l o v e . l i v e . t r a v e l. e a t. p r a i s e.
Some days are harder than others. Like, extremely hard. Like, just trying to get out of bed takes the strength most people would use to complete a marathon. On my best days I’ve travelled to the other side of the world-but on my worst days, I can’t even bring myself to go beyond my bedroom door. I’ve been having those worst days a lot more lately. Where a dark cloud seems to just be hanging there all the time, and the only place you feel safe is tucked up tight under all those covers. This isn’t about not wanting to get out of bed because you’re so tired from your busy social life, or merely wanting to stay in bed and snuggle, listening to the rain and avoiding the perils of being outdoors in winter-these feelings of depression go beyond choice. You feel bound to your bed because, ironically, being anywhere else makes you feel trapped. You try to reach out to friends to let them know that you’re not okay and that you need them, yet in praying for just one message asking how you are, your phone screen refuses to light up. It’s tough and everyone has their different ways of coping with depression when it hits you hard. However I have a few little things which have helped me when I feel like I just can’t face the world:
1. Don’t feel guilty if you don’t make it out of bed or beyond your room. You are not choosing to feel like this and it has effects more than anyone who has never had to face it could know. If you can’t move-don’t. Stay in bed. Rest. Cry. Sleep. Take time out at first to relax and be okay with doing nothing.
2. Take your time. You don’t have to leap out of bed, or feel bad for taking a little longer with the getting up process. Ease into the day and don’t rush or put too much pressure on yourself.
3. Take a hot, steamy shower. Let the warm water pour down on you and wash away the craziness of life. Enjoy something small such as this. Let the water and steam clear your mind, use this as a meditative time and pray about the stuff weighing heavy on your heart.
4. Do something you truly love. It could be so simple, yet bring you so much joy. Have a coffee whilst doing nothing else, and savour the taste on every sip. Watch your favourite movie or TV show, as many times as you like. Immerse yourself into an alternate reality in your favourite book. Plant a pot plant. Eat the chocolate. Take a walk along the beach. Do whatever makes you happy and will help to bring your smile back.
5. When you have enough strength to be around people, only surround yourself with people who will love you, support you, and build you up. Unfortunately not all of your friends and family fall into this category when they should. So be careful to stay away from people who drain your energy and surround you with negativity. When you are not yourself, you don’t need to be in this sort of environment.
Everyone is different, and has their own ways of fighting off those down days, so don’t feel like you’re doing anything wrong if you’re not doing these things! I just know how unhelpful it is to have people tell you that you shouldn’t feel sad; that you just have to buck up and move on; that you have to get over it and get on with life. None of that is helpful, especially from people who don’t understand what it feels like to hate every inch of your being, and for no longer seeing a reason to be on this earth. I have found that some days these things help, others maybe not so much. Take it one day at a time. Try and take it easy in as many moments as you can. Be kind to yourself today.