Over the last few days I have been a little more tired, grumpy, uninterested and irritable than usual. It wasn't until I was reading in bed last night that I realised it was the return of the uninvited guest. He sneaks up edging in, a little at a time, until once again I find myself in a place of hopelessness and self doubt.
There is no quick fix to PND, no amount of medication, therapy or groups will make it go away. It takes a willingness to work on it yourself and know that there will be good days and bad. Just when I thought everything was running along nicely the unwanted guest slips back in to my life. I certainly didn't ask him back, as the one thing I have consciously made a decision on is that, I will never get to that place again where my life is not worth the effort everyone else is having to make to keep me alive. The one thing I am positive about is I will live, and I will live even if it annoys everyone else. But that doesn't mean that it is any easier. It doesn't mean that the feelings of worthlessness, distress, or hopelessness go away. It just means that I'm willing to make an effort to manage them.
The best way to describe how I feel right now is like I have jumped off a cliff into the ocean without taking a proper look at what the water was like. I am struggling and fighting for air as I have been caught in a rip and I'm so, so tired of fighting against the oceans downward pull. As I get tired I stop for a moment and wonder if I could just give up and drown as I don't feel like I have any fight left. Then someone reaches out and offers some support and I catch my breath and start to restock. But as the hands start to let go I realise I am still in the cold, dark, wild ocean and I still have to fight. At this moment hope of being pulled to shore seems so far away that I can't imagine it even happening.
Depression is a struggle with the feelings you have inside even when you know that there is no valid justification to the feelings. I know I am a good mum, friend and wife. But depression some how fogs this over having me check and recheck myself as the feelings of self doubt flood my thinking. It is just so tiring to fight it sometimes, to keep putting my thinking back to the positive when the negative route is so well carved. I am struggling to find the reasons that I deserve to be happy and that I am worth some self care. Depression is the biggest liar you will ever meet. It tells you that you aren't worth the time, effort or money. That you aren't doing a good enough job to be appreciated and when someone over looks the things you do manage to struggle to do it reinforces the feelings of guilt and lack of worth.
So today I find myself arguing with the uninvited guest, telling him I never asked him to come visit. Asking that if he isn't leaving, to please find it in his heart to be kind to me this time. And asking God for the strength to face this again. I know I need to find a way to live with this unwelcome visitor as I will not let him own my life again but it is hard and it scares me. But I will live, even if it annoys everyone, that I am sure of. And even if that is all at this point in time, that is enough for today.