Renée de Nève Photography Renée de Nève Photography


November 19th, 2021

Depression is the invisible black hole inside of you, waiting for it’s energy to suck up the sunshine bit by bit from the inside. 

Subtle or with vengeance. It leaps in and defeats every bit of strength. Crushing it’s almighty will. Bulldozing the sun rays and colours. Suppressing any emotions, be it good or bad. Amplifying the insecure voices, making it unbearable to repeatedly feel nothing. Be nothing. Feeling worthless. Clouds of doubt seeping in from everywhere. 

There is sadness and there is depression. The depression is sadness compressed. Compressed into nothing but shame and stillness. Like a virus invading the body, depression is the virus for the mind. There is no past or future but just the presence. The empty presence. An invisible prison, that wraps you into an invisible confined space with no exit signs to be seen. You cannot escape, you cannot fathom why. You are trapped. Slowly taking every bit of sunshine and rainbow in its path. There is no feeling of love. No happiness. No warmth. No hope. No will. No fight. Just you and the mind being invaded by thoughts, intruding the peaceful garden you worked hard to create. 

Having been confronted with grief again recently, my concerns were mostly not about overcoming the acuteness of grief but whether or not I would spiral into a phase of depression and angst. What many people did not know, is that just over a year ago, I really got depressed. I suffered. But I suffered of and with nothingness. After a strenuous year that was so full of anxiety, loss, stress, tears, love, joy and new beginnings, I for the first time had time to myself. And it did not serve me well at the time. From everything to absolutely nothing. And it was not like it was nothing, but that’s how my deeper self felt. Not a lot. No desire, no joy, no spark, no colour and on top of that I just cried and felt so worthless and like a failure. I have days that appear here or there with this sort of feeling and as quickly as it comes, it goes. But this did not go away. Some days were better than others. But on no day, did I feel worthy, no day did I truly feel content, no day where I felt any sort of motivation or desire to get up. And so I didn’t and when I did, it was obligatory. This depression lasted for a good 5-6 months and was the hardest time for me. It was the time I really truly grieved. It was the time that endless tears streamed down my face. It was the time that every emotional pain was just as sharp and intense as physical pain. When I did not cry, I just lay there and wishing for the time to pass quicker so I could get better, that the time was needed but I knew somewhere, someday it would get better but I felt nowhere near it. I just wanted for time to go faster. I couldn’t bare this time. I barely lived. Food had no taste and as indifferent to me as it gets. I could no be around family because I felt such a degree of shame and failure and felt so out of place. I could not be around humans. But I did not want to be alone. In the midst of this, I was not aware of how badly I was depressed. Or more so the longevity. I just thought one day It would stop. Like it usually does. When my off day is followed by magic and rainbows. But that day never really came. But I remember the day it got better. This day gave me hope. It gave me a sense of love and appreciation. It was the first time I felt so apprecitative of the help I had received. It took me almost four months to go and see the Dr.  I had never ever sat somewhere in a medical setting where my tears were about to be unleashed. But I really tried to contain my tears. In hindsight, maybe I should have just let go, because moments of emotional release are so important but I don’t know. I just couldn’t. 

Now some months I have spent building the foundations again, and really knowing the difference between sadness, grief and depression, I just appreciate  that I feel things. Even the sad moments, are in some ways beautiful moments because I am sad. But I feel it and I know feeling teary and sad is also completely normal. But in these moments, I know there is no shame or sense of failure. That my belief, this too shall pass, will lead me to moments when life can really spring into life. But even when I am sad, I can smile and see that beautiful sunset and know life is hard sometimes, but sometimes it is so simple and full of magic. That is not depression and when I feel this, I am just thankful I can cry and smile and feel good or bad, but not be compelled with nothingness or a sense of shame. 

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