"Depression is humiliating. It turns intelligent, kind people into zombies who can’t wash a dish or change their socks. It affects the ability to think clearly, to feel anything, to ascribe value to your children, your lifelong passions, your relative good fortune. It scoops out your normal healthy ability to cope with bad days and bad news, and replaces it with an unrecognizable sludge that finds no pleasure, no delight, no point in anything outside of bed. You alienate your friends because you can’t comport yourself socially, you risk your job because you can’t concentrate, you live in moderate squalor because you have no energy to stand up, let alone take out the garbage. You become pathetic and you know it. And you have no capacity to stop the downward plunge. You have no perspective, no emotional reserves, no faith that it will get better. So you feel guilty and ashamed of your inability to deal with life like a regular human, which exacerbates the depression and the isolation.
Depression is humiliating.
If you’ve never been depressed, thank your lucky stars and back off the folks who take a pill so they can make eye contact with the grocery store cashier. No one on earth would choose the nightmare of depression over an averagely turbulent normal life.
It’s not an incapacity to cope with day to day living in the modern world. It’s an incapacity to function. At all. If you and your loved ones have been spared, every blessing to you. If depression has taken root in you or your loved ones, every blessing to you, too.
Depression is humiliating.
No one chooses it. No one deserves it. It runs in families, it ruins families. You cannot imagine what it takes to feign normalcy, to show up to work, to make a dentist appointment, to pay bills, to walk your dog, to return library books on time, to keep enough toilet paper on hand, when you are exerting most of your capacity on trying not to kill yourself. Depression is real. Just because you’ve never had it doesn’t make it imaginary. Compassion is also real. And a depressed person may cling desperately to it until they are out of the woods and they may remember your compassion for the rest of their lives as a force greater than their depression. Have a heart. Judge not lest ye be judged."
Today I called a depression hotline
Because I was awake before the sun and
Nobody else was.
A woman on the other end answered.
Just before I opened my mouth
I thought about if anyone ever thought to
Ask them if they were alright.
So I did.
Over the phone I could almost hear her smile as she said
“I’m doing just fine.”
I’ve been conditioned to hold my breath
When I walk by cemeteries or
When ambulances pass by.
Sometimes it is not always beauty that robs your lungs.
In the 5th grade I accidentally broke a boy’s finger.
I feel guilty about it still.
I’ve been single for almost a decade.
When I was telling my friend about
Another botched attempt at getting close with a girl she said
“You’re too soft for a man. You’re too nice.
Girls want to hug boys like you, not kiss them.”
I can’t help that my arms tremble when I hold someone,
I don’t want to break something so precious.
I can’t help that I cry more out of love than I do sadness.
I am not a shell, I am not steel.
My skin is dark but it is not rough.
My body writes checks out to any homeless heart.
My lips bruise trying to talk people into sleep.
I am soft, I am tender.
"She tastes like nectar and salt. Nectar and salt and apples. Pollen and stars and hinges. She tastes like fairy tales. Swan maiden at midnight. Cream on the tip of a fox’s tongue. She tastes like hope."
— Laini Taylor, Daughter of Smoke and Bone (via sleepysylph)
"I don’t think love is always a huge, cataclysmal emotional event. I think sometimes it sits in front of you for a very long time until you glance over and say, oh, there you are. I don’t think it’s your saving grace. I think it’s the hand that you hold while you save yourself. I don’t think it’s someone who sweeps you off your feet. I think it’s someone who stays right beside you and lets you walk on your own. I don’t think it’s always a blazing but temporary insanity of racing hearts and hormones. I think that’s the love that changes us. The love that should stay with us is the calm, deep, thorough knowing that you want to be with someone despite logical objections. And what may be even more important than anything is that I think you find your own love at the very edges of where other people’s love pushes you."
"You are not afraid.
You are a cathedral waiting to be filled with hymns;
you are an infinite playground;
you are sky-bound and sprinting,
so cover your heart in goose-bump armor.
It will only beat stronger,
— From “Perfectly Human” by Miles Walser. (via mirroir)