I haven’t written anything here in a while, and it’s at a time like this I’m always tempted to write an “I’m back!” kind of post. Truth be told, though, I’m kind of sick of doing that. For one thing, I didn’t really go anywhere; I just didn’t write anything. It also seems sort of egotistical to say, as if I believed people were sitting on the edge of their seats waiting for me to write something. I know this blog has some followers, but I’m not so full of myself as to believe it’s something someone couldn’t live without. So, from now on, if I don’t write anything for a while, it’s just ’cause I got stuff goin’ on. Ya know?

In actuality, the reason I haven’t been writing much is twofold. As many of you already know, I’m attending graduate school to attain a master’s degree in counseling. Don’t worry; I realize the irony in this. “The depressed guy wants to counsel other people? This should work out well.” I’m finding, though, that my own struggles have given me quite a bit of empathy for others experiencing the same thing, so I’m actually doing really well so far. In fact, I think I’m going to have all A’s this semester. The only downside is it leaves me virtually no time to write. Now that my finals are over, though, I can get back to it … at least until mid-January, when classes resume.

The other reason is a little trickier to explain. Again, as many of you already know, I lost my job of nearly 11 years at the end of July. I don’t want to go into any details, but the entire experience was very traumatic for me. Still is, actually. I’ve been working again since September, so it’s not as though I’ve just been lounging around the past four months or so. When I lost that job, however, I lost quite a bit of myself. To put it even more honestly, I felt as if myself was why I lost the job in the first place, and I didn’t know what to do with that.

So, I hid.

hidingNow, I am a very introverted person most of the time, so it’s not exactly as if I was a social butterfly before all this happened. What I’ve come to realize, though, is that I had even closed off the few outlets I did have. I basically stopped posting to Facebook or Twitter. I didn’t blog. I sort of avoided people when I did have to go out anywhere. I even took a job I believed would allow me to hide away. I was ashamed of who I was, and I believed everyone else was, too. I didn’t want to let anything out because it might come back to bite me.

Obviously, a person can’t carry on this way for long, and it was actually a conversation with one of my classmates that made me realize what I had been doing. Then one of my professors told me how I struck her as someone who valued meaningful conversation. Then I read an online article by Nanice Ellis that said, “Depression is the unavoidable by-product of not being who you really are and a direct result of repressing your Real Self.” All this began to add up, and I finally started to get the picture.

I gotta stop hiding.

Consider this post part of Phase One. Actually, on second thought, don’t. I have no actual plan, and inching my way back to reality has been a painstakingly slow process thus far. In fact, I’m not even really sure how to finish up this post, so I’ll just awkwardly jump to something kind of exciting: This blog now has its own email address!

Yes, you can now email me directly at info@lightsinthedarkness.net. In fact, I hope many of you will. It’s all part of that “meaningful conversation” thing I mentioned earlier. I love to hear other people’s stories, and I know some of them are too private to post in a public type of forum. They can be stories of successes or failures or even just stopping by to say hello. The point is, I’d like to hear from you.

And, um, yeah. That’s it.

I’m back.

 
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2 comments on “Hiding Out

  • Funny, I’m a marriage and family counselor with depression as well. I also went through the losing a job thing (I was fired after 5 1/2 years) and being traumatized by it then feeling like a loser afterwards which actually inspired me to start my blog and is the inspiration for the title. Glad you have come out of hiding.

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