With spring comes many lovely things that begin with the letter “D” — daffodils and dandelions and doves and daisies. Unfortunately, for me, spring also came with something else, something less pleasant, something I wasn’t sure I should blog about at first.
I’m not sure there has to be a specific reason to find yourself in this position. A series of events, maybe. A certain date on the calendar that holds meaning for you. The passing of a friend. Loneliness. Discontent. But somehow, for whatever reason, despite the copious amount of “happy” in my life, I find myself in an unhappy place. Like someone attached a weight onto my cheerfulness.
There are light moments. Moments of clarity and laughter and fun. Moments when it feels like the anvil has been released, and my happy balloon is left to its own dancing devices. These moments are filled with family, my husband, my cats, my friends. I find whole pockets of time where I feel normal again. I feel the weight lift when I breathe in the springtime air, lift my face to the sun, feel the green grass between my toes. But when these moments should fill me up, leave me feeling content, instead they are fleeting. I reach for them, grab at them, but they filter through my fingers like so much smoke. And the weight returns, heavier than before. It always feels like Monday.
When I wake up each morning, I tell myself there’s potential for a happy day. I open my windows and listen to the birds chirping at my feeder. I dangle a string for one of my cats to play with, but it hurts to smile. I turn to my writing for solace, but I cannot find the funny girl in me, no matter how hard I try to find her. The potential of a beautiful day is overshadowed by the dark cloud that follows me.
Depression causes suffering. My writing is suffering. My husband is suffering. My weight loss journey is suffering. I am suffering.
Spring tantalizes me through my open windows. The sun beckons me to come out and play. I ache to get my hands in the dirt, to plant something that will grow. I want to start my garden. I want to take a chair and sit in the sunshine, beautiful journal in hand, and write the book that is in my head. I want to lace up my sneakers and run, feet pounding the pavement, the scent of honey suckle filling my nostrils as I jog toward the woods.
But all I do is sleep.
I tell myself it’s because I don’t want to taint something good, something beautiful, with the depression that plagues me. I want the chance to come out of my funk, so that the ugliness of my gloom doesn’t color the petals of the flowers, or darken the edges of the story I want to tell. I tell myself that I’ll do it later, tomorrow, another day. A day when I feel better.
It’s not something totally foreign to me. I’ve been down this road before. I know it is a passing thing. One day I will wake up and the sun will shine for me again. The laughter in my heart will return. It may take a few days. Maybe a couple of weeks. But I will come through this storm. I may not be unscathed, but the scars give me character. Strength. And I will be better for it, in the end.