I honestly don’t remember the exact date I started this blog. I do know that I almost never got started because I was extremely worried what type of feedback I would receive once I began writing about my depression openly. My aim was to try to convey to those reading what I wrote what it is like to live with depression every day and to give myself a creative outlet for some of the things I was feeling inside. I never considered myself an expert on depression, but I thought I knew enough to frame it for someone else.

Turns out, though, I didn’t know as much as I thought.

This realization hit me fairly hard this weekend as I sat listening to one of my favorite podcasts (Quick shout out to Carolla Digital and Chris Laxamana for the Résumé podcast.). In the midst of what was a fairly interesting discussion with author, screenwriter, and producer Dean Lorey, I was suddenly startled to find that I wasn’t really enjoying what I was hearing. I switched my iPod over to some music, and the same thing happened. And then it suddenly hit me that I haven’t experienced a whole lot of joy in anything I had been doing lately. It was as if I had become numb to feeling good.

depression2As I pondered this, I realized that this particular level of depression was something new to me. Even in the worst of times, I could always find something to provide me with a sense of fun. Even now, this feeling is more fleeting than constant. I know there is something out there that will ultimately lift my spirits, and I simply have to stay the course of looking for it to figure out what that is. Still, there is a sort of bottomlessness to what I’m currently feeling, as if I will never stop falling. This, I know, is what many people with severe depression experience each and every day.

I thought I knew what joylessness was, but I did not know the depths it could descend to (and I probably still don’t). In discovering this, I came to realize there were a great many things about depression that I did not know as well as I thought I did. I did not know, for example, the hopelessness of feeling as if things will never get better. I did not know the sting of losing love and friendship. I did not know the agony of feeling separated from God. And I did not know the weight and pressure of life that can become so heavy a person can grow weary of living it.

In the past few months, I have experienced all of that, although I am sure I have not felt it to the degree of some people on this earth. I am sure there is a level of despair in this life that I have not even sniffed yet, and I am sure there are people who experience this despair every day of their lives. I thought I knew what they were going through, but it turns out I only had a cursory understanding. While I do not wish to share the experience, I want to know more so I can have greater empathy for those around me who struggle. Having had even a taste of the darkness, I do not wish it upon anyone else.

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I am going to do my best to keep posting here as often as I can, but my master’s classes for the spring semester will be starting up again this Tuesday. Trying to keep up with my studies will be eating up quite a bit of my time, but I want to write here as much as possible. If I don’t make an appearance for a few days, though, just remember you can always email me at info@lightsinthedarkness.net. I’d love to stay in touch with everyone!

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