I'm having some issues right now coming to terms with who and what I am, exactly, vis a vis this whole depression thing. I have to say that it really gets my goat when people treat this like it is something that I can choose to deal with or not deal with. Sure, the same shit happens to most of us. And sure, some of us make conscious decisions to ignore it, or to blow it out of proportion. I know people of both types.
But then there are those of us with a biological failing. Our brains aren't capable of making that distinction. Our brains react before we can stop them. We don't have the luxury of control that some people do. If all I had to do was to *choose* not to be sad, to *choose* not to be angry, what are the odds that I would ignore that choice and live this way voluntarily?
My mom recently had a good friend die of cancer. It was a particularly gruesome kind of cancer, not that there's a "good" kind. And to the end, to the very last day, she kept saying that she was going to beat this, she was going to live, she wasn't going to die. She said that she "chose" to live. And did it keep her alive? No. The cells in charge did what they do, and she died anyway.
I can "choose" to be happy all I want. Many days, I get up and take special note of all the things I see that should make me happy. I have affirmations. I have mantras. I "think positive." Does it help?
No, not really. I still get sad. I still get angry. I still get overwhelmed by feelings of despair and hopelessness. If I could *choose* not to respond to them, *choose* not to be depressed, why in the world would I live this way? Do people truly think that depressed people are just choosing to wallow in their sadness? That we're staying sad on purpose? To what end?