Friday, January 14, 2011

And the Walls came Tumbling Down

For the last four days I’ve been holed up in my apartment. I’ve let the phone ring and go to voice mail. I haven’t returned calls. I didn’t even check for mail. I’ve written about this before — my current battle with depression. I thought I was coping well, and that I had done the right things: recognized the signs, sought professional help, ensured I was keeping physically active, established a support system among my circle of friends. Despite my best efforts, despite trying to stave off depression, but still my walls came tumbling down.

Well before the Christmas holidays I felt myself slipping away. While I was getting up early to write before heading to work, not much was happening. I knew that it was more than writer’s block. I couldn’t hold my focus. I couldn’t gather my thoughts. I was agitated, nervous. There were moments when I panicked for no apparent reason, often on the verge of tears. I felt completely overwhelmed, the weight of the world on my shoulders, like I was spinning, spinning, spinning. I spun right out of control.


My head throbbed with pain. I had barely slept the night before. I was exhausted, and I couldn’t do anything without feeling like I had run a marathon (without training!).


I felt like I had an eighteen wheeler parked on my chest. I roamed about in a complete daze, the migraine from the day before still lingering on the heels of a second restless night. I tried editing a piece of writing, but it was like I was circling, trying to come in for a landing but always overshooting the runway.


When my alarm went off at six o’clock, I dragged myself out of bed to feed the cats, meowing outside my door for close to an hour. Like on that first cold day of winter, my engine wouldn’t flip. And when it finally started, I couldn’t get it out of first gear. I didn’t have any energy. In a matter of speaking, I had flat lined. I crawled back into bed and stayed there, fading in and out of consciousness until I was able to talk myself out of bed at 3:30 p.m.


I left my apartment for the first time in four days as I had an appointment with my doctor. I had involuntarily disconnected myself from the world. When my doctor asked me how I was doing, I had to check my tears. The new medication I had switched to just before Christmas was working slightly better than the previous one, but my head, as was my heart, was still heavy. I didn’t know how I was going to make it through this difficult period. I was at a loss. How had I arrived at this point? What could I do to get past all of this? How long would it take? My doctor listened patiently to my litany of complaints. Together, we decided on a course of action.


I woke up this morning tired, and still feeling a bit lost, but hopeful. Chuck T. Falcon asks us to “Remember sadness is always temporary. This, too, shall pass.” I am determined that depression will not have dominion here.


  1. Hi, M. We are thinking of you and wishing you well. Love, H-A and M

  2. Hang in there! Powerful, poignant post. Good times are coming. Believe. Court them. Good luck.