Depression: Slices of Heaven Served in Hell

Lindsay just massaged my head and neck for a moment and I said: “I didn’t know they served little slices of heaven down in hell.” I was partly joking. But the amount I was not joking just shows where my mind has been today and recently. And here is how I’m working through it.

I’m scared to look at my mind today. I just had the music on and didn’t want to turn it off to do this thought download because I didn’t want to feel more alone with my thoughts and feelings. I don’t even want to look at my goals. I am so ashamed at how I have worked, or not worked, toward my goals this past week. 

I feel not good enough and like I am trudging through shi!* inside my brain that is chest high, smells horrible, feels terrible, is slow and viscous. 

black chain
Photo by lalesh aldarwish on Pexels.com

It feels so heavy in my head, like a 30lb bowling ball is hooked to a chain and that chain is hooked to the inside of my brain. The bowling ball is just dangling on a 5 ft long chain, long enough to be super annoying but short enough that it won’t rest on the floor so I have to bare the weight constantly. There is no way to rest it on something, it just pulls and drags no matter where I am or what I’m doing, sometimes taking my legs out from underneath me. 

It feels like there is no way for me to come out of this. A tiny part of me thinks I can but 99.9% of me thinks “there’s no way!” 

Stuck. 

Bogged down. 

Dragging. 

Anchored. 

tornado on body of water during golden hour
Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

I am terrified of these feelings and I’ve been totally resisting them. After all the work I’ve been putting in, these feelings shouldn’t be coming on so strong. Can’t I get a break? Can’t I work through these things one time and be done with them! Are they always going to keep coming at me like shards of glass swirling in a personal, individualized hurricane. 

I don’t want to know the answer. I’m scared it might be “yes” and “always” to some degree. 

I am learning to handle these thoughts and feelings but not all the time, not continuously. I’d like a break from it sometimes, especially when it’s inconvenient. Especially when I’m busy or tired. Especially when I am on the verge of really doing something great. 

light trails on highway at night
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I know that resisting these feelings makes it worse but why do I still do it? It’s a knee-jerk, a reflex, a habit. Those pathways in my brain are well-forged and very efficient. Damn my brain and it’s desire to be efficient! Sure it’s helpful and “by design” but it sure makes it hard to change. 

I have to believe I can forge new pathways. Like bushwhacking through dense foliage on a new terrain, leaving the old trails alone for long enough that they become overgrown, less entrenched, and eventually altogether abandoned, forgotten (FYI: this is actually how it works neurologically).

accomplishment action adventure atmosphere
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I know my brain is designed to resist change, to make it harder before it gets easier. So how can I find the commitment to persist, the gumption to push through? 

Forging new paths takes a lot of energy. Defaulting to the old ones is so easy. These old paths are familiar but not really comfortable. I’ve identified them as detrimental. I don’t like the destination of the Ashamed About Depression Trail. Feeling ashamed about being depressed: now that’s a butt-kicker! 

I’m ready for a new destination. I may have fallen off the new path momentarily, but I can get back on. And what if the trail I’ve forged so far is still there and not overgrown? 

What if I could pick up right where I left off? 

What if I can learn from this and have even more commitment and stick-to-it-iveness? 

What if I get back on and just keep moving forward? 

Now THAT feels good to ask these questions! Suddenly a lighter feeling is coming on. I’m filled with love and self-compassion. Acting from these feelings will definitely take me to the destination I desire. And I can feel the excitement of that destination right now if I put my brain to work on it. 

mountains nature sky sunny
Photo by Stokpic on Pexels.com

I can’t guarantee the future and I can’t change the past. But, right now, in this moment, I can choose self-compassion over self-loathing. I can choose love over shame. And how much better that will serve me as I work through my depression! 

Am I still depressed? Yes. But now I can go toward the depression without fearing it so much. I can accept it and become engaged in life instead of shunning reality and wanting to check out. I feel like I can look at my goals again with hope. I can look at the future with courage. I can take off the shackles and move forward. Goodbye bowling ball! Au revoir brain sewage! Hello present moment! 

photo of orange yellow and red hello molding clay
Photo by Maria Tyutina on Pexels.com

All I have is right now and I can do this. I don’t need a villain to fight or someone to save. I don’t need to be a victim. I can do it for me. Because I’m worth it. I am worthy. And I’m worthwhile. I am enough. I always have been enough. And I will always be enough. Because I’m here and I’m human. I was designed this way by someone much smarter than me. Now what am I going to do about it?

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1 thought on “Depression: Slices of Heaven Served in Hell

  1. You are worthy, worthwhile, and enough–and even more. I am too.

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