Running Scared

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I don’t understand my depression.

Often I can’t identify when I’m depressed or not.  Sometimes I fall into the black hole without a moment’s notice, other times it drags on for months, subtly, until I wind up at the bottom, not even interested in climbing back out.

Is my lack of energy caused by my depression?  Is my weight gain, my lack of a desire to exercise, my overeating – are these caused by my depression, or am I just simply fat, lazy, and weak?  I call myself these things because that’s what I feel inside.  But maybe that is the depression talking?

Alright, I’m done whining.  Here’s a list to help me sort it all out.  Maybe it can help you, too:

Signs and symptoms of depression include:
  • Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. A bleak outlook—nothing will ever get better and there’s nothing you can do to improve your situation
  • Loss of interest in daily activities. No interest in former hobbies, pastimes, social activities, or sex. You’ve lost your ability to feel joy and pleasure.
  • Appetite or weight changes. Significant weight loss or weight gain—a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month.
  • Sleep changes. Either insomnia, especially waking in the early hours of the morning, or oversleeping (also known as hypersomnia).
  • Anger or irritability. Feeling agitated, restless, or even violent. Your tolerance level is low, your temper short, and everything and everyone gets on your nerves.
  • Loss of energy. Feeling fatigued, sluggish, and physically drained. Your whole body may feel heavy, and even small tasks are exhausting or take longer to complete.
  • Self-loathing. Strong feelings of worthlessness or guilt. You harshly criticize yourself for perceived faults and mistakes.
  • Reckless behavior. You engage in escapist behavior such as substance abuse, compulsive gambling, reckless driving, or dangerous sports.
  • Concentration problems. Trouble focusing, making decisions, or remembering things.
  • Unexplained aches and pains. An increase in physical complaints such as headaches, back pain, aching muscles, and stomach pain.

(P.s. I hate these lists.)

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