Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Letting out the silent killer

me in 1999
I'm listening to Muse with the big headphones because I took my ipod to work so that I could listen to music during my lunch break, because I needed to drown the brain. I chose a playlist, and hit shuffle. The last song was Muse's Follow Me from their 2nd Law album. And then hit replay. There is nothing special about that song... I think*. But then tonight after work, I wanted, or more to the point, needed to listen to music. So again, I chose Muse.

I needed to shut my brain up for many reasons. Most recently due to the death of Robin Williams. Some famous deaths aren't all that shocking (Heath Ledger, Kurt Cobain) or unexpected (Amy Winehouse). But his was. It's just sad. I haven't been on Twitter since I heard because I just don't want to see it all. His death, of course, brings up the discussion of depression and how debilitating of a disease it can be. I've written about my depression a bit here on the blog, but I've never truly discussed it at any great length. Maybe I should.

Depression runs in my family, as I'm sure in most. Both of my parents suffer varying degrees. One uses medication. But both of them and myself included, don't suffer from say... "deep depression" or get to the point where the thought of suicide would help. I have fallen pretty deep before, but I can only stay holed up for so long before I force myself out. I have always pulled myself out of a "funk" sometimes it's as "easy" as going outside and soaking up the sun. (easy is in quotes because it is NOT easy.)

I've found that since I have started running, more than two years ago now, I don't get into those deep, long bouts as much or for as long anymore. I mentioned to a friend just this past week, that I now use running as an escape. I run so that I don't have to think about how crappy life is that day, or week, or what-have-you for 30-40 minutes. I run to quiet the brain. And by running I get outside into the sun for at least 30 minutes a day, and exercise also gets the metabolism going and endorphins flowing which is critical for depression sufferers.

So thank you running. With out it, I'm not sure how well off mentally I would be right now. Everyone suffers things silently. I have quite a list going right now in my life, much of which I don't share publicly, (as in this blog) but I think, no, I know for a fact that I am handling it better than I would if I wasn't running my ass off 4-5 days a week.

Of course there are days I don't want to get out there. Almost all the time. But I put the "outfit" on and lace the shoes, and get out the door. Once I'm out the door, it's easy. It's getting out the door that is difficult. I always know how to break out of, or more like climb out of a bout of depression, it's the actual doing of it that is difficult. So it is always very hard to hear when someone doesn't make it out. It is an ever constant disease. It never truly goes away. It lays there in wait, unsuspecting. I don't realize I'm slipping til I'm full in it, and I realize I'm mad and emotional about everyone and everything, and tired and sleeping the days away.

I've been on the brink of tears when reading or watching something about Robin Williams. Other famous deaths haven't done that to me before. Whatever it is about him, his life and death has affected me.

So, guess what I'm doing tomorrow after breakfast and checking how many people read this... That's right, strapping these puppies on and getting OUT THE DOOR!
These are my very first pair of actual running shoes. I like them!
*It definitely has meaning. Here are the lyrics: Give a listen here:
When darkness falls
And surrounds you.
When you fall down,
When you're scared
And you're lost. Be brave,
I'm coming to hold you now.
When all your strength has gone
And you feel wrong,
Like your life has slipped away.
Follow me.
You can follow me
And I, I will not desert you now.
When your fire's died out,
No one's there,
They have left you for dead.
Follow me.
You can follow me.
I will keep you safe,
Follow me.
You can follow me,
I will protect you.
I won't let them hurt, hurt you, no.
Ooh yeah.
When your heart is breaking.
You can follow me.
You can follow me.
I will always keep you safe,
Follow me,
You can trust in me.
I will always protect you, my love.
Feel my love
Feel my love.


James Newton said...

Actually this is one of my favorite Muse songs. Muse is interesting to me, having been a relatively new fan after learning about "Madness" -- I scoured through iTunes and grabbed a bunch of songs --- I find I like their moodier ones the best -- those featured in World War Z -- Madness, Follow Me -- good times. I had a friend take his life due to depression, in strangely, a similar way to Robin (hanging) -- tragic. He was one of those guys that had charisma and charm and always had a story to tell, so they both had that in common. Just don't understand it. I know it is serious. Thinking of you today.

Anthroslug said...

While I don't have problems with depression, I have long suffered with severe anxiety problems, and there is some similarity - I know how to handle things, but actually making myself do it is the difficult part. Once I start, it all becomes easier.

Glad to hear that you have found a good way of more effectively dealing with it.

Gwaciepoo said...

Thank you for sharing this part of your life with us. It takes real courage to do this. And it's also so helpful that you shared some activities that you have found help relieve some of the symptoms of depression. It is about self-care, and taking the time for it and realizing that you deserve the extra time. Way to go! Cheering you always from the Humboldt redwoods... home of the One Logg House. xoxo!