Jana Says

Living life from cover to cover

Depression. It lies.

I had planned a nice little post all about our Memorial Day weekend. How my daughter drove a tractor, how I drank banana beer bread (at Nadine’s suggestion), how I finished a book (Cutting Teeth by Julia Fierro)in one day, and how all kinds of other fun and relaxing things happened. 

A phone call last night changed all of that. 

Last night, while getting our daughter ready for bed, my husband received a phone call that one of our friends from college committed suicide over the weekend. I won’t even pretend I can understand what was going through the friend’s head, or what the circumstances were that led to that choice. But it came as a shock, even though we hadn’t seen him in a few years, and at our age (36/37), you don’t expect your friends to die, and even less so by taking their own life. It’s a horrible tragedy and I hope that his family and friends can find some peace at some point as they work through all of this. 

And this is exactly why depression is a fucking motherfucker.

Not only that, it’s a lying asshole. It tells you all kinds of untruths like you’re invaluable or you’re worthless or your family and friends would be better off without you or you don’t deserve the life you want. And when you’re down the rabbit hole of depression, you believe all of that. It becomes such a huge part of who you are, and what you believe about yourself at your core, it’s impossible to ignore. So you start withdrawing.

You stop engaging in activities that make you feel good because not only can you not bring yourself to enjoy them, you don’t think you deserve to enjoy them. You cut off contact with friends because you’re confident they don’t really like you anyway. You stop showering and eating and getting dressed and doing all of that because honestly, what’s the point, right? Depression’s lies make you a shell of who you once were and while in the beginning you might rally against it, it’s really a Sisyphean task. As soon as you feel good, it knocks you back down again. 

So you just give in. Because it becomes too much to fight.

At least that’s how it was for me. 

While I never reached the point that our college friend did, or our next door neighbor, or the thousands of others who commit suicide each year, I just wanted to be invisible. I wanted to exist only within the walls of my house. I didn’t want to go to work or socialize or walk my dogs or even leave my couch. I wanted no contact with the outside world because I didn’t feel like I had much to offer anyone. It put a strain on all my relationships and it made me a pretty shitty mother, too. I had surrendered to the depression and let it control my life.

For a long, long time. 

I was lucky, though. I never reached the level of despair where I thought death was the only way out. It breaks my heart that so many people can’t come to that conclusion. That they don’t see anything as getting better. Ever. That there is nothing left to live for. Not a song, not a picture, not a sunset, not a person, not an anything. They truly believe that everything is better if they simply cease to exist. 

And that is the worst lie depression can ever make you believe. Because it is unequivocally false.

If you are feeling like you literally cannot live anymore, please, PLEASE tell someone. Doesn’t have to be family or a close friend. Tell a random person on the internet. Text a random number. But just tell someone. Because, despite what lies the depression is telling you right now, your life is important. You are a good person. You have gifts to share. You deserve to be happy. You will find the place where you belong, with people who love you for who you are. I’d even be willing to bet that there are people right now who love you just as you are. You will survive whatever it is you’re going through and you’ll come out even stronger. 

Because.

Depression lies.

You are worth life.

18 Comments

  1. kathy@vodka and soda

    oh, i am so sorry to hear about your friend.

    this post gave me shivers because it’s 100% true. i suffered from severe PPD that turned into clinical depression that completely took over for nearly 3 years after my daughter was born. it nearly ruined my marriage, my bond with my child, my life and if it weren’t for the intervention my family did, i dont know where i would be because no joke, i was probably a few months away from suicide since i thought about it every single day. my heart goes out to his family and those who were close to him/knew him.

    xoxoxxo
    kathy@vodka and soda recently posted…not your typical bloggerMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      It’s a good thing your family intervened because you’re awesome. So many would just turn a blind eye because depression, especially PPD, is not something people talk about. Thanks for sharing your story.

      Reply
  2. Nadine

    I am sorry to hear about your friend. Depression and suicide are really hard topics to talk about. You never know who may read this and it may help them, so thank you for sharing! I wrote about my friend I lost to suicide before. It felt therapeutic to talk about.

    On a much lighter note, did you enjoy the banana beer?
    Nadine recently posted…Weekend Shenanigans – The One With the Extra DayMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      The banana beer was delicious! I’m glad I still have more in my fridge 🙂

      They are hard topics to talk about but it’s so important that we do. So I am glad you wrote about your friend.

      Reply
  3. Kelli

    I’m sorry about your friend, depression is such a bitch. My cousin committed suicide a few years ago and the 16 year old me who use to hang out with her every summer at the lake still doesn’t get how that could happen. 37 year old me gets it but wishes desperately she had reached out for help or to talk, I was always here.

    PS I love weekends where I can finish a book in a day! I didn’t get a whole book finished this weekend but I did finish Gone Girl and got half way through The Last Original Wife so I’d say it wasn’t a bad weekend bookwise here. 🙂
    Kelli recently posted…Sunrise at The BeachMy Profile

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    1. Jana (Post author)

      Wasn’t Gone Girl so ridiculously good? I can’t wait to see the movie because apparently there is a different ending.

      I’m sorry to hear about your cousin. Suicide is such a hard thing to comprehend.

      Reply
  4. Kerry

    I am sorry for your loss. It is so sad that they don’t think that they are loved or will be missed. Everyone is important. Hopefully this will be seen by someone who will read it and get hope that there is help and they will be missed. Suicide is never the answer even if the lies tell them so.
    Kerry recently posted…Things That Make Me HappyMy Profile

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    1. Jana (Post author)

      I hope someone does read this and realizes that there is hope, even if it doesn’t seem like it. That whole “it gets better” campaign isn’t just a load of crap.

      Reply
  5. SMD @ Life According to Steph

    This is really well written and really true to the core.

    My grandfather killed himself because of his depression. It’s terrible. So terrible that he’d think that was his best option, and just terrible what it does to the people left behind.

    I’m so sorry for your loss.
    SMD @ Life According to Steph recently posted…TWTW – Memorial Day Weekend consisted of…My Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      I did not know that about your grandfather. I’m so sorry to hear that.

      The aftermath is the worst part, because everyone just wants to know why. But depression isn’t logical or rational and there is never a good enough answer.

      Reply
  6. Jenniemarie @ Another Housewife

    Oh Jana, I am so sorry to hear about your friend.

    Thanks you for being willing to speak the truth on this subject. You have impacted my life in more ways than I can ever express and have given me the courage to write about my own struggles without shame.

    Feeling alone is the strongest foothold on anyone and it is the biggest lie we are led to believe.
    Jenniemarie @ Another Housewife recently posted…Ten Summer Break ActivitiesMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      People like us need to talk about it. To get rid of the stigma, to encourage people to get help, and to make them realize they are not alone. It breaks my heart that people reach such a level of despair they can’t see any light.

      Reply
  7. Kara

    I’m so so sorry for your family’s loss. It’s tragic when anyone commits suicide, but especially someone in (what should be) the prime of his life.

    Many hugs and warm thoughts your way.
    Kara recently posted…Homemade Barbecue SauceMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      Agreed, and I feel that way when teenagers do it, too.

      Reply
  8. Sarah @ Beauty School Dropout

    It makes me so, so sad to think that anyone gets to the point where they think ending their life will make everyone else’s life better. I hope your friend’s family and friends (including you!) are able to remember the good times with him and give each other strength.
    Sarah @ Beauty School Dropout recently posted…A girly reading monthMy Profile

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  9. Amanda

    I’m so so sorry to hear about your friend. 🙁 When I was at the hospital and would see people coming in because they wanted to commit suicide, it always broke my heart. Kids as young as 7… adults as old as their 60s. I don’t think anyone is ever really “safe” from it and I wish that there wasn’t such a taboo on feeling depressed – then maybe more people wouldn’t be so scared to ask for help! :/

    Reply
    1. Jana (Post author)

      OMG, 7?! That is my daughter’s age and I just cannot even.

      Part of why I write and talk about it is to relieve some of the stigma. I may have a small audience but it’s still a place to talk. And hopefully more small voices will start talking and create one big loud chorus and then those at their worst will feel okay to get help.

      Reply
  10. Linda Sheridan

    Love and lights streaming to you always. My life was touched by a brutal suicide when I was 23. My ex-father-in-law, a wonderful, but tormented man. It really doesn’t go away. I had a psychic reading in November 2006 as a treat to myself. I always knew he would come thru and he did. Details were amazing, spot on. Saw things that happened after his passing, including the birth of my son, his grandson. He is well and sent tons of love. My kids all heard the tape and helped them empathize what my ex-husband went through.It would not help him to hear the tape, though-too much hurt. I always thought my son was a gift to his father after enduring such grief. God heal and bless and help all those suffering.
    Love SMD’s momma

    Reply

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