Monday, August 4, 2014

Depression Is the Pits

I like to think that I'm a fairly smart person, but there are other times when I'm stubbornly stupid, and that frustrates me.  I guess I'm a bit of a conundrum.

I've been suffering from depression for much of the past decade, since my wonderful wife, Teresa, passed away suddenly from a major heart attack.  Her untimely death had a dramatic effect on my life and that of my daughter, who was only five months old at the time.  Death never picks a good time to strike, and to continue a full-time career and be a full-time single parent of a baby was not something I could do on my own.  I was and am so fortunate to have my parents and my in-laws near enough to help me, and they did.  Between them and my belief that God would help carry us through (He did), we were able to survive and thrive.  Despite it all, I still had my difficulties with depression.  I was completely overwhelmed and struggled in many ways.

There were days when I felt completely alone.  Teresa and I had a wonderful marriage, and we enjoyed being husband and wife.  We understood how to make a marriage work, and we literally never had a major disagreement.  We were a great team.  I loved her so much.  Without her, I honestly didn't know how I was going to get by.  That feeling of being overwhelmed was so great, that it took me into a deep depression.  It challenged my faith, and I struggled in my job and day to day responsibilities.  I had a few health issues that overwhelmed me at the time, and I finally reached the point that I needed to find help.  Fortunately, my pastor and I had a discussion that righted my outlook, at least temporarily, and I was able to get through the first couple of years of being a widower.  My doctor prescribed meds that were able to help me with my depression, as well, and I spent the next several years bouncing up and down between periods of feeling good, and feeling depressed.

You might think that taking meds that help you live your life in a less complicated way would be a priority.  But, as I said at the beginning of this post, I can be a bit stubborn and stupid, and I occasionally forget to get my meds refilled.  When I run out, I get overconfident in my ability to get by without them, and that's what drops me and stops me in my tracks.  And that's where I am now.  I thought I was doing fairly well, and I was looking forward to work this week (which is unusual on many Sunday evenings).  Three hours into my workday, though, and I hit bottom again.

I'm not sure what the root of my issues are right now.  However, my daughter is with my in-laws for the week, and I typically get depressed when I'm by myself.  I had many plans for this week, and after this morning, I decided that I was not motivated enough to even want to do them.  The men's ministry at my church had scheduled a barbecue for this evening, and I felt like I really ought to be there.  Better together, and all that.  But I had zero motivation to go, and I came home and crashed and did nothing.  I got lost in a movie, took a nap, and spent the evening feeling sorry for myself.  Depression at its finest.  Or worst.  The Hoco Bloggers have an event scheduled for Wednesday night, and I thought it might be fun to participate.  But, just like with the men's ministry barbecue, I have no desire to go.  This is what depression does to me.  It's such an awful thing.

The answer, of course, is that I need to get back on my meds.  I'll be picking them up tomorrow, but it will take a few days for them to take effect.  Until then, I ask for your prayers, that God will pull me through this, that I'll be able to ride it out and start feeling better, and that, long-term, I might find the help I need to start feeling alive again.

In the meantime, have a great evening, everyone.


  1. Hi Eric - I admire your willingness to put your experience out there. Maybe I'll see you tonight at Jailbreak.

    1. Thank you, Kirsten! I appreciate the kind comment. As you probably know, I didn't make to Jailbreak tonight, but I promise to be at a future Hoco Bloggers event.