worriedI think people worry about me a lot. I can’t say I blame them. Heck, I worry about me a lot. I believe the level of worry concerning me rose, however, when I started being more open about my struggles with depression. Again, this is totally understandable. There is no way to sugarcoat a condition whose sole purpose seems to be to drag your soul into the abyss. Honesty in my darkest moments does not translate into pleasant conversation.

As much as I appreciate all the concern, though, it isn’t necessarily what I want. Worry is a pretty easy state of being to call up. I can worry about a friend, and I can also worry I left the iron on at home. I can work up worry about a great many things without much effort at all. It requires more of me to actually care about someone or something. Caring indicates an investment outside of myself. At its very deepest level, it can even tap into the greatest emotion of them all – love.

I am not choosy. I will accept all three – love, care, and worry. Sometimes, though, just knowing you’re being worried about feels hollow. To be honest, knowing I am a cause of worry for someone can make me feel like a burden to them. And love, well, that word seems to scare people almost as much as depression, as though speaking it aloud indicates just a little too much commitment. To admit to caring about someone, however, seems something most are capable of.

And that’s really what I want most of the time – just to know somebody cares.

I think possibly the greatest lie depression can tell a person is that no one cares. Even if you are surrounded by family and friends who hang on your every word, depression will tell you they are only there out of obligation, because they have to be. Every kind word directed your way seems disingenuine, every noble gesture false in some way. The goal of this lie is to convince a person that no one would notice if they were alive or dead, to make them feel insignificant and small.

Maybe we should all stop worrying about each other so much and start caring about each other more. Share a kind word with someone. Send a text. Give a compliment. Tell somebody you love them. Anything to defeat this atrocious lie that grows in our hearts, grows in my heart.

So don’t worry about me.


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