Depression is like…

Depression is like…falling.

Depression is like falling into a deep, deep hole.

In this hole, you are surrounded by complete and total darkness. The floor is dirt. The walls are cement.

In this hole, you fall right in the middle and everything around you spins like a tornado. It is not quiet; it is not peaceful.

Directly to your left, there is a ladder to the top. You are not prisoner in this hole but, still, you feel like you will never escape.

Directly to your left, there is this idea that if you just take one step up, you might be able to take another. But you’re stuck. You feel broken and exhausted from the fall, and your limbs won’t move.

At the top of the hole, there are people telling you to ‘cheer up,’  to  ‘just get out and do something,’ to ‘stop feeling sorry for yourself.’

At the bottom of the hole, you feel like a failure, like there is something wrong with you, that you’re a burden, and that people look at you differently now that you’re at the bottom of this hole.

When you sleep, it is not for long, and, when you wake, you remember that you need to face another day in this deep, dark hole.

What will you do? How will you pass the time? Will you try to climb the ladder? No. Not today. Maybe tomorrow.

The next day, you try to climb the ladder. You get halfway up, but something stops you and you think, this is useless.

You fall back in.

Back on the ground, you gaze at the top. You think, even if I get up there, I won’t last long. I’ll be back here again in no time.  You resign yourself to stay in the hole forever.

Then, one day, you wake to see a person climbing down the ladder into the hole. They reach the bottom and reach out their hand. You eagerly, albeit hesitantly, grab it, excited for a lifeline, but afraid they aren’t actually real.

This person lifts you up and guides you up the ladder. Not halfway this time, but all the way to the top.

You look around.  The top of the hole is bright. There is no longer a tornado spinning around you. Your limbs feel light.

As you walk with this person, you look over your shoulder to see the opening to the hole become smaller and smaller and farther and farther away.

As the days go by, flashbacks to your time in the hole become less frequent. You breathe a little easier.

The person that helped you out of the hole sticks by your side.

You feel supported.

You feel safe.

You are not alone.

Craggy Gardens-roseyrebecca.com

* I felt inspired to write this blog post early on Sunday morning.  I was thinking about writing more about my struggles with depression on my blog, but wasn’t quite sure what to say or where to start. This is the result.

In this case, the ‘person’ who pulls me out of the hole is a metaphor for treatment (therapy), but it could mean a friend or family member too. If you struggle with depression, feel free to interpret it however you like. If you don’t suffer from depression, I hope this helps you understand how a friend or family member might be feeling if they are suffering. Remember, it’s never helpful to tell someone who is struggling to ‘just cheer up.’ Believe me, it’s never that easy.

I wrote this post to help start a conversation, to help end the stigma. Depression is a very real disease. I hope you will share this post if you are in any way inspired or moved by its message.  As always, thank you for reading.

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March Confessions (2018)

Well HELLO THERE!The Beehive Coffee Bar, Asheville, NC, www.roseyrebecca.com

As I type this, I’m sitting in the sweetest little new-to-me coffee shop, The Beehive Coffee Bar. I can’t believe I’ve never been here. It’s the coziest spot! I just inhaled a delicious vegan blueberry scone and am sipping a hot cup of coffee on this blustery March day. Life is good.

It’s been about a month since I did my last confessions post, so let’s get to it, shall we?

Confession #1

Most of the time, my bedroom floor is covered in a sea of clothing.

No matter what I do or how hard I try, it seems I can never keep my clothing from exploding all over the dang floor. Ladies, tell me, do you have this issue? I mean, there’s really no excuse for it. We’re currently using an entire other bedroom as our walk-in closet (which, if I’m honest, also has clothing all over the floor). I mean, I can’t be the only who piles their clean laundry up on the bed instead of putting it away, and, then, when it’s time for bed, transfers it to the floor, then back to the bed, then back to the floor. RIGHT? Right. VALIDATE ME.

Confession #2

I hate (most) games.

Board games, party games, card games, you name it, I hate most of em. Go ahead, let me have it. Kick me out (of my own blog). I’m no fun. I have no patience for them. No patience to learn the rules, wait for my turn, not win. Maybe that’s really what it is. Maybe I’m just a sore loser. I’m super competitive. Always have been. Always will be. I like to win. Not as much as Donald Trump likes to win (shudder) but I like to win. There is one exception to this confession, however: I LOVE Cards Against Humanity. I will play that with you all day every day.

Confession #3

I’m stuck in a food rut.

Baked Cheesy Veggie Pasta, www.roseyrebecca.com

WHAT? How could this be, Rebecca? You post different foods on your IG daily. OK, so I’m not talking an Asheville restaurants food rut, I’m talking a cooking food rut. I think I’ve made the same pasta dish every week for the past two months. And when I’m not making that pasta dish, I’m making veggie hot dogs and boxed mac & cheese (see my February Confessions). I usually rely on Pinterest for new recipe inspiration, so if you’re on there, feel free to send me ALL THE VEGETARIAN RECIPES. Seriously, please send me recipes or I’m going to be eating pasta and veggie hot dogs for the rest of my life.

Confession #4

I don’t believe in leggings as pants.  There, I said it.

leggings as pants meme, someecards.com

I know this is an SUPER unpopular opinion and let me stop right here and tell you I don’t care if YOU wear leggings pants. You do you. Wear no pants. I don’t care. Just don’t make ME wear leggings as pants. Let me stop again and clarify that when I say leggings, I don’t mean workout pants. I wear those all over the place. I mean the colorful, patterned stretchy tight things. That said, I am on the lookout for super comfortable sweatpants that I can wear out to events and kind of look like I made an effort to look nice. Do those exist? Where do I find them? HALP.

Confession #5

I simultaneously love writing this blog and hate writing this blog.

Blooms On Tap- Asheville,NC, www.roseyrebecca.com

I think that this confession ties in with my next one. Writing here has been a struggle for me lately, but I love it so, so, so much when I do. I’ve talked to so many of you who have encouraged me to keep writing and I appreciate it so much. I recently decided that I need to change my mentality from “I NEED to blog today” to “I WANT to blog today.” When I frame it like that, I don’t feel as much anxiety and pressure around it. I tend to beat myself up when I’m not exactly where I want to be with my writing and posting. I’m working really hard to stop.

Confession #6

I struggle with depression.

Blooms On Tap- Asheville,NC, www.roseyrebecca.com

I left this one for last because it’s a doozy. (Does anyone say doozy anymore?) So I know I’ve talked about my anxiety here before but I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned that I struggle with depression too, and the truth is, most of the time, they go hand in hand. Even so, I hesitated to confess this because for some reason, in my mind, admitting that I suffer from anxiety is not as embarrassing/shameful as admitting that I also suffer from depression. Trust me, I know there is nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed about, but I also know that depression lies, and my depression tells me that admitting that I have it will make people pity me and look at me differently. Especially those closest to me. But it’s just not true.

I know that some people will not agree with my posting about this because it’s very personal but I think that mental health is an extremely important topic that and, frankly, it doesn’t get talked about enough. If admitting that I’m depressed helps even one person feel like they’re not alone, I think it’s worth it to write about. I know from experience that anxiety and depression can be very isolating. It can make you feel like an outcast and like something is wrong with you, when, in fact, tons of people suffer from mental illness.

I typed the words “life is good” at the beginning of this post, and, that’s the thing, life IS good. There’s this common misconception that depression means lying in bed all day sobbing or being sad about any one thing. The truth is, you can be depressed and still function. You can be depressed and still have good, happy days. Depression can hit anyone, at any time, for any reason, or for no reason at all. It’s nothing to feel ashamed of or bad about, and I plan to talk about it a lot more because it’s important that you know that I’m a real person with real emotions and that it’s OK for you to be a real person with real emotions too. The end.

My struggle with depression, www.roseyrebecca.com

OK, with all that off my chest, you tell me, what are your March confessions!?

Have a beautiful day <3

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