1. It's not because of other people.

Depression is a knot in MY heart that, although may have been made heavier by the strain of bad relationships, has resided there for quite awhile. What I need from people I love is for them to understand that they are not the reason why I am depressed. What they do and do not do does not make or break my depression.

2. And...there is almost never a “reason.”

I definitely know my spells of blues are often set off by certain triggers... But ultimately these triggers are not what cause my depression, or necessarily what I am depressed about. I honestly usually do not know what causes it. It just is.

3. Tasks that should be easy and painless are exhausting.

Getting ready for work feels like climbing a fucking mountain, and actually going to work, well, that's Mt. Everest. Going out? That gets old pretending to have a good time, when I'm really just fucking tired. But I go out anyway, because I must try.

4. My depression affects every area of my life.

It affects my relationships, my family, my jobs, my grades, my weight...

I have to make a conscious effort not to push the people I love away because I feel so undeserving of them...That would not be fair to them or to me.

Work and school are made increasingly difficult... the ability to concentrate is watered down by the dark cloud over my head.

I constantly gain and lose weight because of my change in eating habits. Sometimes I do not eat enough, sometimes I eat way too much.

5. I am always on a pursuit for temporary fixes and distractions.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. I have met some neat people on my pursuits. I have had some fun times on my pursuits.

And in these pursuits of temporary happiness, a sense of hope often arises within me that perhaps I'll find something a little more permanent.

The problem is that I usually don't.

I want to fix myself independently. Maybe this is a problem.

6. I always feel heavy and tired.

I am sluggish and slow. I feel like I'm treading through water all day.

7. Things that are normally important to me don't seem to matter. This breaks my heart.

I used to love so many things. I know somewhere deep inside of me that I still love these things...but with my depression, I literally just do not care. News that should be exciting and wonderful gives me no reaction. It seems that I am always disinterested and distant. Contrary to how it may appear, this hurts me and I WANT to care. I try to care.

8. It kicks me when I'm up.

When things seem to be getting better, I am almost seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, my depression sneaks in again. It is something I must constantly fight in order to try and maintain that little bit of happy.

9. It makes me bizarrely emotional to see other people happy, because I so intensely miss the beauty of happiness.

Every time I go to church and see a cute little family or a happy old lady, I literally weep once I get into my car after mass- I sob...ugly cry, drool, snot, the whole nine yards. I am not sad because it is sad, I am sad because it is beautiful, I am sad because I remember when seeing such things gave me such a profound amount of joy.

10. Contrary to how it may sometimes appear, I am ALWAYS trying to be happy.

Sometimes, the bare minimum is more than enough...I must acknowledge the bare minimum's strength and sparkle, because it is a step above nothing which is where giving up boldly resides.

And sometimes, when the annoying girl next to me is complaining that she got a B on ONE fucking test, I just have to breathe and pat myself on the back that I even WENT to class that day.

And sometimes, even when I want no one to look at me, I demand that they do (via red lipstick and cute shoes) because I used to think that I deserved it.

And sometimes, when I feel very dark and think "what's the fuckin point anyway?" when it's the time of night where I'm supposed to take my medicine, I swallow that Zoloft whole.

And sometimes, even when I've found that it is redundant and I would rather do just about any other activity, I make myself go to therapy anyway.

I am ferociously working on finding the light.
"Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark in the hopeless swamps of the not-quite, the not-yet, and the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish in lonely frustration for the life you deserved and have never been able to reach. The world you desire can be won. It exists... it is real... it is possible... it's yours.” - Ayn Rand, "Atlas Shrugged"