I know I have a touch of depression when several butterflies hatch at once and I’m not overjoyed. To be human is to have emotions that change, but when you’re stuck with the bummer ones it’s difficult to be active and thoughtful and think that you’ll change back. But if anything is a sign of change it’s the gorgeous caterpillars I love to raise. Here are some things that help me when I’m in a serious funk:
- Tell someone. It feels good to be be open and you might hear some great advice. Plus, if it gets worse? That person will be able to advocate for you.
- Try to do the activities that you love, just do them super slowly. Instead of flying through my garden or taking thousands of pictures of my daughter I took pictures of what I’m interested in very slowly. I knew I wasn’t going to love it because I can’t really love doing anything right now and that it would be good for me to try it slowly. The slow part of it is to show myself that I’m in some pain and that I’m taking it easy — it isn’t just a normal day, it’s a difficult day. It’s my way of telling myself, “I’m taking care of you.”
- I eat a pretty clean diet but these moods make me want donuts. For me, it’s better if I don’t give in. It will just lead to more sadness if I keep eating donuts and fries. So what I do is eat really well. Instead of cheddar I’ll eat ghouda. I do treat myself but just with better products. I can get to the kind of depression where you can’t get yourself to the kitchen to eat so when I’m in this stage I know it will help that from happening if I’m drinking lots of water and healthy foods now.
- Try to think of reasons of how this happened. I brainstormed and saw that my sleep has been off so maybe I need to change what time I take my medicine. You might need a med tune-up or to stop drinking or hanging around a particular person. Just try and think of what’s been making you unhappy recently. Look for patterns.
- Get professional help. A therapist and a group therapy session are two great ideas for this stage. Maybe I’ll need a psychiatrist visit soon if I don’t start rebounding. It’s all about listening to your body.