I am depression. I am black and white in a colored world. Grey clouds on a sunny day. Brown grass after a spring rain. A barren tree at the height of summer. Shadows at noon.
I am depression. I laugh with others, but cry alone. Smile when deeply sad. Appear full when truly empty. Believing when doubting. Optimistic when pessimistic. Hopeful when hopeless. Loving life when despairing. Behind my pleasant mask is bottomless darkness. Unexplainable misery. Persistent unhappiness.
I am depression. I am the wrong side of the bed. The short fuse. The last nerve. The final straw. About to be pushed over the edge.
I am depression. I am the whole punched in the wall. The dent in the door. The tire rubber left on the cement driveway. The whimper from the dog. The cowering child.
I am depression. I am the missed Super Bowl or seventh game of the World Series. Cob webs on the golf clubs. An untouched camera. A grounded drone.
I am depression. I am a daughter’s missed pinning. A son’s missed basketball game. A spouse’s missed community production.
I am depression. I am uncombed hair. Unshaved face. Unbrushed teeth. Wrinkled clothes.
I am depression. I am the lonely chair in a dark room. The closed door. The “do not disturb” demeanor. The affectionless bedroom.
I am depression. I am the extra bowl of ice cream. Tight fitting pants. Grazing. Craving. Insatiable appetite.
I am depression. I am spoiled milk. Moldy bread. An untouched meal. Dysfunctional taste buds.
I am depression. I am the movies watched through the night. Tossing and turning. Twisted blankets. Untucked sheets.
I am depression. I am the missing Wednesday between Tuesday and Thursday. The endless nap. The 18-hour sleep.
I am depression. I am the shortened shopping trip. Half-mowed lawn. The rest required before completely dressed.
I am depression. I am the leg that endlessly jumps up and down. Drumming fingers. Wringing hands. Pacing feet. Exaggerated startle reflex. Trading chairs.
I am depression. I am the unexplained back pain. Relentless headache. Upset stomach. Cramping colon.
I am depression. I am the “what ifs” and “if onlys” that crowd your thoughts. The “should haves” and the “ought to haves.” The bowed head and slumping shoulders. Evasive eyes. Dreadful memories. Exaggerated faults. Unforgiveable mistakes.
I am depression. I am the third reading of the same page. Unheard radio. Unwatched TV. Unfinished puzzle. The long pause between sentences. Unanswered question. The unmade decision.
I am depression. I am the missed meeting. Unfinished assignment. Incomplete project. Late paper. First warning. Pink slip.
I am depression. I am the second glass of wine. Third bottle of beer. Extra pain pill. The anxiety med taken before time. The chased loss. Fast curve. Equipmentless climb.
I am depression. I am the thoughts that envy the dead. The settling of accounts. The saying of goodbyes.
I am depression. I am both young and old. Rich and poor. Educated and uneducated. Male and female. I am every race, color, religion, national origin, ethnic group, and sexual orientation.
I am depression. I make survivors strong. Sufferers compassionate. Wounded healers. Victims advocates.
The LORD be with you.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255
For information about depression see: