Growing up, we are all shown multiple ways in which being homeless is one of the worst things to go through. What we are not shown, though, is how much worse it is for those lucky enough to come back from it. Does everyone really think that getting a home and job just automatically makes things like they were before? News flash, those things help, but the darkness is still there. Almost like a PTSD type of thing.
Being homeless sucks, especially with children. I speak from experience. If you are lucky, you have access to a tent and maybe even an air mattress or two. Thankfully, for my family this past February, my in-laws had a backyard we could set our tent and mattresses up in.
We were only homeless for a month, but there is only so much a person can take before they break. Before they have hit their rock bottom. Being homeless was mine. (What was yours?)
Real Talk Time
Being homeless, even if for only a month, was the worst thing that I had had to go through since the passing of my father when I was 14-years-old. My husband, our two children (ages four a one at the time), and I slept in a four-person tent in the backyard of my in-laws rental (at the time).
When I was trying to think of the positives of the situation, I was able to enjoy the fact that we were not homeless in the dead of a Florida summer. I was also able to appreciate the fact that we had the means to a tent and two twin air mattresses. Often times, a homeless man, woman, or even family are not as lucky.
As the days went by and our situation stayed the same, I had begun to circle the depression drain. The only thing I started looking forward to was going to bed at a decent time every night. After a couple of weeks, I barely talked to anyone, even my husband. I did not want to do anything with anyone, and I just wanted to be alone.
My husband and I grew distant and stopped talking and touching besides a quick hug or kiss here and there. I, personally, was at the lowest point of my life that entire month and I did not think it could get any worse. In a way, it got so much better, but in come the side effects of the situation.
I had no idea that my depression could get any worse, but it did…and it was bad. I stopped showering regularly (gross, I know). I sat on the couch and watched Netflix while I ate whatever I wanted. I stopped cleaning.
My chest felt so heavy every day that passed that it was crippling. I dreaded going to work and, for the longest time, was triggered by the thought of it. I dealt with this literal crippling depression for five months straight. I would have a day or two every once in a while where I could finally breathe, but then it would be right back to struggling just to find the air to survive.
*takes a deep breath* Just talking about how I felt makes my chest a little heavy.
I do not remember when it was that the depression finally subsided, but it has, and I am so thankful. I went weeks without feeling depressed, and it was such an amazing experience after the months that I had been dragging myself through. Sadly, I have been feeling the depression starting to try and creep its way back, but I have been successful in fighting it off until I am alone at night (which is an improvement, believe it or not).
The best thing those who deal with depression can do it keep hanging on and pushing through each day. Our sunny days are out there waiting for us.