Heather has written an awesome, light-hearted article for The Wellness Universe about how she deals with her depression when it stops in for a visit. Yes, even well into recovery from depression, it still stops by to remind us to stop and take a look at our lives when in one way or another we could be heading for a fall. She offers the novel notion that our depression is actually there to protect us from ourselves. She suggests a welcoming cup of chocolate and a heart ready to listen to an old friend instead of trying to bar the doors.
Snippets from – When My Depression Visits ~ By Heather Durling
I’ve grown to be a fairly upbeat person, but I still have days where I’m worn out, drained, exhausted and burned out. No matter how many positive affirmations, and how much real genuine gratitude I offer up for the blessings I’m given – this dark, heavy place settles in to visit me for a day or so….
….I’ve tried fighting against it, refusing to acknowledge it, denying that it’s come to chat once again. For me, this would result in an even longer stay, eventually having to deal with the inevitable dirty laundry that comes out to prove the point. All of the things that I’ve worked so hard to forget, avoid, stuff down, and look away from are pulled from Depression’s suitcase, being thrown at me with the force of “You are not okay, don’t you see?” I always crumbled at the weight of it all in the end, admitting my defeat in the deafening stubborn silence of, “You are right”.
Then I tried something radical and crazy a few years ago – I opened the door, invited my Depression in, and asked what kind of tea it would like. I sat on the couch, pulled up the familiar heavily weighted blanket, and I visited. I opened up a relaxed, accepting conversation and I said, “I’m here and I’m listening. Tell me what you need me to hear.”
When I did this, I learned that there was a true purpose for these visits. By not instantly denying and turning away, I could recognize that it wasn’t there to hurt me, it was trying to help me in its own way. In looking back over my timeline, I was able to see the trends of visitation – when I was pushing too much, in an unhealthy relationship or friendship, I had too many plates spinning, and when I was not allowing myself to feel the pain and shame from my childhood triggers….