It’s official

I suffer from depression.
I am Moderately Depressed.
There’s another even more official sounding diagnosis, but I don’t remember it.
I’m not sure if it’s “appropriate” to announce such a thing on the internet. I’m hoping that it’s easier, though, than actually telling people about it. Because I need people to know about it. Not everyone, certainly, but I’m an over-sharer by nature and this is something that it would be nice if people just knew so I didn’t have to keep explaining it.
I have heard from a couple of people who already know that I don’t seem depressed and I don’t act like I am depressed. I think my husband would disagree with that assessment. My depression doesn’t look on the outside like sadness. It looks like anger. I get unreasonably angry about things much more easily than I used to. I yell. A lot. I pick fights with Mike and swear a lot at work. These are not good things.
I have so many things to be happy about. Trust me, I am completely aware of why I should not be sad. A fantastic job where I am respected and get to use my brain (it’s not without it’s frustrations, but so much better than any other job I have had), a beautiful home and loving family (who have been putting up with more of my rage than they should have to), a pile of friends who get me off my couch and out of my house to do fun things on a regular basis. I don’t stay in bed all day crying. I don’t skip work or hide from social events and when I am out with my friends I have a good time. And yet…
In the past couple of months, more often than not, I don’t want to do anything. I do all the things I used to do, but it takes more energy than it used to. And I don’t want to do most of it. It’s not even that I would rather be doing something else. Describing this is so much harder than I thought it would be. It sounds pretty lame as I’m typing it.
One of the tools doctors use to diagnose depression is the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9). I’ve taken it a few times throughout my adult life and I have never had to honestly check any of the boxes in the “more than half the days” or “nearly every day” categories. This week I had check marks in those columns for 4 out of 9 questions. That’s what makes this official. I’m no longer just sometimes down and in need of a good cup of coffee and a shoulder to cry on. Now I’m Moderately Depressed.
What does it mean? Don’t know. Probably for now it means that I will try some anti-depressants and see if they help. For sure I’ll be making appointments for some therapy. The biggest question/concern that I have is whether or not this will be something temporary that I will work on for a while and recover from or whether I will continue to struggle with it for the rest of my life. Either way, my family, friends and co-workers deserve better and I need to be better. I’m tired of being so tired. I’m officially sick of it.

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