“As long as I can remember there has been a dark cave which I return to sooner or later.”

This is a comment by Tom Matlack on the post “Headaches“.

Andy thank you for this well written piece. I would say that depression is at the core of my problems at well. Yes I am an addict, sober now 15 years. But the booze was my attempt to self-medicate depression away. As long as I can remember there has been a dark cave which I return to sooner or later. Nothing has ever been able to take it’s existence in my life away–not booze, not women, not wealth, not extreme sports, not even proper medication. So for me its been a process of trying to come to terms with the dark cave which is part of me. I know no matter what I do there will be days when I am at a loss. And that too is okay.

My depression has fueled great manic spurts of energy which has allowed me to do amazing things no one thought possible and probably no one in their right mind would even attempt. But the most damaging thing it has done is stripped me of the ability to see myself as enough. Good enough, tall enough, strong enough, dad enough, husband enough, man enough. On those dark days I just sit and wait for it to pass, despite my medication and all that I have done to fight off the shadow. I have learned that to do nothing while in my cave is safest for me. And at some point the sun will shine again. And it will be over. But for me I know it will always be there.

Photo credit: Flickr / watchsmart

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  1. wet_suit_one says:

    Ah yes. Good ‘ol depression. It’s a fine friend in my view. Been with me since I was 12 or so. Only recently learned that suicidal ideation is not normal (fascinating that isn’t it?) and met my drug dealer (one of my most important relationships) as a result of it (note, legal mind altering chemicals only of course, but drug dealers all the same).

    It was an interesting day when I finally saw that my mind was broken, very much like a broken arm. Things have been better since. Still though, from time to time, dipping back into the cave has been a slice. It’s an interesting place to be and wrestling with death, mano a mano has been enlightening. So far I’ve won every match-up, but it’s been touch and go at times.

    Living life on the edge! Ain’t it grand?

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