July 2, 2021

Let’s Normalize Depression & Talk about the Hard Stuff.


Lately, I haven’t wanted to do anything.

I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who feels this way.

I don’t know if this is depression. I don’t know if my medication needs to change. I don’t know if it’s simply because of COVID-19 and this languishing feeling.

Maybe it stems from being alone for so long that I merely got into the habit of doing nothing. It could be that I’ve cut out so many things in my life that I’m now bored and find unuseful ways of coping, like binging on TV shows.

I struggle to get out of bed in the morning. I push myself to work out. I’m not belly dancing, nor do I have a desire to do so. I find it challenging to teach yoga, which used to be one of the things I looked forward to. But I push myself, anyway, because I don’t want to let my students down.

I force myself to get to work, but I’m nearly always late by a few minutes. My job is flexible, but I used to be at the computer by 8 a.m.—if not earlier—like clockwork. I don’t want to participate in meetings, I don’t want to deal with people, especially those who are needy, and I don’t want to do the menial tasks that need to be done to move sales forward.

I struggle to find the motivation to work on our website or schedule social media posts. I used to feel so productive, but not anymore. It feels like I get nothing done.

I don’t want to talk to friends as it’s a struggle to respond to messages from people. I’m sorry if it took me three days to get back to anyone.

Now, I’m shopping and buying things I don’t need. My diet has changed so much that I feel like I rarely eat anything healthy. I’ll take the ice cream, popcorn, or mac and cheese, thank you. What happened to my mid-morning snack of fruit? It was one of the things I looked forward to each workday. I’m even eating when I’m not hungry.

I don’t even want to write. I feel like I have nothing to write about. Or if I had something to write about, that no one cares to read it. But, as Waylon always reminds us in the Academy, I’m writing about the problem.

So, I decided to share this in the hopes that in case someone else feels the same way, they don’t end up feeling alone.

Despite wanting to be alone all the time right now, it doesn’t feel good to think I’m the only one going through this. After many discussions, I’ve discovered that rarely am I the only one going through something. This means that talking about it is crucial as it can help so many people feel less alone in their experience.

But we, as a culture, don’t talk about difficult things. I’m not sure where it stems from. Maybe it was the Christian belief that embedded the idea that all things bad are because of Satan. Perhaps it’s something from the Victorian era when things were so strict. Or It could be from a generation in the 20th-century that felt it was necessary to “suck it up, buttercup.”

Regardless of the reason, we are at a point where we don’t often speak about death, depression, anger, grief, or sexuality. And whenever someone does speak of these things, the listener doesn’t know how to respond, making the whole situation feel awkward while reinforcing the feeling that we shouldn’t be talking about these things in the first place.

It’s so challenging to communicate our issues that spiritual bypassing has become a significant problem, especially in witchcraft and alternative healing communities. We have to keep our vibrations high all the time and we shouldn’t be around low vibration (aka depressing) people. This can lead us to get rid of our friends when they are going through rough times, which doesn’t help anyone.

I also think part of the problem is that we don’t like to believe that we, too, will have to go through difficult things.

I know we need to start talking about this more often and listening when people talk to us. But rather than responding with the things we are going through, let’s hear what our friends and family have to say. I have started telling people if they need an ear to hear them out and validate them to let me know that. I will put my ears on and zip my mouth except to acknowledge what they are saying.

Let’s start going to therapy (if we aren’t already) and normalizing it. There is nothing wrong with going to therapy. In fact, it can teach us a lot about ourselves and why people act the way they do.

I know that with working out, once the momentum is finally built, it’s much easier to keep going. Maybe I need to push myself to spend time with friends in the real world and create the habit of working out every morning. I’ve always liked being busy, so perhaps I need to include more events in my life.

And maybe people will read this and some will reach out to say they feel the same way. Or maybe my writing will be of benefit, which may push me to write even more.


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