Yes I am pleased to say that my old ‘friend’ the Black Dog has become only a transient visitor, here today gone tomorrow…kind of! So since my previous post on this subject, Has anyone seen a Black Dog, things have settled some more. The depression has been back, but really nothing to overly concern me. Mornings are the time when I am most likely to feel flat but providing I get myself up and going I usually break the cycle, and since my new job requires me to be up at 4.30am five days a week, I am fairly well covered.
The other helpful thing about my new job is that at no time am I able to just drift off and dwell in my thoughts. I am either trying to maneuver a bus through heavy traffic or around inner suburban streets, or I am interacting with the passengers as they come and go. All round my mind is well occupied…this is so different from my previous office job that had become totally boring and something I could do in my sleep (or in a state of depression).
So all round I am feeling a lot stronger, a lot more positive. On bad days I can face them knowing that I can manage, and still feel a sense of accomplishment and, if I can make somebody else’s day a bit better then it’s still been a good day.
I am still on my medication and at this point I don’t see myself coming off it for a while, I am just not that sure of how strong I really am. Also, I have been getting out a bit more recently and my wife has detected some of my ‘old’, ‘odd’ behaviors, so one step at a time. The other thing that does concern me about coming off the meds is, what happens if I start to slip and that triggers anxiety attacks, I do not want to go back there!
So what’s the moral of this story? Depression/mental illness is not something that will necessarily leave you, even with treatment. Treatment however can make a big difference but it takes time as well as trial and error, but don’t give up. Always look for ways within your life that can help you…get a new job, something you like rather than something that pays well or has some prestige to it. Help others, not just by social media but by getting out and getting involved, have that interaction with others – even if this means some kind of group therapy where you can use your experience to assist others.
I know I still have a long way to go and that I am still going to have bad times, but right now I am feeling liberated from that old dog, he’s still there but he doesn’t have the hold that he did, he’s not tearing me down and making even my good days bad….let’s hope I still feel the same tomorrow!!!! (Just joking)