The Well of Depression
This essay is a part of our Peculiar Minds series.
The darkness of the well is concentrated. It’s hard to see up, to see light, to see reason. But in the back of my mind, I know there has to be an explanation for feeling the way I do. For feeling trapped and dark. For feeling so completely alone.
The checklist, let me look at the checklist again! There has to be a reason why I feel this way. It doesn’t make sense. No sense. None. It’s madness!
My marriage is great! My husband is always there for me, working hard to provide, cooking meals, cleaning the house, shopping, loving, healing…
My kids are healthy and beautiful. They are not needy, nor clingy, nor colicky. The baby eats well and is happy. It can’t be motherhood or children.
My testimony of the gospel? No, my faith is rock-solid. I love Church. I love my callings.
Perhaps it’s my lack of friends? That’s ridiculous. I have a lot of friends and they love me.
Then what in the world could it be? This well of darkness that clouds my mind and makes me want to sleep, cry, scream, run, and hide all at once?
Vitamin D, calcium, Omegas 3-6-9, B-6/B-complex, magnesium, iron. Check.
Running 4 miles a day. Check.
Eating fruits and vegetables and whole grains. Check.
Spending time outdoors. Check.
Losing 40 pounds. Check.
Lots and lots of prayer. Check.
Another baby. Then another. In between, trying to climb out of the well again. Exercise lacks, nutrition lacks… trying again. And again.
It worked before, why is it not working now? Each time I start up the sides of the well, feeling the guidance of Heavenly Father, I seem to reach a point where I slip and fall, and there I am, trapped, stuck, and I have to start climbing all over again.
Trying something else.
Reduce stress. Essentials, only.
There’s a reason for the dark well. In the recesses of your mind, it is influenced by your environment, yes, but more importantly, it’s something unable to click and connect inside of your mind.
“Like my asthma?”
“Like a diabetic?”
You may have to take medication for a while, at least until after your childbearing years.
“Even with exercise and nutrition?”
Years of study and years of patience. Focus: tools of therapy, tools of medical science. Tools of faith and the priesthood.
Many days are good. Many days are beautiful! Life outside the well is sweet to behold, but I sit upon the edge, only a moment and inches from falling in again. I am tied to the well; I cannot go far. But by being tied, I don’t fall as far when I do.
I can climb out again. And again.
My arms are getting strong. My legs are getting fast.
The well is familiar, but the well no longer wins.
Image credit: CPonte Brick Well
The Entire Series
- Forum – Is Mental Illness a Latter Day Plague?
- Resources (research)
- Resources for Help with Mental Illness by Paul
- Understanding PTSD by Robin Grosland
- Anxiety Disorders, Including PTSD (research)
- The Diagnosis by anonymous
- Understanding Asperger’s by Kathy Ward
- Understanding Dementia by Cassandra Jones
- Different Issues for Children (research)
- Asperger’s and Autism (research)
- Simply Depression by Jendoop
- How to Help Someone Who is Depressed: an LDS perspective by Sarah Hancock
- Forum – Does Committing Suicide Consign Someone to Hell?
- The Well of Depression by Cheryl
- Panic, OCD, Grandma and Me by NotMolly
- Understanding Panic Disorder, Agoraphobia, and OCD by Robison Wells
- Free at Last by anonymous
- Forum – No One Wants to Hear They’re Wrong
- Understanding P0rnography Addiction by Dr. Kevin Skinner
- What is Real? Living Without Diagnosis by anonymous
- A Reader’s Story of Hope by anonymous
- Understanding Bipolar II Disorder by Tresa Edmunds (Reese Dixon)
- What is Bipolar Disorder? (research)
- Choosing Treatment through Revelation by Bonnie
- Overcoming Anxiety and Depression Without Medication by Aaron Anderson
- How Do We Embrace Those with Mental Illness by Jendoop
- What is Schizophrenia? (research)
- Understanding Schizophrenia by Judy Hall
- Understanding a Roommate with Schizophrenia by anonymous
- Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder by Melissa Horsley
- My Path Down the Rabbit Hole by anonymous
- Mental Illness FHE Lesson by Jendoop
- Healing by Michelle