(November 22, 2019)

My depression is dragging on, but in a roller coaster fashion – some days really bad, some not so bad. What occurs to me is that I’m actually in a position to learn a lot right now. I’ve been wanting to write about how a person can best support friends with depression. This is a mystery to so many. Yet to be able to give good support can be such a blessing for those of us who need it. I’m trying to keep track of what is helping me right now. This is the silver lining of depression. You can use what you learn from it to help others.

Yesterday was a bad day. How I wished someone would call me and toss me a lifesaver, an indication that they cared. With my husband off on a holiday I felt quite alone. I suppose I could have done the reaching out and called a friend, but I would have felt like I was being a bother. What could I say except to complain about how badly I felt? I did write a couple of emails letting friends know what I was going through. If I didn’t do that I would truly have felt like I was sinking. We need to stay in touch with people if we’re to stay on the surface. That’s how it is for me anyway.

I was relieved in the evening to receive a call from each of my sisters. They were compassionate. They know very well what it means to be depressed and they’re aware that this was triggered by our mom’s problems. I know they will stay in touch, tossing me a lifesaver when I need it.

What I was really thankful about was a call from a close friend who knew how I felt because I had emailed her. She spent some time talking with me, truly helping me with my pain. She did not advise me or try to fix me – just showed compassion. Neat thing she did: she suggested that one day, when we’re both feeling better (this is the friend who is physically not well), we will get together and do some Christmas baking. That idea so appealed to me. If she had suggested we do it right then and there, I would not have been able – I would have felt pressured and turned off by the thought of it. But to think of doing this in the future appealed to me. It offered me a window of hope, something to look forward to.

Today was good. I went to Curves and had lunch with my mom at the home, something I need to do more often. I’ll try to use the light I’m receiving from my friend’s window of hope to bake some fudge brownies tonight. They’re a cinch to make and she loves chocolate. How good I would feel if I could give her some! Hope she will like them because she badly needs to put on some weight.

Maybe this window of hope will lead to others. I know I do feel like I have a lot to write about right now….Perhaps an article on support?…Perhaps a workbook to help others through their depression?