What is Depression Really Like?

Depression has a stigma attached to it, but it’s not something to be feared; it’s also not something a person can simply “snap out of” just because you tell them to. You don’t need to tip-toe around people with depression, and you don’t need to hide them away.

Depression is not something you can snap out of.

I want to share two analogies from this article on depression that help put some perspective on what it’s like.

~ONE~

Unless you have experienced it, you can never truly understand

How many of you have a tail? You know, like a monkey. If you haven’t (which I hope is everyone), can you imagine what it is like to grip a branch or maybe just swing it back and forth? It’s impossible isn’t it?

We’ve never had one so that’s not surprising.

Depression is similar to that. If it’s something that you have never experienced then you can try as hard as you want, but you will never truly know what it feels like.

~TWO~

You cannot just ‘snap out of it’ or ‘pull yourself together’

I like analogies so steady your hats because here comes another one.

Depression is like trying to run through water and being told to get over it is akin to suddenly being able to move like you can on dry land. It’s impossible. You can grit your teeth and attempt to get some momentum going but ultimately the density will prevent you from moving quickly.

When depression has its grip on you, life becomes water. The air around you becomes water, crushing you with its weight and even the simplest tasks become difficult. You feel sluggish, both mentally and physically and nothing can snap you out of it.

You have essentially become trapped inside your own prison and true access to your brain lies behind that locked door. Sometimes, briefly, you are allowed outside to stretch your legs but you know this is temporary. Eventually you will have to return to your cell and wait patiently for a time when you are given another opportunity to function like a normal member of society.

The Science of Depression

Don’t be afraid you’ll set someone with depression off or treat them like loose canons. Be yourself. Don’t be insensitive (there’s never a right place for insensitivity), but don’t coddle them either. If they don’t feel like going out or joining a party, don’t force the issue. Partying isn’t a cure for depression. If they do choose to go out and you see them having a good time, don’t try to take credit for “curing” them. You haven’t! People with depression can and do have good days, weeks, sometimes even months.

Confused? That’s OK. You don’t have to figure it out. You just have to know that people with depression are not aliens.

Should’ve vs Should of

Tuesday Tidbits

Read this sentence out loud: “I should’ve learned about contractions in third grade.”

You hear “I should of learned about contractions in third grade.” I get that. I can’t believe how many people actually write or type it like that, though. Again, I’m not perfect when it comes to grammar, but there are certain things that stand out to me. This is one of them.

Panera Bread Lunch and People Watching

MOBILE MONDAY comes from my Surface tablet this week.

I’m sitting at a small table at Panera Bread enjoying a half order of Cobb Salad with avocado, iced tea with lemon, and a French Baguette while listening to Pandora through earbuds. First song by Bon Iver. Cool. Next song … La Vienne Rose. I closed my eyes and imagined I was at a café on a street in Paris. Daydreaming is good for the soul.

Dining on the streets of Paris.

People watching is fun but with earbuds in, it’s easy to disappear in the crowd. I’m in my own little world with my French music. Watching people without hearing them is nearly as interesting.


Observations

  • An older couple that appear to be in a quarrel.
  • Two at a table deep in conversation; possibly a lunch date.
  • Ladies meeting with a friendly hug.
  • A young lady sitting at the next table, holding her purse and keys, seems to be waiting for someone.
  • A guy checking his phone in line waving the next guy ahead of him; he decides to sit and check his phone further before ordering.
  • A mother and young son – the boy has headphones on; she puts her arm around him.
  • An employee cleaning up the coffee station and changing a trash bag.
  • A gentleman in a nice suit enters and holds the door open for the next guy in a t-shirt and jogging pants. The suited gentleman is who the young lady was waiting for! They exchange smiles and get in line.
  • A little boy drives his Hot Wheels car over counters and runs in circles.
  • A young woman in a corner seat pecks away at her laptop.
  • Four men at the other end of the restaurant each with laptops out.
  • That little boy running back and forth on the all-weather rug, stopping to playfully spank his mum’s bum with both hands before turning and running the rug again.
  • People in nice clothes; probably on their work lunch break.
  • A middle-aged couple eating at a table outside in the unseasonably warm sunshine.
  • Two elderly ladies walk in together. Old friends? Me someday.
  • An older guy fills a cup with hot water and chooses a teabag before grabbing a newspaper; he sits a table behind me.
  • Two more ladies with kiddos enter – one with two girls and the other with one girl. Mommy meet-up?
  • An elderly couple both with snow white hair.
  • A guy in a suit with a black backpack; possibly working through lunch or meeting someone.

I’d love to continue observing people, but I’m off to a hair appointment. I’m getting a little too long on top to deal with. Toutes de la fruit!

Follow me on Facebook!

Symptoms of Asperger Syndrome

Symptoms of Asperger syndrome

More males than females are diagnosed with Asperger syndrome or ASD. While every person who has the condition will experience different symptoms and severity of symptoms, some of the more common characteristics include:

  • average or above-average intelligence
  • difficulties with high-level language skills such as verbal reasoning, problem solving, making inferences and predictions
  • difficulties in empathising with others
  • problems with understanding another person’s point of view
  • difficulties engaging in social routines such as conversations and ‘small talk’
  • problems with controlling feelings such as anger, depression and anxiety
  • a preference for routines and schedules which can result in stress or anxiety if a routine is disrupted
  • specialised fields of interest or hobbies.

Emotions of other people

A person with Asperger syndrome may have trouble understanding the emotions of other people, and the subtle messages sent by facial expression, eye contact and body language are often missed or misinterpreted. Because of this, people with Asperger syndrome might be mistakenly perceived as being egotistical, selfish or uncaring.

These are unfair labels because the person concerned may be unable to understand other people’s emotional states. People with Asperger syndrome are usually surprised when told their actions were hurtful or inappropriate.

Source: Asperger Syndrome and Adults

Mobile Monday

Here’s an idea … mobile posts on Mondays. I’m off on Mondays so if an idea hits me while I’m out and about, I can jot a quick post from my mobile device.

I finished reading Doctor Sleep by Stephen King, and I’ve seen both movie versions on The Shining but have never read the book. Can you guess what I’m reading now? THE SHINING!

image

The mini series was truer to the book, but at about 30 pages in, I’m already finding so much content not depicted in either movie.

Oops! I Did it Again!

An idea popped into my head as I pulled into the garage this morning. It was literally like one of those light bulb moments followed immediately by the thought, “Huh! Why didn’t I think of that before?!”

When these thoughts get in my head, I have to act on them immediately. So an old shelf unit that used to be full of stuff I rarely touched is now in the family room to hold the vintage-looking phonograph/CD player/cassette player, which also takes an AUX cable and connects to devices via Bluetooth.

Phonograph and Albums

I then set up another table in my office to create a U-shaped desk layout. Now I have work-from-home space, personal computing space, and a writing/crafting space where others can also possibly hang out and do homework or bring a laptop and edit photos with me.

U-Shaped Desk Layout

I rearranged furniture once again! It happens.

The Dangers of Constant Grazing or Frequent Meals

I used to graze all day long and not gain an ounce. Then I kissed my teens and 20s goodbye and something real started to happen … fat stores! OK, my more sedentary lifestyle over the past seven years has played a considerable part in this as well. I realize that!

If you sit for long periods of time and a) graze on snacks all day; b) eat very little during the day and graze on various foods all evening; or c) eat smaller, frequent meals on the belief that this boosts your metabolism, then you should read this article on the dangers of frequent eating. This Snack Attack article also has a lot of great info (fair warning on slightly indecent links to other articles on that page).

I always think about being proactive about my health and fitness level. Sometimes I even do a few exercises or take a walk but never develop a habit of it. As the months of procrastination turned into years, this is what happened to my 5’3″ small-boned (my wrist is only 5.75″) frame that used to weigh between 108 and 112 pounds for a long time. Cut to 138 pounds…

Aging Body Shape

Some of you may scoff at “138 pounds” and think that you WISH you weighed that. This is why I emphasized my height and bone structure. My normal healthy weight at nearly 48 years old should be 114-120 pounds. A healthy BMI is 18.5–24.9 … I’m pushing the upper limit at 24.4.

I’ve had to purchase new clothes, and my one new larger pair of slightly stretchy blue jeans is sadly neglected. I can’t stand how the button area of jeans poke into my stomach anyway. Yes, I’m one of those who hates a sock seam digging into the side of my little toe! :O That’s a whole other issue, though.

If you are blessed with a freakishly high metabolism for your entire life, I bow down to you. Most of us are not.

I hesitated to post this because I don’t want anyone to feel self-conscious about their body image. That’s not what this is about. This is about being fit and healthy without becoming obsessive or developing an eating disorder.

Yes, we should accept ourselves and others exactly how we are. We should also be taking care of ourselves. If you are eating right, avoiding excessive junk, and exercising regularly, then accept your body. If you are eating terribly and are not regularly active, then you CAN do something more.

I know I can do something more, so I’m no longer blowing off the current shape of my body and simply accepting it as it is. Shame on me for settling and neglecting my health!

Life is Kind of Pointless | Deep Thoughts

Life in general is kind of pointless. What’s it all for? Anything?

I work because I’m paid to do it. That tiny part makes sense to me. I clean because why? Oh yeah! So it can get messed up again. I attempt to have fun because … ? I don’t have an answer for that one because it seems selfish to have fun.

There are so many things to do, but I have trouble picking something to do because after I’ve done it, I wonder why I did it. What did it really matter. How did it make my life any better for having done it? So I sit. So I wonder.

I think of all the things that need to be done in and for this house and freeze up because I don’t know where to start or how to get it all done.

I consider all the things other people do – people who seem to be constantly busy … too busy to get together with friends or family and just BE. I don’t want to be like them. I want to sit … and just BE.

Why do I have to create a list of accomplishments in my life? Does it add to anyone’s worth to say they have done this, that, and another thing?

I’m not great at any one thing. Really. I’m just average at anything I do. No. That’s a lie. I’m pretty great at sitting on my ass. So that’s what I’ll do.