When you deal with depression the most mundane things can make you happy or sad. You hear an old song on the radio and it reminds you of a time from the past, the nostalgic wave that you feel is the result of some kind of endorphin being released in your body. This chemical reaction creates a very physical reaction, which you define as happy or sad. This happens to us all but a person suffering from depression seems to feel it harder, or at least thinks about it more.
Sad is not, at least for me, the appropriate word. I’m not sad, I’m just not happy. The term I use is Grey. I have bright days and grey days. So, if I am feeling grey even things like my favourite food may have no impact on my mood. Sometimes I wake up happy and sometimes I don’t, most times though, I have no idea how I feel until I am well into my day.
It is why small things can have such a profound impact on my mood. I hear a song that I really hate but it reminds me of a good time and I feel the brightness of the day. I hear a really good song but it reminds of a friend that is no longer around and I feel the greyness. I know it happens to us all but for most people these mood creating feelings don’t linger. Most people when they feel the grey creep in are able to beat it back with happy thoughts and if it’s a happy feeling, they are able to fuel it and ride the wave. I am not able to do this, when a mood arrives it lingers and I’m always glad when the bright ones show up. Truth is, grey kind of sucks.
Don’t feel bad for me because I don’t feel bad for myself. No day for me is totally grey or totally bright. At any time throughout a day some event will happen that will cause one of my triggers to pop and a grey day can turn bright, which is always preferred over the reverse. I used songs as an example but I have many triggers, most I do not know about. Sunshine always seems to improve my mood, and seeing my grandchildren. My children used to do that for me when they were very young and still do it now for the most part. They are adults now and sometimes they bring their adult problems to my door. That never improves my mood. But their children are young and full of wonder and radiate bright whenever I am with them.
Today was a day that had all the markings of being a grey day. Seven inches of snow fell yesterday and I was going to have to clear it all. My disdain for winter in general is bad enough but with the snow and a -26C temperature I figured I was doomed. It is a tough way to spend your day off. But lo and behold when I arose and checked my e-mail, I had new bookings for down south and for some unexplained reason it made me happy. It doesn’t always but today it did. Removing the snow from my property or at least the areas I need access to, took almost 3 hours but part way through the job the sun came out and warmed the day enough that only my left toes froze. It also warmed my mood. Go figure.
Left toes excluded, I managed the job and here I now sit writing this blog. Happy as can be. I have many reasons to not be but as I stated before the bright lingers and I’ll take it. I’m sure something will happen that will change this, it always seems too. But when it comes to depression you embrace the bright. I hope anyone that reads this has as bright a day as I am having and I hope the feeling lingers for you too.