As a self-proclaimed work-a-holic, having been signed off work for my chronic depression to get used to my increase in medication, it has left a huge void in my life. In just 3 weeks I have morphed from a Superhuman Multi-tasker with a successful career in mental health and a thriving social life to a filthy slug with some bizarre paranoia and an addiction to avocados. I’ve been assured that what I’m experiencing is normal whilst my mind tries to repair itself, and subsequently my body will follow, so I’m allowing myself to laugh at the weird things depression is forcing me to do, and of course share it with you, in the hope that if you find yourself in a similar position, you’ll know this is apparently normal.
- Buy really weird things on Groupon.
I feel as though those going through a period of mental illness should have their online shopping accounts at least partially suspended until you are well, because being able to one-click your way through new material goods to ease your depression whilst high on Prozac will never go well, no matter how much Groupon tell you that THIS DEAL IS AMERZING. So far, I have a new BlueTooth Fitness Tracker, which is hilarious as I haven’t walked further than to the bathroom in 2 and a half weeks, I have a new curling wand for my hair (which was an obvious must-have, considering I have a really short bob rn), an exercise bike which has definitely not been used but was a bastard to put together (and subsequently made me feel like a DIY Failure) and £42 left to pay my rent this month. Today, I embargoed by account when I almost bought a set of outdoor furniture (despite only having a tiny balcony for outdoor space) and an Indian cookery class. I just can’t help myself, my mind is saying no, but the depression is yelling “HEY, BUT HOW MUCH BETTER WOULD YOU FEEL IF YOU WERE SITTING ON YOUR OUTDOOR FURNITURE IN YOUR LIVING ROOM EATING INDIAN FOOD YOU’D COOKED WITH CURLY HAIR.” Fuck you.
- Wake my boyfriend up in the middle of the night TERRIFIED that I’d forgotten where China was.
I had. I don’t even know if I ever knew, or this was a new unknowledge I had acquired thanks to Prozac, but I just didn’t know where it was in the world. He got up a World map on his phone and proceeded to show me. MIND BLOWN. Since when was it that big? AND WHERE THE FUCK IS JAPAN THO? Was Japan always that small? WOAH WAIT. CHINA BORDERS FUCKING RUSSIA. I actually asked the question, “How well do the Chinese and the Russians get along?” and “Why do we never hear about any nice things that happen between them? I’ve never seen a Russian person and a Chinese person be neighbourly or unneighbourly, so like, what happens? Do they like each other?” These questions went on for hours. THEN I SAW ALASKA. WTF. Did you know they want to build a BRIDGE to attach Alaska to… oh shit I’ve forgotten. Maybe Russia. Probably Russia. BUT MY GOD. I couldn’t sleep that night knowing that my world has either grown or shrunk and I couldn’t work out which was worse.
- Watch too many True Crime shows and apply to be an Investigator.
Yep. If anyone watches TruTV or CBS Reality then you will KNOW about the absolute gold mine of TV shows on there that can satisfy your need to solve mysteries and watch murder reconstructions. OAPs Who Kill, Deadly Women, 48 Hours, Killer Twins, Psychic Detectives… they are channels made for my mind right now that needs to know things and work things out. I decided I was skilled enough to be an investigator sometime after 1am when I realised something. If someone has arsenic in the house, they must be planning a murder. I googled ‘other uses of arsenic’ and, after a few hours of searching, found there really weren’t any other uses. HENCE AND THEREFORE if a woman is found with arsenic in her house and her husband mysteriously dies then she definitely wasn’t using it for her FUCKING SKIN CARE REGIME. I’m a genius, says 2am I, I could do this for a living. So I sent my CV off to a place that needed investigators. Yeah, I needed a few years experience in like policing and shit BUT I’ve just solved 100% of arsenic related murders and I think that’s a skill they can’t do without.
- Watch every 9/11 Conspiracy Video I can find.
For about 2 days, I became really passionate about 9/11 and working out what really happened. I’m not going to write down my thoughts because I’ve read that people have been killed for sharing their views on 9/11 (yeah, I really believe this). So I’m not going to indulge you, BUT, if you want to have a few sleepless nights, increase your psychiatric medications and watch Zeitgeist and then realise that you’ve just ruined your chances for recovery this week due to paranoia about people killing you for your views on 9/11. Absolute banter.
- Continue my Conspiracy theory obsession by reading about the fact NASA has already set up a colony on Mars and LYING TO US.
(Yeah, you think this is bad? Wait until number 6). Basically, liking ‘Anonymous’ on Facebook as soon as I increased my psychiatric medications was probably a poor choice, but despite forgetting where China is whilst I’m writing this and having to google it again, I felt like I was keeping my brain sharp. NOPE. It just led to the absolute shit show that is No.6.
- GO TO THE TOILET, HAVE A SIM CARD FALL OUT OF MY PYJAMA BOTTOMS AND BELIEVE SOMEONE IS TRACKING ME AND MY MOVEMENTS AND IT MAY BE NASA.
This seriously happened, and I still can’t quite explain where the SIM Card came from, but I’m going to say now I’m 98% sure it’s not NASA’s doing. Before you ask, ‘U OK HUN?’ let me explain. I went to the toilet after finally dragging myself out of bed at around 11am, pulled my Pjyama bottoms down that I’ve worn for the past 6 days and out fell a 3 Mobile Sim Card onto the floor by my feet. “Someone must have put that in my vagina!” I actually exclaimed out loud and hence I started wondering who would do such a thing. Since it was in the midst of my NASA Conspiracy obsession, part of me questioned whether it was NASA. When I told my boyfriend when he came home, he told me he’d found it the other day and was going to ask me about it, perhaps it got stuck to my foot as I walked to the bathroom? NOPE. IT FELL FROM VAGINA HEIGHT, I said, and it may be NASA, so he told me I probably shouldn’t read conspiracy theories anymore. Looking back, that was a sensible ban.
- Make my body have a period for 12 days straight (and still have it perioding)
My depression has apparently picked up the phone to MOTHER FUCKING NATURE, the twatmonkey, and said ‘Oh hey, you know what would be HILARIOUS? Let’s give her a period now too. For ages, like, a no end in sight kinda thing. That’ll teach her for believing the NASA Conspiracy theory and not showering for a week.’ And Mother FUCKING Nature said ‘Alright babe. LOLCAT’ And that was it. It’s like seriously MOTHER NATURE, CURE CANCER OR SOMETHING STOP KICKING ME IN THE OVARIES WHEN I’M DOWN.
- Become obsessed with Kylie Jenner and hate myself for it.
That Coachella hair tho. Seriously. Hair goals. I want her lip kit, even though she literally has no right bringing out a lip kit when she’s only had lips for one year. And I hate myself again.
- Read over 200 reviews about Gwynth Paltrow’s new cook book with no intention of buying it.
I just really needed to know about what people really thought of it. Apparently. Definitely mixed reviews, is my definitive outcome from my investigative work. Most comments say you need a Spiralizer. Some people say it is definitely better than her older one as recipes only take around 30 mins to prepare but the cost of ingredients is still quite high… WHAT AM I DOING, GO OUTSIDE TO NATURE.
- Actually have a really nice time with my friends.
Surprise! It’s not all doom and bloody gloom. I hosted my own engagement party on Saturday – we’d had it booked for weeks before I fell ill, paid for all the food and people had planned their whole weekend around it, so despite my inability to be a real human, I still pulled myself out of bed and decided I would push myself no matter what. And it was really nice. I was surrounded by such incredible people who knew what I was going through, we had some drinks, laughs, we danced, I sang Proud Mary on karaoke so loud I lost my voice the next day and got really lovey with everyone. And yes, I had some wobbles, and did end up falling to sleep on the floor spooning my wardrobe because I was too anxious to ask people to leave my bedroom so I could sleep BUT it made me realise that although my depression can make me bleed, can make me paranoid to the extent that people are planting things in my vagina and make me believe things are hopeless, it can also learn when it’s time to leave you be, just for a little bit while your friends try and heal you.
I think the one thing that has been really tough is the guilt, that’s constant and relentless. I am constantly thinking, ‘What could I have actually achieved in these three weeks?’ and I become so upset at the lack of achievements I’ve made (apart from the fact I could now win a pub quiz solely based on Kylie Jenner’s life) that I find it hard to get out of bed again. And that’s always going to be a struggle. We’re constantly bombarded with messages that we only have one life and we’ve got to make every day count BLAH BLAH BLAH – we know. We really know. I’m really aware of this. Too aware of it, that it’s actually making me anxious about sitting still and looking after myself. I need to constantly be on my phone reading things to the point of obsession, I need to be working, I need to be applying for things that will make my life worthwhile and buying things that will make me happy and I need to be exercising, meditating, learning a language, see all my friends, visit my family, hold down a 9-5, chase my dreams, buy a house, have some babies, write a book, keep things clean, eat good food and FOR FUCKS SAKE PLEASE STOP IT’S ALL TOO MUCH. I just need to breathe. And so do you. And that’s what this past three weeks have shown me. So what I didn’t get out of bed today? I actually really needed to sleep whilst my body adjusts to life again. Sometimes a fucking bubble bath and a cup of chamomile tea isn’t enough – sometimes you just need to dance until you can’t move and laugh until you can’t breathe just to remind yourself you’re still human deep down and this depression can suck a dick. Maybe I don’t want to meditate today? Maybe I want to walk to Starbucks and eat a cake and listen to Fall Out Boy and remind myself that life is tasty and can be as good as I was when I was 16 and Sugar, We’re Going Down.
It’s Depression Awareness Week this week, which my mind has so perfectly synced up to. I really encourage you to talk about it, take the pressure off yourself and know that it’s okay to not be okay. It’s okay to lay in bed for days sometimes and just BE. It’s okay to laugh at it, because it’s healing. And it’s okay to take all the advice you are given, and it’s perfectly okay to put two fingers up to the advice you’re given if you know that it will be better for you. Whatever works, just don’t feel guilty. You got this, there’s so many people rooting for you and if I can make it to the end of this, so can you.