Some times it is just too damn hard. You look out the window, you read the paper, you listen to conversations going on around you and it is so difficult to see any good in the world. One thing happens, then another, then another, and before you know it you have convinced yourself that you are jinxed and/or no good. Some times it just sounds easier to quit.
I’m not going to do that though. Once upon a time I might have. My struggles with depression have been chronicled here in the past. The memories are difficult to confront, they represent a very dark time in my life, but they have also armed me. I know, from past experience, that I can fight through this. There may not be great times ahead, but there will be better ones, if only marginally. I know I am luckier than many and luckier than most in my position. I have a family and friends that accept me, most of whom are not dismissive when it comes to depression.
So many people are though. I have encountered, and watched other depression sufferers have to cope with, people who insist we just need to get out of our funk. Some have good intentions, others, for some reason, are angry at us. Because, of course, nothing helps a depressed person like letting them know how much they are bothering you. What’s that? You are giving me one more bit of evidence that I am just a burden? Well, I guess I know how to fix that.
It’s an ugly bit of reality. We don’t like to think about people we know ending their own lives. We get angry at them, even those of us who know better. It is a selfish act, there is no getting around it, but when you are spiraling it is easy to see the insistence of others that you go on as selfish on their part. I know from my experience that one can get angry at the people you will be leaving behind because you think they are holding you here in a hellish existence. Again, this is not a pleasant thought, but there it is all the same, and it is very real.
Just writing about this makes it more bearable. I know I can make it through on my own if I just keep doing this, but even if I can’t I have a wonderful brother and sister, amazing father, incomparable friends like Aaron, Rachel, Nina, Patty and Melanie, and a great roomie who will all stand by me if it gets to be too much. So many others, though, don’t have that, and I would ask those of you out there who think you might be able to be that, do so for someone who needs it.
It’s easy to be friends in good times. It requires no effort to live, laugh, and enjoy each others company when everyone is employed, everyone is healthy, and you are all happy. It is quite another to stand by someone when they are on the road to hell. It is scary and it is hard work and it may dredge up feelings you do not want to deal with. If you really are the decent person I know you want to be, though, you’ll do it. You’ll be the one that doesn’t judge, doesn’t tell them how to cope, you’ll just be there, a shoulder to lean on and a voice to tell them they can find something beautiful inside if they give it time. Sometimes, most of the time, that is all they need.