A few short months after I launched Gwendle Vs Everything by writing about the motivational power of a shiny new year, I wrote and published a blog called “Me Vs. depression” and then I wrote not very much for a while, and then I just stopped writing altogether. For a really long time.
depression wasn’t the reason I stopped writing my blog (that was having too many things on my plate and a finite number of hours in the day) . . .
. . . but it was the main reason I never started again when things calmed down.
depression left me with very little energy, and by the time I managed to feed myself, perform basic hygiene, work at my job, and put in just enough social effort to not completely lose all of my friends there was nothing left over to put into writing or drawing or creativity. Eventually I had some energy again but My Brain told me that my blog, once shiny as the new year in which I began it, was now dingy and old and ruined because of my failure. I got back into knitting, and I taught myself to play the ukulele (poorly) and once in a while I thought about writing or even gave it a try, but all of my attempts fizzled out when depression took control of My Brain and explained to me how utterly stupid I was being.
Then, in mid-December of 2019, My Body got in on the fun! It put the issues I have in my right shoulder arm and neck into overdrive so that instead of occasional flare-ups related to dislocations and subluxations I had chronic high levels of pain with occasional numbness and/or loss of motor function (I’m right-handed. Of course). After the first few weeks of that, I had to go on medical leave from work, and by the time I was ready to TRY going back (although terrified that I wouldn’t be able to handle it physically or emotionally) it was April 2020, and Covid meant that I didn’t have a job to go back to.
So, for most of the year I haven’t been working or doing any of my hobbies (because they all require my right hand to do things that it hasn’t been capable of doing) and I’ve been bored, but I still also haven’t been writing. Because just existing is hard, and the fact that I feel useless and like I’ve failed at absolutely everything is not helping me to combat depression.
But I’ve made some changes to the supplements I take, and I’ve started doing mindfulness on a daily basis, and I’m trying to find a therapist, and I’m trying to let myself feel things, and think things through, and it seemed like writing might help.
I’m not sure yet if it will. depression says it won’t.
But I’m writing this anyway; because people tell me that depression lies, and I know that the things other people’s depression says to them are untrue, which means there might be an outside possibility that the depression controlling My Brain is also providing an inaccurate assessment of reality. Maybe.
So here I sit at the end of one of the worst years I’ve ever had (in terms of career, hobbies, or doing absolutely anything worthwhile), and as My Body slowly recovers and I regain some function in my right arm, somehow My Brain has finally agreed to help me fight against depression instead of always taking its side.
Either that, or it’s about to shoot me in the back.
Wish me luck.