I’m still tired. My muscles are achy, I can’t stop yawning and I find loud persistent noises, like lots of people talking or music playing, scary and alarming, because I don’t have the energy to process them properly. And I’m always tired. I’ve been tired for months now, if not years. When I sleep enough or relax more I get less tired, but it never completely goes away. I can’t remember the last time I didn’t feel tired at all.
Just existing is an effort. If depression was a pool, I’d be using all my energy just to stay afloat rather than making progress towards the edge so I could get out. If I was a microwave, all my settings would be variations on ‘sad’, ‘weary’ and ‘lifeless’. I wish I had flu or some kind of physically obvious condition so there was a justification for all of this, instead of having an invisible illness that lots of people think they understand but don’t. Being misunderstood is frustrating, and frustration is tiring.
I’m having counselling at the moment (specifically psychotherapy – I’ve been told of for trying to refer to it variously as ‘anger management’ or ‘therapy for psychos’) and my counsellor pointed out in our last session that I *shouldn’t* be tired all the time. I am an otherwise healthy young woman who exercises and eats vegetables and gets (almost) enough sleep. The problem, she claims, is that stress and anxiety and frustration use up a huge amount of energy. This makes sense but doesn’t fix the problem; maybe that will happen next session.
In the new year people are supposed to make sweeping resolutions to change their life for the better, get into good habits and out of bad ones and have a new start. I know from experience that I can’t do this. Big goals are not for the depressed; I don’t have enough self belief to focus on anything big and distant, and neither do I have the inclination to make a list of little steps that build up to something. If I started trying to get better I’d have to stop trying to just cope and then things would be worse than they are now. I can still get small amounts of joy from things like a nice cup of tea though, so maybe that will have to do for this year.