This morning I woke up completely deflated. I’ve been feeling weak again. I’m emotionally and physically drained. All I wanted to do was lay in bed and do nothing. I knew, though, that my utter exhaustion had much more to do with stress than my disease and decided I would force myself to get up and not just lay in bed all day. That’s right!!! FORCE myself up. I know as much as any of us with some retched chronic illness, the importance of listening to our bodies and resting when needed. BUT, you have to decide, “Am I really tired or am I just depressed?”
Depression and stress trigger all kinds of ridiculous symptoms and can even cause flare ups. That’s why it’s so important to continually assess the level of stress that we are carrying. With that being said, life can often throw us unpredictable stressors that can cause us to tumble into despair if we allow it.
So, keep it in check:
- You feel tired/exhausted/drained, etc. Ask yourself whether you’ve physically asserted yourself too much and need to rest, or if the stress in your life/depression over your illness is taking you down.
- If it’s the latter, GET UP! Get outside. Smell a flower, go to your favorite coffee shop, draw pictured on your sidewalk with chalk whilst wearing your bathrobe and make your neighbors wonder, do ANYTHING but just lay around in the pits of your depression
- If you can’t force yourself to get up…If you can’t bare to face another day and just feel yourself spiraling, SEEK HELP. My therapist and my pastor have become my lifeline. I’m not ashamed to say that I’m not beyond reproach. I realized I needed more help than I could give myself and I asked for it. Suicide rates among those with chronic illnesses is alarmingly, but not surprisingly, high. YOU are worth life! YOU are loved and NEEDED! And so am I.