People often refer to depression as being like a black dog. For me it always something I compare more to being trapped in fog.The fog descends gradually and without warning. It is all consuming, this need to get out of the fog. I feel lost, helpless and utterly alone.
I can hear voices in the fog, but they are distant and they often don’t make sense. I cannot see clearly because the fog clouds my vision, so I don’t take the words of loved ones at face value. I think they might have some other weird agenda and that makes me anxious about trusting them.
Being in the fog means that things that I would normal deal with rationally, I can’t because my senses are dulled.
So when my ex husband texts me out of the blue with strange demands, I don’t spot what I would normally spot. That this is him drunk, trying to goad me into a response so that he can offload his anger and upset on me. The fog gets in the way, so I don’t ignore it the way I should. The resulting stress and upset that occurs is hard to deal with, harder than normal, because of course half my mind is constantly trying to find a pathway out of the fog.
I try herbal sleeping pills to relax me, I throw myself into my work, because the fog is thinner there. I’ve bought a vitamin D mouth spray, my boyfriend has bought me a SAD lamp, I try to get outdoors each day.
The last one is particularly hard. I love being outdoors, but the effort involved in moving around and doing things while surrounded by fog is horrific. Plus, there are people out there. People I would normally be happy and confident to interact with, but the fog brings paranoia, because as I said earlier, I can’t see properly, I don;t trust my judgement.
Food doesn’t taste as good. I lose my appetite. I force myself to eat three meals a day because logically I know I have to, but it sticks in my throat and I can’t even bring myself to eat chocolate. I burst into tears randomly, because every day is just so fucking hard.
My children don’t see me upset, but I’m well aware that my patience is stretched. It’s a Herculean effort to try to remain outwardly normal while inside my mind is in free-fall, encased in thick, grey fog.
I know, rationally, that the fog will lift again, but the worry is when? How long do I drag myself through each day, mask in place so that people don’t see how much I’m struggling?