Another year of life, another year living with depression, has me feeling grateful. Yes. Grateful. Even with the battles I face each day, I’m thankful to be living another day, as well as another week, which leads to another month, and, finally, another year. Not all those living with depression continue the journey. Many end their journeys.
Another year living with depression is something to be grateful for
Understandably, I don’t receive a tremendous amount of support from family, or many friends, in my journey with depression. People don’t “get it.” No one outside of the struggle can fully understand the struggle, it’s understandable. Hell, for years, I was suffering with depression without even knowing what it was. I just thought I was a super angry person, with a massively bad temper.
Plenty of people in my life ask OTHER PEOPLE AROUND ME, instead of asking ME:
- How can she smile, and make jokes, but still be struggling with depression?
- Depressed? She seems to be okay, I mean, she’s always there to pick up her kids from school.
Unfortunately, they don’t see all aspects of my life. None of them are in my house when I’m struggling to get out of bed each morning. They don’t hear me talk myself into getting out of bed, and into the car, to drive my daughter to Middle School. Not one of them stands with me in the afternoon, while not making eye contact, or talking to people, at my son’s school pick up. Why? Because, I don’t want anyone to break my concentration. I normally talk myself into picking him up, and being near people I don’t wish to spend time near. Crowds are an issue for my anxiety, which feeds my depression.
However, I do my best. I’m a mom. There’s no one else to handle my daily tasks. It’s me, or my kids suffer further from a mother with depression.
Being a mother saves me
If it was up to me, and I was living this life on my own, depression easily could take over. I seek help with my depression, because my kids deserve a mom. Am I a good mom? Who knows. They seem to be growing up well-adjusted. They’re learning lessons, and manners. Both bring home impressive grades, and teachers comment on what beautiful hearts each child has. Through their lives, empathy is something both kids show on a daily basis. Is it because of my depression? Who knows, but at least I know my depression isn’t creating little assholes.
Knowing my little ones not only learn from me, but also have things to teach me, pushes me to thank my lucky stars I’m living with depression. If I wasn’t, I’d be another statistic. Another story people hear, shake their heads over, and say “such a shame, those poor kids without a mother.”
So, I’m grateful to be living with depression. There are good days, and not so good days. Again, I have minimal support, as people in my life don’t understand depression is an actual thing. It’s not just about “being sad.” It’s not something we choose for ourselves. However, many of us choose to live our journeys with depression, to the best of our abilities. Regardless of the lack of support, we move forward.
In this life, my kids have first-hand experience living with a mother with depression. They continue to love me, and support me, as I love and support them. Help with much of my depression comes from professionals. Granted, it’d be nice to receive more understanding from family, as well as friends, but whatever. Most of them don’t even support my writing, or much of anything I do, or have done, throughout my life. Sad, but true.
Another year to be thankful for
I’ve never had suicidal thoughts. I have, on occasion, thought: are my kids better off without me? Should I move, and free them of the daily dealings of a mom with depression. I have an unhealthy fear my children will inherit depression. Thankfully, right now, it’s just me. I know what things to look for now, unlike my parents for so much of my life.
However, even though I’m aware of what to look for, would they be better off if I lived in a different place? Am I damaging them, and their childhood? Is it crazy my kids know how to cook, and fold and put away their own laundry? Is it nuts mom rarely attends soccer games for her son? He understands why, but I’m sure it’s upsetting when he doesn’t see me on the sidelines, like I used to be.
On the other hand, I rarely miss class parties. I go on school trips, and attend many school functions. It takes a lot, but I do it.
All I can do is try, each day, and be the best mom I can be, and be grateful I’m not considering ending my journey. Another year of life, another year of living with depression, and I couldn’t be more grateful, and thankful, for the ability to live with depression. I can do this. I will do this.
Big hugs Staci, I totally understand how you are feeling and can relate as tragedy struck my family 5 years ago when a close family member chose not to fight for another year. This time of year is particularly hard while people energetically set goals etc. Keep on fighting!