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Ros3

Losing Time: The Worst Part of My Depression

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Summary: Rant, & does anyone else feel like they're wasting their life? (warning, it's a downer so don't read if you're not in the mindset for that sort of thing.) 

The last day of my freshmen year of college a friend I'd met during welcome week (and who shared most of my classes with me thereafter) asked me something in passing: "What was your favorite part of the year?" The answer came to me immediately, but I paused for a minute. There was that familiar fear of sounding too sad, the fear of being seen as "whiny", or an "attention seeker", of being "found out", of seeming like a downer. But I was OK this time, I thought, I'd always been "happy" around this friend, I didn't confide in him. I didn't really confide in anyone, for that matter, but I knew I hadn't let too much "slip" around this guy.  "Honestly, I can't think of one." I was so miserable, every day. I didn't say that last part. 

I thought of that moment on my 20th birthday, sitting in my therapist's office. I cried the entire hour - I never cry, and I certainly had never cried in front of her before. Every time someone said "Happy birthday, ___!" It felt like someone was asking me all over again, "What was your favorite part of the good life, huh?"  And I had the same answer. "Honestly I can't think of one. I was so miserable, every day." That was a really hard time. Usually I just float, I don't let myself get that existential. I unfollowed all my old friends on instagram, I avoid weekend updates on facebook, I don't watch snapchat stories - I can't stand being reminded of what life should be like. I don't think about it. I just sit in my room all day, deaf and blind to everyone around me growing, learning, experiencing life, making memories, and try to numb everything going on inside. My mind is so overwhelmingly blank most days, and my feelings so powerful, I don't have the time or energy to feel jealous or mourn my losses.

But that day, I looked back at twenty years and I saw so much loss. I saw myself in fourth grade: ears pink, face flushed, eyes watering, throat dry, heart racing at every social interaction. I saw myself in eighth grade: laying in bed all day, refusing to speak to anyone, sick to my stomach for months at a time. I saw myself freshman year of high school: isolated, embarrassed, aimless, praying to God that I would wake up and be the only person in the whole world so that I could stop having to pretend, stop having to feel so much of what everyone around me did, drowning in empathy, low self-esteem and anxiety. I saw myself at high school graduation: relieved, scared, excited, going into a field I knew I hated because at least, maybe, if I could get the degree (yeah, right)  I might be useful to somebody (yeah, right). Half my youth, gone. My entire childhood, lost. No real boyfriends, no first loves, no group of childhood friends, no hobbies, no talents, no longterm jobs (so much anxiety), no personal development: twenty years of exhaustion, of enduring life as it came, of pretending, of trying to please everyone, hoping that someday somebody, or something, would save me. My whole life behind closed doors, my whole life on mute - outside, so far outside, looking in at a foreign movie with the subtitles turned off. It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say I've spent more time alone in my room than anywhere else. Is this how it's always going to be? Will I look back at the end and see more of the same abyss? God, I hope not. 

Does anyone else struggle with this? Feeling like you're wasting your life? Time that you'll never get back to pursue a skill, better your emotional and social intelligence, to do things in your youth that might never again be socially, legally, financially or physically possible? I guess it feels a lot like getting left behind. For me, it was like the fast forward button got hit the day that first wave of anxiety hit, and then everything paused with depression. Everybody else is so much better at being human than me, it feels like. Sometimes  people talk to me and I run out of generic responses and I just stop, a deer in headlights, and we're left staring at each other in a blackhole of silence. My head is white static. I'm always struggling to figure out what to say to people, how to respond, always with one word answers or short, close-ended comments. I never learned how to carry a conversation, never learned how to talk about my feelings or express myself, I never learned who I was as a person outside of depressed, numb, scared. At this point, I don't even know if it's possible to rehabilitate: If I'll ever be able to be in a relationship, friendship, community. If I'll ever be able to live inside of me, whoever that is, instead of a daze a million miles away. 

It's not that I don't have anyone who tried to teach me, had a really bad childhood or anything like that. I have family who loves me, who checks up on me and is accepting. I have opportunities to go out, make friends, meet people. I just can't. I have no energy, I have nothing to talk about, I feel so overwhelmed and crowded by people. Every option seems like the wrong one, and I'm so anxious all the time. I have an identical twin sister who didn't go through any of this: who's bright and smart and energetic, who loves people and life, who has an amazing job, studying what she's passionate about, has a string of handsome and engaging boyfriends, a group of incredible friends, who is beautiful and charismatic and loved. I don't know how I got here. I have no clue how I got to this point, or where the last two decades have gone. Anyways, sorry for the length. Please, if anyone else feels like this, tell me your story. I don't want to feel alone in this anymore. 

Edited by Ros3
typo

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I sort of relate to what you're saying.  I've just registered here as well so finding my feet too, but I connected with some of your story so I decided to reply.  Its horrible to pour your heart out and no one replies.  Just echoes the lonliness even more.

My life was fantastic until 9 months ago when someone done something to destroy me and carried on with the line of devastation.  IT caused my depression and anxiety and put me in a dark place which I had never seen the likes of.  Its these last 9 months that make me connect with your story.  

I had a business and was developing my skill set in an area I was passionate about.  It now means nothing anymore.  I enjoyed an active life, festivals, days out, holidays.  It now means nothing anymore.  I used to enjoy music and watching tv.  It now means nothing anymore.  In fact life means nothing anymore, although strictly speaking thats not true.  It all reminds me of what I did have, what I should have.  I've cancelled all my social media accounts as I cant bear to see other people living their life.  I dont go out cos I cant bear to see other people living their life.  I hate the sunny days - I should be living my life but thats gone.  I can hear children playing in their gardens and dogs barking and each little noise is another stab at the life I dont have.  LIke you I sit in my bed all day frustrated that I'm losing all this precious time that I should be 'living' but keeping the curtains closed and wishing the time would hurry up and go so that I can do what I have to do before I can die.

This one person could change all of this, but I doubt that will happen.  This game is destroy or be destroyed and I know how it ends.  But yes, its all such a waste.  I've lost 9 months, I've lost the rest of my life.

For you, you have a family and people who at least try to talk to you even if you find that difficult.  I can't advise you how to deal with that but know they care and maybe just one day a week make an effort to have one conversation.  I have no one - literally no one.  I haven't seen or spoken to another human being for 10 days now, and the last interaction was with a complete stranger when I had to speak to someone about filling in forms.  When I die I wont be found, I wont be missed.  I guess when I the rent hasn't been paid for a couple of months the bailiffs might find me on eviction day but thats about it.  Even just one person who cares is a whole lot so try not to run away from that too far.  The voice of experience here  - nothing else matters.

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I have felt like I was wasting my life.  I started making changes.  I got lucky fall 2017.  I do what I need to do to make money and do what I want when I can. 

I am now in a well paying career field but the work is pretty boring.  I have almost rage quit a few times but thought about what I would lose. 

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The poignant words you wrote . . . [you write so well!] I have certainly experienced something quite similar.  Sadly, tendinitis pain in my hands prevents me from sharing my story right how.  I sure hope something changes for the better for you.  You deserve better, Ros3.    - epictetus

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13 hours ago, Ros3 said:

It's not that I don't have anyone who tried to teach me, had a really bad childhood or anything like that. I have family who loves me, who checks up on me and is accepting. I have opportunities to go out, make friends, meet people. I just can't. I have no energy, I have nothing to talk about, I feel so overwhelmed and crowded by people. Every option seems like the wrong one, and I'm so anxious all the time

This is me. I have everything I ever need. I just don’t understand why I never use them well and I too have wasted a lot of my time on just being depressed. 

Somehow we gotto tell ourselves there is still time for us. We are not alone. We make mistakes in the past (still making now) but that’s ok learning is a life long thing. Most of my posts in this forum is really just me advising myself. Hang in there!

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Welcome! Thanks for your sharing. I can relate to pretending all my life that I was okay and normal yet inside I feared there was something terribly wrong with me. I was always trying to please everyone which was so draining. I didn't know until much later that I have an illness that I didn't cause and can't control. I was finally able to get some help for myself.

Hope you keep coming back, reading, and posting. You are not alone in this.

BW

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I've wasted my whole life.  If you look at my life it looks like someone's life that drank and did drugs for 20 years.  Even after I've sobered up it doesn't look much better.

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