Dear Diary: Motherhood & Depression

A few years back I wrote about how I suffer from depression/anxiety. I seemed to have it under wrap but I have to admit the last year has been really rough. Some that do not suffer from depression may think that depression is for weirdos? At least that is my fear as a person who suffers from it. Those that do have it will fully understand what it’s like to have this stigma behind the scary “D” word. It is the most annoying, nagging thing in my life preventing me from reaching the light at the end of the tunnel.

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Big deal, take a chill pill…you will be fine! Wrong!

I have days where I am rocking the world! Like I am invisible walking on a cloud and no one can get me down from my happy high. Some days it physically HURTS to get out of bed and I WISH I were invincible! Can you imagine feeling like you are sleep-deprived 24/7? No energy, no feeling of achieving anything. That is how I often feel each day. I have to say if I didn’t have kids, I wonder what would have happened to me? In many ways having them early on (before turning 30) was probably a life savior for me. They give me that kick in the butt and drive to get moving each day if I like it or not. I don’t have a choice do I?!30864aff-2488-44b1-b140-120c19bbac27

If I could have it my way, staying in bed all day in PJ’s would be the best medicine. But I know it wouldn’t help me to kick this nasty bout of depression. Getting out of bed each day feels like an accomplishment. Taking a shower is often the one thing that really helps me to feel “alive”.

I have come to a point in my life where I could not care less if people want to criticize me for being depressed. It IS an illness and can happen to ANYONE, from ANY walk of life. I can’t say for sure how I got it or when it started. I do know it has been with me for %75 of my life. Quite possibly triggered at a young age when I was bullied in elementary school.

I just wanted to get my illness of my chest once and for all. I often struggle to get out of bed, struggle to get out of the house, struggle to be that “perfect mother”, struggle to meet up with friends. I get excited about the idea of meeting up with old friends, then when the day comes, something sets off a trigger in me. Suddenly I feel crippled. I start to feel sick and just can’t phantom the idea of leaving the house. I hate when it happens and I feel even more awful how it must makes my friends feel. The most wonderful thing for me are my true best friends that know about my sickness. Thankfully they do not get upset which makes me love them even more.

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I have contemplated of just putting an end to my blog. Sometimes the competition is a bit overwhelming + coming up with fresh content. I then often think to myself that my work will never be at par to those “famous” bloggers out there on the world wide web. Here comes the “perfectionist” in me making a grand entrance! But you know what… this blog is actually part of my medicine and guide to get moving with my life. It forces me to get dressed up and go out and meet with people. My kids get to partake in wonderful outings and I wonder…if I didn’t have my blog (which is also an open pen journal to the world) would we be stuck at home more than usual when I get into my ruts? The great thing about getting special invites to an event is that I don’t give myself a choice to cancel.

So I guess what I wanted to say today, is that I am very grateful for my children & blog that are keeping me alive & for my friends and Mom that understand my illness. I wish depression was not such a frowned upon “thing” and that people could talk about it more openly and freely [insert me]. I hope this post will touch someone’s life and make them feel like they are not alone. If you ever want to reach out to me as an expat living in a foreign country and feeling isolated then just holler at me! We don’t have to meet in person (I know far too well that fear that comes across us) just pop me an email and I will be glad to write you back.

 For 2016 I can only dream of a year without depression. I want to get rid of it like you wouldn’t believe. I keep meaning to sign up for Yoga and meditation as they say this is the best form of medication. Do any of you do Yoga ? Where do you go? Let’s break the stigma around depression this year. Be it postpartum , bipolar, situational, mild, moderate or what have you!

My Top 10 List of Things That Help My Depression:

  1. Going for a bike ride (provided it is not the middle of the summer)
  2. Gardening
  3. Going for a walk with my dog Chico
  4. Taking a shower
  5. Going for a drive and exploring unknown parts of the UAE with my family in tow
  6. Taking the kids for a sneaky treat (ice cream)
  7. Driving down to the beach and just sitting in front of the beautiful ocean
  8. Suntanning
  9. Having a neighbor over for a coffee or drink and a good gab
  10. A fun night out with my best friend

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