26 October 2006

Defining depression

If you didn't read my last entry, I think you should. I'm fine, don't stress out.

I read this in Dooce's blog today. Well I got the link there. And lest anyone think I'm ripping her off, I recognised entirely different paragraphs of writer Chris Rose's article on sinking into depression, and suffering through it. I want to paste some for you, but I think you should read the whole article, whether you have depression issues, or you know someone who does.

I had never been so scared in my life.

Three friends of mine have, in fact, killed themselves in the past year and I have wondered what that was like. I rejected it. But, for the first time, I understood why they did it.

Hopeless, helpless and unable to function. A mind shutting down and taking the body with it. A pain not physical but not of my comprehension and always there, a buzzing fluorescent light that you can't turn off.

So none of this made sense. My personality has always been marked by insouciance and laughter, the seeking of adventure and new experiences. I am the class clown, the life of the party, the bon vivant.

I particularly identify with this paragraph:

...the writer William Styron recounted his own descent into and recovery from depression, and one of the biggest obstacles, he said, was the term itself, what he calls "a true wimp of a word."

"As one who has suffered from the malady in extremis yet returned to tell the tale, I would lobby for a truly arresting designation. 'Brainstorm,' for instance, has unfortunately been preempted to describe, somewhat jocularly, intellectual inspiration. But something along these lines is needed. Told that someone's mood disorder has evolved into a storm -- a veritable howling tempest in the brain, which is indeed what a clinical depression resembles like nothing else -- even the uninformed layman might display sympathy rather than the standard reaction that 'depression' evokes, something akin to 'So what?' or 'You'll pull out of it' or 'We all have bad days.' "

I think that's the best written description I've ever seen for depression.

Read the article if you have some time.


SkippyMom said...

I read Dooce's piece and I understand where you are coming from.

Your last "classic piece" after reading it, does not begin to describe anything - it is incomplete, as taken out of context - did I miss the link for the whole thing? I would like to read it in its' entirety...can you provide it.

I hope you are okay.

Tippy said...

Actually, I meant to underline or otherwise highlight this particular aside:

a veritable howling tempest in the brain, which is indeed what a clinical depression resembles like nothing else

If you click "Chris Rose's article" you can view the whole thing.

Thank you.

gizmorox said...

I love you babydoll and if I could kiss it all away I would. I hope the new drugs work better.