Medicine has advanced exponentially through the years and modern science has accepted that depression is a medical condition. Recent articles have spoken of a possible test to determine a diagnosis of depression, but until that time, sometimes it feels like a roll of the dice by a physician. Too often people suffer in silence, myself being one of those unfortunates that just never seemed to be happy.
Over the years I’ve been on so many different anti-depressants I can’t even remember all of their names. All had side effects, some minor and others major, but no medicine can come without some potential pitfalls. Mix in a pinch of alcoholism and you have a recipe for one heck of a disaster. Obviously my medication wouldn’t work while I was drinking as alcohol is a major depressive. But for the majority of the time I was on the pills my drinking was fairly limited or moderate. I’ve also found the reasons they have so many different medications and dosages is due to the biochemistry of the human brain. What may work for one may not work for another.
The brain is a magnificent and wonderful organ that can reign havoc on a person and manifest those symptoms both physically and mentally. Hopelessness, lethargy, a loss in interests, high blood pressure, upset stomach, and so on and so on. Probably the most unfortunate part about depression is the fact that it’s not something like diabetes or hyperthyroidism that can be diagnosed with some test.
When you’re in recovery and you hang around the program long enough you unfortunately see people that take their own lives, some sober, some not, and sometimes people that aren’t even drunkards. One of the best lines I’ve ever heard is that suicide is a “permanent solution to a temporary problem.” That pretty much sums it up right there. In the depths of my own personal prison I thought about it often when I was drinking and sometimes even after I sobered up for a while.
Today I take my medication like I’m supposed to, but if I had my way I’d be totally drug free. Nobody wants to look at the future and think they’re gonna have to take some stupid pill the rest of their life, just like some days I don’t like the fact I can’t have another drink for the rest of my life. That’s a subject for another story. So am I some sort of freak or outcast of society? Nope, I’m just a sick person trying to get well.
HOPE, one of those great four letter words. To steal one of my famous quotes ever, “Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.” The point is that there is hope, you don’t have to suffer in silence like so many of us do. The hardest part about getting help is slowly dying while not just asking for that relief. So if I could share one piece of advice with anybody in the midst of depression or if you’re questioning it, get help. Get help from a friend, from a parent, from a teacher, from a hospital, from a stranger if you have to. Become a statistic, not of mental illness, but of one of the several billion people on this planet running around acting goofy.