Fighting Depression

I’ve really struggled the last few months. It’s easy to look for external triggers for the struggle.

Spring blossomed and things that fly…well they started flying again, triggering Hope’s bug phobia. The schedule was crazy. We initiated a medication change for her that we were getting used to. Her anxiety was running high because of a general fear about high school. We’ve been dealing with a lengthy resolution to a criminal case in which Hope was a victim. Work has been insane, and I’m being heavily pursued for a new gig in another state. Yappy had puppy school every week at 8pm.

All the external stuff was really, really extra, and I spent a lot of time focused on it all because it all demanded my attention.

Oh and then I was just generally upset by the constant issues and images of Black folk trying to live and being impeded from doing so.

On a Monday a few weeks ago, I found myself crying and I couldn’t stop. I mean I just could not stop crying.

I was sad.

I was in a state of despair.

I wanted to just lay in the bed; getting up felt like it took all of the energy I had.

I found joy in nothing.

I was always irritable and snappy, and Hope was increasingly reacting to my bad moods which just made our relationship that much more strained.

I felt like a dark cloud was just hanging over me.

I finally made an appointment with my internist, who sat back in his chair and let me cry and sob for 15 minutes. Then, he handed me his handkerchief and started talking about the need for medication to help me get myself together.

I was anxious and depressed—not just sad, but clinically sad. Somewhere along the way I fell off a cliff and was just free falling, and I didn’t realize it.

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Depression is an effed up thing. I have struggled with it off and on for years. Usually I can see it coming, this time I didn’t. It makes me sad because it’s another sign that I haven’t done my best at self-care, but more concerning is that my depression had a chilling effect on Hope. I regret that. Not in a way that I’m beating myself up over, but I still regret it because it’s another little thing I need to bounce back from.

Resiliency is still an issue for me.

Parenting is a tough business. Parenting a child who has experienced trauma is…especially tough. Sometimes it feels like you’re just looking for puzzle pieces in the dark. You need the pieces to help put the kid back together, but you’re looking for them with no flashlight.

It’s kind of easy for the dark to consume you when you don’t even have a flashlight.

Beating back the darkness is actually the most important thing right now; actually it is more important than getting the parenting thing just right. Fighting the darkness is essential to both my and Hope’s survival.

It’s been a few weeks since I hit that low spot. I’m feeling much better now. I’m on the mend, on the upswing, if you will. Pharmaceutical help is a beautiful thing. It’s unfortunate that dealing with mental and emotional issues is a taboo thing in communities of color. If you need help, get it. I could sit around and do that “strong Black woman” thing, but Hope and I would both continue to suffer. I think getting help is a better demonstration of strength.

So that’s what’s up. I tripped and fell into a bit of a hole. I am fighting depression. But I’m climbing out and stepping back into the sunlight. And it feels good.

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About AdoptiveBlackMom

I'm a single Black professional woman living in the DC area. I adopted tween a few years ago, and this blog chronicles our journey. Feel free to contact me at adoptiveblackmom@gmail.com, on Facebook at Adoptive Black Mom, and on Twitter @adoptiveblkmom. ©www.AdoptiveBlackMom.com, 2013-2017. All rights reserved. (Don't copy my ish without credit!) View all posts by AdoptiveBlackMom

13 responses to “Fighting Depression

  • Mary Ann Barton

    I’ll be sending warm thoughts your way. Glad the meds help. I remember my depression as a single mom. Thanks for entrusting your readers with your story.

  • Belladonna Took

    Ah, honey … I’m so sorry. Sending a hug. I’ve fought depression on and off my whole life – since my teens – so I sort of get how you’ve been feeling. It’s a bugger! Well done you for recognizing that you needed help and going out and getting it. And as for Hope … you know, we all want to be amazingly good and powerful Mom-People, but it doesn’t necessarily damage our kids to see those times of weakness – because when you show them how to deal with it effectively, that’s an important lesson. I’m guessing it’s a lesson Hope’s previous life hasn’t taught her.

    • AdoptiveBlackMom

      It’s sad how many people fight with and through depression, and do it silently. I’m trying to just take the do my best and forget the rest approach. Thanks for the kind words and encouragement.

  • AdoptiveNYMomma

    I am so glad you recognized it and took action. I am glad things are looking up with a bit of help from Chemistry. You are an amazing woman it happens and not amount of challenges will change that. I have struggled with depression my whole adult life and you can get through it. Be the strong woman you are and take care of yourself because you are worth it.

  • My Perfect Breakdown

    I’m glad you recognized that you needed some help and you took the steps to get the help you needed. I think asking for help can be one of the hardest things to do and yet also one of the most rewarding because with a little help things often seem a lot better. Love to you my friend.

  • NickyB.

    Praying that things get better for you.

  • betternotbroken

    I am sorry you fell into the hole so many of us know so well, I wonder sometimes whether it is hard times or depression. I mean how can you be aware of what is going on and be all gleeful, sometimes we endure painful rough times. I hope you take as good of care of yourself as you do Hope, I don’t know about the strong Black woman thing, but the strong woman thing I know gets old and I often wonder the point of putting up the front for others. Enjoy the sunlight and congratulations on finding the strength to climb out to see and appreciate it.

  • momto3sugars

    Amen! Whatever it takes, do it! You are showing your daughter that taking care of herself is important as you show her that you take time to take care of yourself too! I’m proud of you for doing what it takes! You’re a strong mama and person!

  • TheChroniclesofaNonBellyMama

    Friend, the best example you can give home, is that when you need help, ask for it! It was a lesson that my parents never taught me. Their help was a bottle with a whole in the bottom, and lots of my siblings have taken that route. There is nothing wrong with acknowledging that something is wrong, and then doing what you have to do to get better. if you had cancer, would you not ask your dr for chemo and radiation?! It’s the same thing! Glad to hear that things are on the upswing, and that slowly but surely, you have been feeling better! Sending love and light and hugs your way…

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