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19 January 2012

the excuses of depression

This is what I tell myself, when I consider my difficulties with depression. ~

My depression sneaks up on me sometimes - that's the most accurate way to describe it. Some people see the world as though through rose-colored lenses; my lenses twist everything darkly, make everything a reflection of my worst traits. Sometimes I can see it happening, and convince myself that the twisted perspective is not the whole truth, or even any part of the truth. Sometimes, I can't. Or sometimes I don't see it soon enough, and the damage is already done - the spiral is already spinning downward.

The seeds of depressive thought patterns are woven with kernels of truth - the dark reflection is the twist that takes away the real meaning of events and replaces that with a more damaging, more painful meaning. In that world, a busy or tired lover becomes an uninterested lover, tolerating me only out of pity.

Logic may tell me otherwise; I know that if I were actually unwanted by my lover, I would be shown the door. But the twist - that emotional force - which is depression personified, makes that knowledge feel tenuous and flimsy, maybe even false. Sometimes, I can't refocus to see the lens; I see only the darker version of reality. Describing that force when I'm in its grip, feels impossible, and my efforts feel worse than ineffectual.

Nonetheless, the attempt to describe a wave of depression steals power from it.

My lover's touch diminishes its grip.

Displays of love. My depression loses, pitted against displays of love.
...I must be a ridiculously, biologically sappy romantic.

The above is true - but only in the recognition of the feelings of depression. Comparatively, it's unimportant. None of this holds water as an excuse for not speaking frankly about what I'm feeling, when I'm feeling overwhelmed by my depression. In fact, it clearly means that I must speak candidly, and often, about my behaviors - that will show me my real feelings, I believe. 

Time for reality.

Depression is a bitch of an illness. That reality is that I am smarter than depression.

I often don't act like I am. I excuse myself from behaving intelligently, and I blame depression. It's a crutch for poor ethics. On one hand, no amount of intelligence or will or internal fortitude will actually chase depression away completely. That twisted emotional force will be there, regardless, unless I figure out how to permanently change my neurochemistry. On the other hand, how I deal with it is completely my choice. Failure to be forthright is a failure to take control of my behavior, by allowing childish fears to circumvent or overpower adult knowledgeability and responsibility.

From a slightly detached, psychology-student perspective, it seems likely that forcing my brain to switch regions from whichever is producing/reacting to those fears (fears which create the shape of depression) to a region which is more logic-oriented - that which might be stimulated by speech and analysis - would necessarily reduce symptoms of depression. Forcing speech, and the requisite analysis for coherent speech, might force a reallocation of resources from the reactive region to the logical region. Maybe?

I do know that speaking about events (or anything, really) reinforces the transfer of that data from short-term memory to long-term memory. That's important.

I need to find my memories.

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