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Depression from the outside can appear flimsy or an easy way out; an excuse even. The truth is of course that it is anything but easy. It can be difficult to explain to a lay person and to express what it actually feels like I sometimes use metaphor or analogy – it is just more relatable.
Lets take it back to the basics, today I wanted to get up and move. It is a simple request to the rest of the body and other people can probably do it without thinking, but it is not that easy; not so simple. It is like hauling a shelving unit full of delicate kitchenware and food across the room. The distance is small, so close you can almost touch it even, but it is just far enough away that you have to be careful. You can’t ask anyone else for help and you can’t just lay in bed. It must be done.
The way I approach this is by breaking the heavy burden down into smaller tasks, compartmentalise these things. OK, I take down each mug, plate and mixing bowl. Easy. That wasn’t so hard and it wasn’t so heavy. Then I move on to the fresh food baskets, there’s some old stuff in there and now is as good a time as any for a clear out. It is easier to tackle these past issues one by one, it actually feels good to throw away old stuff.
The aim here is obviously to break this heavy burden down into tiny pieces, remove them all one by one, that makes the once heavy thing into a very light thing. You end up in a position where you can actually move the shelving unit, move yourself. Get up and move even if it is only 2 metres. The day can be a success, and success is of course a relative term. Other people may have done this or that today but you moved a shelving unit and it was all you could do, no shame in that.
So some times I use metaphor and analogy to explain depression, other times I’m so content and my day has been so uneventful that I just describe how I moved a shelving unit from one side of the kitchen to the other. I had to, so I could scrape the parquet floor underneath.