Breaking up from work today for a few days holiday made me realise how precious time is. These past few years most of my holidays have unfortunately been used to attend medical/hospital appointments, so this week I am grateful to be able to have a total of four days to hopefully do as I please.
I am one of the more luckier ones this Christmas!! Over this past year I have made a fair bit of progress in my recovery from depression, and as a result of this I am in a position to try to make Christmas mean something this year. Saturday afternoon I will meet my oldest and dearest friend for a coffee and chat and exchange cards. Christmas day will be a very simple family day for Christmas lunch, and then Monday and Tuesday I will be glad to just give myself some ‘me time’ to relax and perhaps do some scrapbooking ( my latest passion in life) and watch a little TV, catch up on some much-needed rest, and chat to a couple of my friends on fb. That is my idea of an ideal Christmas.
However, for many who suffer depression and especially those who don’t have any family it can be the worst time of the year for them. Speaking from personal experience these last two Christmas holidays, they were a mental and physical effort to get through……more so than any other time of the year. Depression is not one of those things that has an on/off button, and you can just switch it off and become happy for other people’s sakes during this holiday period. If only it was that easy. For many sufferers the stress is just too unbearable.
Earlier this week I had a severe panick attack, I don’t get them very often, but when I do and during the period of time they last it can be very debilitating. This one was so severe it left me feeling very drained physically and emotionally all week, and even today I do still a little deflated and tired. So this break has come at the right time for me and I am going to use it to relax ………and do some thinking about my immediate future.
A year ago, every night I went to bed and didn’t ever wake up again, to not have to face anyone or any situation ever again. But my recovery these past few months have given me some hope for the future. As I look back over this year I can see how far I have come, this has been due to several factors. I have a fantastic GP who will talk with me rather than at me…….but more importantly she listens to what I have to say. I have met some wonderful new friends on fb…some of whom share my understanding of this illness. I have had a few months of reasonably good physical health. Last month I was able to celebrate my Fathers 80th birthday with him. I was very fortunate to be introduced to Caroline and be inspired by her to learn a new interest and become close friends into the bargain. I have been given a glimmer of hope over a long-term physical health problem…….although this means I will have to spend a week in hospital next March.
But the point I am making is that there is hope after depression. One can come back from the brink, finding the right people and the right help and support is what makes all the difference. I was surprised to read the other night on my blog statistics that I have in the space of just over 6 weeks a total of 139 people who read/follow my blog…that actually surprised me, as I never thought for one moment I would have so many people interested in it. Whilst I know there are a few of my readers who are themselves sufferers of depression, it made me realise also that are a large number who are not sufferers.
So for those of you none sufferers of depression, in the true spirit of Christmas, this year it would be great if you know anyone on their own, who suffers from this life destroying illness, to just take an hour or so of your time over the next few days to go and sit with them, share a cup of tea and mince-pie with them, have a little chat and give them enough reason to make them feel worthy……because believe me when I say each and every person who suffers from this illness is worthy. They too deserve to have a little happiness at this time of the year. Christmas time is about hope, and my fellow sufferers deserve hope.
Here’s hoping all my friends and readers do have a good Christmas, and a Happy, healthy new year.