Something that I’ve learnt from my many years of struggling with depression is that it’s never really gone. Even at times when I feel good and healthy, I’m still always at risk of relapse. So far, I’ve experienced relapses every couple of years and one of the many reasons that happened is that I didn’t take my depression seriously enough. No one likes being mentally ill, so once depression doesn’t feel too present, I tend to ignore it. I quickly put myself under a lot of pressure, because everyone else does too, and since my depression isn’t acting up in that particular moment, I don’t feel like I have an excuse to take things easy. I feel like a liar and very disrespectful of other people’s hard work, so I push myself all the time to keep up with everyone. I don’t want to cause trouble because of something no one can see.
While every single time seems still manageable to me, those situations keep stacking, until I can’t deal with the amount of stress anymore. Then I fall apart.
This is a reminder to me and everyone else who’s in a similar situation: by accepting your depression and keeping it in mind, you’ll be able to live a healthier life in the long run. It’s difficult to miss out on certain things or to say “no” to friends because of something that isn’t an immediate problem. But every time you decide to take care of your needs, you will keep depression away a bit longer.