When there is no light at the end of the tunnel
We are ready for spring. We are ready for the economy to show signs of picking up. We are ready to start feeling more optimistic. But it is still quite cold. The economy is not picking up. We don’t feel very optimistic.
We are trying to feel grateful for what we do have. We are bravely getting through each day, amidst fear and frustration. But maybe the thread that is allowing us to hold on and hold it together is becoming frayed and thin. We are getting tired of trying. We feel like giving up.
We see no light at the end of the tunnel.
A lot of us are getting depressed.
Depression isn’t just about feeling sad or lonely or angry.
When a person is depressed, life loses its life juice. Nothing feels good. Nothing is inspiring. Nothing is stimulating. A depressed person feels like a cardboard cut out instead of a living and breathing human. The emptiness and nothingness alternate with self-loathing, (we think we should be more hopeful, more energetic, more motivated) fear and pain.
I wish I had a simple one-size-fits-all way to treat depression and help people feel instantly alive and hopeful again. The truth is recovery from depression is a challenging process.
But it is possible to get on to the track toward feeling better.
Getting on that track means getting professional help.
A depressed person often has great difficulty imagining anything could help. And, he or she is likely to believe reaching out for support is an admission of failure.
So, we need to notice when our friends and family and coworkers are depressed or heading into depression when it feels draining to be with them, when we feel hopeless when we talk with them, when they are not returning our calls, canceling plans, not taking care of themselves physically.
We need to remind one another professional help does help. No, it doesn’t take away financial problems or relationship problems. It doesn’t give you a way to return to your youth and make different choices this time around.
Professional help does give a depressed person a plan to move in the direction of feeling better and a way to keep going forward.
This commitment to ‘get on track’ toward finding life again, just like a commitment to be a good mother or a good worker or a good husband, reflects strength and determination. And, while there still may be no light at the end of the tunnel, we can learn how to wire everyday life, woes and fears and all, with electricity and light switches and illumination.
” Danielle B. Klotzkin, licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, provides psychotherapy for clients who are looking for a way to move forward through relationship issues, problems with alcohol, drugs, or managing money, eating and body issues, trauma, grief and loss, depression, bipolar disorder and anxiety. You can contact her at (530) 470-2233.