Wednesday, February 29, 2012

colouring the blues away.

If you suffer from depression, you will understand me when I say that on some days I wonder if I will ever feel better – or at the very least okay. You do your best to pretend that you're "feeling great" when people ask. Because, nobody wants to hear that you feel sad, and that you are completely exhausted all the time. They want to hear that your medication is working and you are exercising up a storm and productive and ready to conquer the world.

Sometimes it's not that easy though.

So you keep searching for ways to feel better. For me, the only thing that seems to help manage the noise in my head is channeling myself into creative outlets. I'm taking a painting class every week, and that seems to allow me some time and space to just "be" without having to worry about my life and the "what ifs" that keep me awake at night. I have also taken up colouring, which the kids love. We sit together and chat about how many sleeps it is until gymnastics, and I am taken to task for not buying raspberries on my last grocery run.

The hardest part of depression, for me, is that despite all of my best efforts, nothing I do seems to be working to pull myself out of it. I have favourite friends who make me laugh (but you know, they have jobs so I can't ask them to call me every day to help me smile). My writing muse seems to have up and left me. And while I know that exercising would help, I get tired from walking around the block. This isn't the me I want to be. I'm not telling you all this to make you feel sorry for me. I'm telling you so that you can have a better understanding of what a tough battle depression is. It isn't laziness, or being a downer – not purposely. It's a medical issue that is scary for the person dealing with it, and hard on the people around you.  Anyone feel like colouring?


  1. Anonymous11:27 a.m.

    We're rooting for you! Hopefully when "Forevuary" is over, the clouds will start to lift.

    Love Jen M

  2. Anonymous11:44 a.m.

    My favourite colouring books are the ones that are translucent paper--so you get a stained glass effect with out all the ouchy sharp glass. If you hang them in the window the light shines through them...

    They're a little finicky to be totally kid-friendly, but they're a nice change.

    Check 'em out (apologies for the insanely long link):

  3. Anonymous12:16 p.m.

    Kat, I'm sorry you're feeling down right now. I've been toeing that line for quite some time, so I totally sympathize.
    Where'd you get that coloring book? Might have to invest in one for myself!
    Big hugs. You've done it before, you can and will do it again!

  4. Anonymous1:05 p.m.

    Lots of love and positive thoughts from someone who lives with a long time depression sufferer. No words just lots of virtual hugs.

    Rhonda H.

  5. Thanks everyone.

    This colouring book is "Design by me birds" by American Girl. I picked it up at Michael's. I highly recommend investing in artist quality coloured pencils as well.

  6. Heather Reser2:26 p.m.

    Coloring is such great therapy...I used to do it alot in college to de-stress. February has been a tough month for me too. Honesty like yours goes a long way towards helping others understand what depression really is and how you just can't "wish" it away. Hope spring brings happier days your way! ~ Heather

  7. Actually, I have a pencil case full of brightly coloured sharpie markers here at my office and I too have been drawing - birds! I think that your page would make such lovely fabric. Creative outlet helps, soon spring will come, and hopefully that will help a bit.

  8. Vanessa4:02 p.m.

    I feel for you sweetie, for the very first time in my life this year I dealt with depression, for over 9 months ... (until now I'd never been depressed for more than a week).

    You're right, it is not laziness or just being a downer for the heck of it ... it really is all-consuming and scary. What amazes me so much about you is that despite carrying that burden, you manage to produce such beauty where most of us would likely just wallow in self-pity. Hang in there. We love you!!

  9. I LOVE coloring. I find it so relaxing and calming. I think that when thigns get really stressed out at work, someone should bust out the finely-sharpened crayons and we can all just CHILL.
    Hope your week is going better...