Climbing Out of the Quicksand

sad phone

sad phone (Photo credit: Ron Bennetts)

Hello gentle readers, it has been far too long. I apologize for my absence. The past two weeks I have allowed myself to be pulled into a deep funk. Work has been good, but not as good as it could be, and I responded by doing what I do best: beat myself bloody over it. I nearly let myself get dragged down by the quicksand of despair. I cannot promise it won’t happen again, but I will do my level best to avoid it. That is usually easier said than done.

It is easier, however, when you’ve got great support, and I have that in spades. I have a wonderful brother and sister, a great dad, a sister by another mister (that’s the incomparable Rachel Whaley-Doll, whose book you should buy right before you buy your copies of mine,) my Buffalo Bestie (and boss) Patty, and my main girl RJ. There are so many others I could add, but frankly you would get bored with the very long list. I know how fortunate I am compared to so many others that have to deal with these bouts of depression.

The world has thrown me some vicious curves over the years. Just being a trans* woman is hard enough (though I realize trans* women of color have it so much harder that it beggars description.) I have had many awesome influences in my life, but I have also had those that have shaped my self image for the worst. I have squandered opportunities but I have also had victories that I had worked long and hard for snatched away at the last moment. I have climbed out of one hole just to stumble into another. Still, through it all I have had those above mentioned friends and family. I honestly don’t think I could have made it through without them.

Which gets me to what I really want to talk about. As I said, I am fortunate. There are so many out there that at least feel like they have no support. For too many that feeling is a reality most do not want to acknowledge. Legion are the ranks of us who gave to go it alone when dealing with mental illness, especially depression. Too often, when a peer, friend, or family member is dealing with depression, our knee-jerk reaction is to tell them to pull out of it. This advice is bandied about with a certain self-righteousness and bravado. The implication that the sufferer can just easily dismiss their feelings makes it so much harder to: “what is wrong with me that I cannot just shake it off?”

That’s why today I am asking you to think about those you know who may be suffering from depression. Rather than ignore the problem and hope they just get better, or tell them to simply buck up, please, remind them they have value. Remind them, as Patty recently did me, that they have to be their own biggest fans. Remind them that they have good reason to be so (and if necessary, list some of those reasons.) Depression is no joke. I nearly took that horrible, ultimate action myself, and I have support. How many out there have no one brave enough to keep them from ending it all and leave those that love them to deal with the aftermath?

I would also like to thank you, my readers. Just knowing there is anyone out there who finds my words worth reading gives me something to hold on to. It gives me a light in the long dark that I can move toward. It is one more reason for me to be grateful. I promise to make sure to keep whatever it is you like about Hand of Ananke coming, and to those of you struggling, remember, you are amazing. You have fought long and hard and that alone is an accomplishment. Do not be afraid to reach out for help, do not be afraid to appear vulnerable, and most of all never be afraid that it won’t get better, because it can and does.

Pax et Amor;


6 thoughts on “Climbing Out of the Quicksand

    • Thank you dear. Too many ignore how much white privilege magnifies other forms of oppression. Men get paid more than woman, but WoC get paid even worse than white women. Trans* women are targets of senseless violence on an order of magnitude greater than the general populace that boggles the mind, yet trans* women of color are targets at such a degree that just BEING a trans* woman of color is a serious health risk.

  1. I know you struggle and I even though I’m not in touch with you as much as I should be I do treasure you. In fact, just this week I was mentioning to Ed just how brave you are and strong. I love your writing but that’s not why I continue to be a fan. I’m a fan of you, my friend.

  2. Pingback: What To Do | survivingmiddleage

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