I am writing this blog on Friday, November 16. This has been a depressing week, in the general sense of the word, for I have not been depressed in the clinical sense of the word.
On Monday, the flu descended on me with a dull thump. As the saying goes, I was sicker than a dog. As the flu started to abate on Wednesday, I was the victim of a second thumping – one of the worst colds I have ever had. On a wellness scale of 1 to 10, I was a 3 at best. To compound matters, I slept dreadfully Wednesday night and awoke Thursday morning in a fog.
The result of this onslaught was that I could not think clearly, had a fever and headaches, and had the energy level of a malnourished and sickly ant. I ached with each step. I moaned with each small task. I just wanted people to leave me alone. That’s when I thought, “This is like the depression I went through for five years.”
Not a chance! It isn’t even close. There were times in my clinical depression when I was at a -10 on the wellness scale, maybe even a -20 at times. There were literally times when I didn’t know who I was.
Those of you who have experienced major depression know what I’m talking about. For those who haven’t, perhaps my recent illustration will give you a new framework for understanding the condition.
Don’t worry about me now. Today I’m up to a 5 and getting better each hour. Next week I’ll be up to an 8 or 9. Flu and colds pass quickly; depression can linger for a long time – for me five years, for others a lifetime.