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Monday, October 09, 2006

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I will let you in on a little secret. It is not one that I am ashamed of but it is one I rarely discuss. I suffer from Depression. And it really sucks sometimes. I have felt feelings of depression since I was young but it wasn't given a name until I was older. I hate the term "Depression". I feel even as I write this I am being judged. I feel like someone is going to tell me to "snap out of it" or to "give my worries over to god". Those judgements hurt.

Anyway, Depression is something I have learned to live with. Most days are good. Some days are great! Some days are horrible. One thing that helps me through the rougher days is my "Joy Box". It is a little tiny suitcase that belonged to my grandmother. It is full of pictures, poems, letters and greeting cards. When I am having a particularly sad day I open it up and spend some time looking through it and I don't feel as sad. Inside are reminders that I am loved and that tomorrow is a new day.

I haven't told many people that know me personally about my "Joy Box". Most people that know me personally don't know about the Depression. I just thought it was time I shared it here. I am going to print out this picture of the little foal and put it in my box. He makes me smile. :)


Anonymous PBS said...

Yes, some people are very un-empathetic and will say things like, "smile, it can't be that bad" and other stupid stuff. Your box sound like a great way to cope with and up your mood! Walking does it for me.

3:26 a.m.  
Anonymous lauraj said...

I love the idea of a Joy box!! Sadly depression is very misunderstood. Rest assured that you are not alone and I too suffer from time to timme. I don't have a joy box and I can't think of something that helps me to cope. Oh Video Games!! I love me some video games.

6:16 a.m.  
Anonymous happy and blue 2 said...

The joy box sounds like a great idea. Glad it helps you.
But of course you should just "snap out of it", ha,ha..

8:56 a.m.  
Blogger Chameleon said...

Im glad that I came across your blog. I have battled with the dreaded D for years. I totally agree with the above said, that sadly depression is very misunderstood. Anxiety has never really left my side. The whole reason I started my own blog was to tell all about my life, you know, the nitty gritty stuff that is not always easy to talk about.I love the title of your blog also, and I will definitely be back to read more.

Take Care :0)

5:31 p.m.  
Blogger Chameleon said...

Me again! Sorry, I'm not stalking you, but I do have a question for you. I have added the link to your blog under my "Other Chameleons" links section. If this is a problem please let me know and I will take it off. I love adding other bloggers to that list, because I think that it's really important that our stories get told. Plus there is the added bonus that we can be supportive to each other :0)

7:27 p.m.  
Blogger One-Ripe-Tomato said...

Since you shared about your "Joy Box" ~:o) I'll share with you that I too deal with depression and have since I was a child. My home is my "joy box," then again, I share my home with a mouthy cat who doesn't care either way as long as he gets fed unlike sharing a house with two-dependents, lol!

How I've learned to deal with it has been by trial and error. I've been told to pull myself up by my bootstraps more than once and even had counter-transference issues thrown at me by family members who hold PhDs in psychology. I ignore them. I think they're worse than I am since I at least don't make matters worse than they already are.

What I've learned on my own is that we are thinking, feeling, and acting creatures and, if one gets changed, the others will follow suit. And just like pbs mentioned, "walking does it," yet changing any of the triad will work.

*HUGS, Goily!*

8:34 p.m.  
Blogger Ms. Q said...

Hey Barbara! I wish I had a Joy Box! All I have is my Celexa! Gah!

Being depressed sucks and I get really torqued when people tell me to cheer up. Like, Don't bleeping tell me to cheer up! :)

I try hard to do what I need to do to combat it, and I think Depression is the same as any other physical ailment. No one judges us if we have Diabetes, why do they judge us if we're sad/blue/not motivated/whatever.

I'm here for you to talk to about it. It's a really serious problem. So don't ever make light of it!! Thanks for sharing! And don't feel like you need to hide it for us.!

I've missed hanging out here. I need to do it more! You're so cool.

10:05 p.m.  
Blogger deni said...

Those of us deal who suffer from depression deal with it in different ways. I am glad you have your Joy Box.

I like just going somewhere where it is quiet, and just sitting and thinking, like the woods. Something about trees and nature are so peaceful.

4:35 a.m.  
Blogger Catherine said...

I'm always saddened when I find out about people I care about also deal with depression. As you are well aware, I also suffer and it just hurts so bad inside that I don't want anyone that I love to feel this way. I love your joy box! What a wonderful way to remember all the good things. As is everyone that reads here, if you ever need anyone, I'm here for you.

5:10 a.m.  
Blogger Erin said...

I probably started being depressed in Junior High, but I never knew what was wrong until I was 22. People who have never delt with it, are not able to understand how deep rooted it is, how disabling it can be, how much impact it has on day to day life and our will to get up in the morning. And, as soon as you tell someone you are medicated for depression, they think back to the way the drugs used to make people. Emotionless, blank, sleepy etc. But there is a whole new world of medication out there. I couldn't handle day to day life without mine. I still have all my moods and all my feelings, I just no longer have senseless eratic mood swings. To the people who are critics of depression, I say... you don't know what it's like to lose a limb, but that doesn't mean it's not real, not cripling. Don't discredit something on the merits of you not understanding.

12:11 p.m.  
Blogger sharon said...

I have, like so many people, suffered from mild depression on and off throughout my life. Sometimes less mild than other times. People who don't know me well would never guess, because I love to laugh, and am generally upbeat when I'm out and about. The thing is, EVERYONE has SOMETHING that hinders the flow of life. If it wasn't depression, it would be something else. I've gone on St John's Wart, which may or may not be strong enough for you, but it really helped me. After taking it for a couple of weeks, I started to feel alot better about life in general. Maybe you should give it a go. It's very natural and has VERY few of the side affects that other antidepressants have.

2:14 p.m.  
Anonymous lujza said...

I think it's awesome that you have your "joy box" to get you through the toughest....I think we should all own a special little box of things that make us smile and warm our inners.

*hugs to you*

3:00 p.m.  
Blogger Jezzy said...

There are lots of us who know how you feel.

3:00 a.m.  
Blogger thequeen said...

What a brilliant idea!!! You have inspired me to make a joy box!!!
As you know, I too suffer from depression. I also hate that word. Just saying makes me feel like I am judging myself and will be judged harshly by others. When people tell me to get over it or give my worries to god. It kinda pisses me off. If it was that easy don't they think we would have done that! I have found that something that helps me is blogging. Writing helps me get things off my chest and the responses that I get let me know I am not alone in the world. I gotta go make that box now! That little colt makes me smile too. So cute!

11:10 a.m.  
Blogger Richard said...

I empathize with you. While I do not (to the best of my knowledge) suffer from depression, I did go through a 2-3 year period of extreme despondency (all signs and symptoms pointed to depression). In my case, I was lucky and it lifted, like a fog being burned off by the morning sun. While my days are not always sunny, I certainly do not get anywhere near the depths I once did. When I first started feeling better, I was always afraid I would fall back, but I haven’t and it has been a little more than year since my despondency has lifted.

I hope that one day you are able to walk out from this oppression and walk freely and confidently in the sunlight. That feeling of heaviness, or listlessness, of futility is awful and I hope it passes quickly and comes ever less frequently until one day it is nothing more than a distant memory.

3:49 p.m.  
Blogger Hillary said...

A 'joy box!' What a great idea. Really, we all should have one of those! :)

10:51 p.m.  
Blogger Muse's Maiden said...

Hang in there, lil darlin'
It's rough being down but the lighter side to it is that there's an upside and it'll be with ya sometime soon.

I bet someone has told ya once or twice just how your face lights up when you smile, haven't they? And it's true, too. I smiled really big when I saw your picture. It brightened my day, big time!

12:45 a.m.  
Anonymous Curtis said...

I think we all have our own little Joy Box and we all suffer the same as you, some more so than others but it's a part of life. I'm not ashame to admit it and I'll be the last one to judge you for it. It's really good to have something or some place that makes us feel better.

3:47 p.m.  
Blogger GardeningJo said...

no judgements or snap out of it's here! hell, one of my posts is titled "depression sucks!"! (another of my posts is titled "just because i say you don't understand doesn't mean i'n playing the victim or making excuses!"!)

i don't think it's taken seriously enough ~ you can study it all you like, you can hear about it, but, unless you actually experience it (in one or more of it's many forms) you can't relate, empathize or understand & therefore it's brushed aside so easily!

i feel as though i've been depressed most of my life & i've really got no idea why! i feel as though no matter what i do, i always end up right back here, struggling to maintain control! it's exhausting & it gets the better of me a lot!

i don't have a links section, but i'm doing a links post and would like to include you - if that's not alright, pls let me know & i'll edit the post.

7:28 p.m.  
Blogger GardeningJo said...

ps! years ago i started what i call 'image' journals that i've pasted words, sayings/quotes, a few poems and mostly pictures from mags, even some of the advertising, just because i liked it or felt a connection to it.

i do have boxes that contain lots of pics, cards, stubs, trinkets & who knows what else but, unless they are the ones i've filled since meeting my husband, i wouldn't call them joy boxes! but, they are what's left of certain parts of my past & are there if i feel the need to remember.

7:34 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your joy box sounds wonderful. I think everyone should have one. Just know you are loved, Barbara and you have TONS of friends who think about you everyday. :0)

8:15 a.m.  

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