For the past three years I’ve had trouble with accepting gifts, particularly for my birthday. I’m not sure exactly the reasons behind this but it must stem from feelings of unworthiness, wanting to be small, discrete and invisible. I suspect this has been a symptom of my eating disorder and co-morbid conditions such as anxiety and depression.
Yesterday, I opened three years worth of birthday cards and presents. It was incredibly overwhelming and took a great deal of time. It was hard to accept so much love in one go after I’d been avoiding it for so long, but it does prove that even if you’ve been out of the social loop for some time, people don’t forget you.
Depression manifests in different ways, interrupting the lives of each individual it plagues. Yet, it is not uncommon to feel flat, numb or distant from everything that is going on around you.
Unfortunately, while depression is relatively well known and to and extent, understood, it is too often trivialised by those having a bad day or people who are frustrated and unmotivated. Subsequently, those experiencing genuine bouts of clinical depression feel ashamed or silly to be struggling with the disease. In a piece published by the Modern Woman’s Survival Guide today, I wrote about the misuse of the word depression and the trivialisation of the condition. You can read it here.
The truth is, it is likely that someone close to you is in the throws of depression. Be there to support them. They are unlikely to ask for help but just having you by their side will provide them with some solace and peace, a welcome antidote to the dark waves crashing heavily in their mind.
Thank you to all those who have done so for me.