Cartoonist Allie Brosh wrote an epic post on her blog Hyperbole and a Half about her struggle with depression. I think she’s done a wonderful job of illustrating the disease not only to people who have never suffered from it, but to the people who live with it every day.
The first few paragraphs capture the experience of the disease perfectly.
I remember being endlessly entertained by the adventures of my toys. Some days they died repeated, violent deaths, other days they traveled to space or discussed my swim lessons and how I absolutely should be allowed in the deep end of the pool, especially since I was such a talented doggy-paddler…
But as I grew older, it became harder and harder to access that expansive imaginary space that made my toys fun. I remember looking at them and feeling sort of frustrated and confused that things weren’t the same.
I played out all the same story lines that had been fun before, but the meaning had disappeared… Depression feels almost exactly like that, except about everything.
The worst aspect of depression for me was loosing my emotional connection to the world. The meaning drained out all my experiences and memories. And explaining this to anyone, even myself, was nearly impossible. I did not know how to comprehend, let alone explain, what was happening to me.
I Think Ms. Brosh has performed a wonderful service by articulating these things. Cheers to her.