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Turning depression around

The Burden

on 29/09/2013

Our shoulders slouch with the weight of depression.  Our eyes and mouth are pulled downwards by its gravity.  Our mood is plunged to the deepest of depths.  Our heart sinks at the thought of life and living.

The burden can feel dry and concrete.  Cold and unyielding, it’s like boots that stop us from moving anywhere, even if that anywhere is sideways or backwards.  Sometimes it’s more viscous and cloying, like a transparent, oozing gel that sticks us to our bed, sealing our eyelids so that we can’t open them to a new day.  Either way, depression’s burden is physical, and ever-growing.

A phone call that we have to make, an email that we have to send, a form that we have to fill out – they’re all part of that burden.  If we still have the perspective to see every task we’re charged with for the individual chore that it is, we’re less likely to be daunted by our to-do list.  The chances are, though, that each new demand simply becomes another integrated part of the burden, because we allow the list’s shadow to become bigger than ourselves.  The most ordinary banality reinvents itself as a challenge that puts us in our place.

We’re more than aware of the burden we are to those around us, and that compounds our burden further.  The guilt we feel when we see the worry in their faces is magnified by the belief that they have other, more worthy concerns.  We’re frustrated by our own dependence on family, friends, or strangers, but we can’t deal with life without them.

Trying to carry our burden on our own will only get us so far, and in the long term, it will break us if we don’t share the yoke.  There are shoulders broad enough to help carry and ears that are open to hearing.  If we use them and give the burden a voice, it becomes lighter with each word we say, I promise.

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