on depression & sxsw

Which is not a combination I intended to post on, but I feel compelled by Andrea’s entry on the topic.

At one point in a conversation last week somebody commented on my alleged courage (or similar adjective) in writing about my depression. I don’t remember what I said exactly, but it felt like just shrugging, no big deal & all that.

Of course it’s not, really. In thinking about it later, I realized that Liz Lawley (or at least eh memory of that particular entry) was a big example for me in choosing to write about depression last spring, when I was really at the end of my rope. Dorothea’s writing about her grad school experiences had a similar impact. (Dorothea’s actual presence, over the wires, has a good influence on me as well.)
Being able to look one’s soul in the eyes (?!) has helped me immensely, facing my depression, the dysthymia that has haunted most of my life, and being able to know that ungrounded thought for what it is. I’m at a different place with myself, a year on from the big collapse. A place where I’m even okay, I think, with my crazy brain. I almost had a crashout emotionally at SXSW, and I recognized it in myself, and went away to recouperate. I may have missed some partying, but it’s partying I wouldn’t have enjoyed in that state anyway.

I also got to relearn the lesson that exercise & sleep are the two most critical factors in mood management for me.

I still get that creepy-crawly feeling talking about the depression, especially with someone I haven’t said anything to before. But y’all, out here on the internets? Saying these things to you has been one of the best things for me in the last year.

So…go check out Andrea’s project, Jangly Ganglia, and thank you.

Update: the book waiting for me at the library this afternoon? Against Depression.

One Reply to “on depression & sxsw”

Comments are closed.