I do have days where I definitely feel better than some, especially when I am in the classroom teaching. As I write this, I feel tears coming down my face because it is the one thing I truly care for. If that were taken away from me, I’m not sure what I would do. If you come to my classes, I hope you can see that. I hope you can hear it in my voice.

My ask to anyone reading this who knows someone going through depression is to ask them how they are. Instead of you offering if there is anything you can do for them, take the time to be there for your friend. Very kindly encourage them to go somewhere with you and leave it an open-ended invitation. Go over to them and just hold them while they cry — you don’t even have to say anything. Just be there.

By Maurice Berbano

By Maurice Berbano

I want to close this by saying that this isn’t a cry for help or a beacon for attention. It is talked about more and more, but not enough. This is what I am going through right now, and I know I’m not the only one.