Depression is a cloud that hangs over a saddening number of us. In the past few weeks, I've seen it take it's toll on both my friends and friends of friends, whether directly or indirectly. Even thinking about what they are going through slows me down and makes my blood run a bit cold. It hurts.
What hurts most is that I know there isn't much I or anyone else can do. At least that was the case when I was depressed. I was blessed with a wonderful family and friends and mentors and I still barely made it. There were days I didn't want to. So in a sense I feel a little hopeless about it at all. I know I didn't want help and I'm still not sure how I made it out.
Today I went through and read my old journals in an attempt to figure it out just what gave me hope, and also to take a deeper look at the darkness so many around me are facing. I thought that maybe reading about someone else's depression might be a help, if not for my friends, then for some random strangers.
What I found in my rereading was surprising. I'd remembered my journals wrong. I had thought they were filled with emotions and dark thoughts and pain. And those were all there, but I barely talked about them at all. Honestly, at first I was a little disappointed. In my mind, it was relating to the emotions that would really help folks. I wanted to help give language to people's experiences through my own. I wanted people to feel seen and heard, as so many author's have done for me.
Instead, though, I found a list of questions. Most of my journals wrestled with faith and social life and psychology. They read like someone making a court case against life. Why was it the way it was? Could I change it? Why didn't I feel like it was changing? Was I made wrong? How'd I get this way?
At this point, I have more questions. Was I depressed or just directionless? Are those any different? Would this even help anyone?
For now I'm going to sit and do more thinking. But I still wonder if maybe I didn't write those journals for a reason, past just being dramatic and feeling better.