“I saw my reflection in the snow-covered hills, till the backslide brought me down”

Am I even getting better? Will I ever not be depressed?

Everyone who has clinical depression, has accepted the fact that they may never be “cured”. Depression isn’t something where one day you’ll wake up and magically feel better. You’re probably never going to wake up and jump out of bed dancing like you see on those ridiculous Tampax commercials. That begin said getting out of bed will eventually get easier, however there will be days when it seems just as impossible as going back in time. This is called a backslide. No, not backside. Backslide. Both are pretty shitty though..

You’ll be feeling great, you’re energetic, positive and dare I say it, happy! Then all of a sudden, like a truck hitting a wall, your mood plummets. You can be sitting there and physically feel yourself slowing down and there isn’t anything you can do to stop it. Backslides can last anywhere from hours to years. Well shit. That blows. But don’t worry they can actually be good for you, you just have to find a better way to view them. Don’t think of backsliding as a failure, think of it as your mind’s way of keeping you modest, and reminding you to keep working towards happiness.

When you’re depressed people always try to make you feel better by saying “think how bad some people have it, be happy for the life you have”. Yes, I realize I’ve had it easy compared to other people in other countries across the world. But growing up we are also taught not to compare ourselves to others. So what do you do? I’ll tell you what not to do and that is look up documentaries about people in war-torn countries. That will make you 100% more depressed, unless you’re stone cold and have no heart. But hey, who am I to judge.

So what do I do when I’m stuck in a backslide? I sing some Stevie Nicks, and swap out the word “landslide” for “backslide” and call it a day. Not really.. but I wished that worked! What I do is compare myself to myself. I take the stupid saying “think how bad some people have it”, and change it to “think how bad you have had it”. I think back to the time when I was at my absolute worst, and compare it to where I am. I try not to dwell on how I used to feel, but how much I’ve changed. I think about how much better I’ve gotten, and how much I’ve accomplished.

Of course, this is only what I do and different things work for different people. I mean, it takes diff’rent strokes to move the world, right? Throwing it back and watching old sitcoms can also help with backsliding, or thats what I keep telling myself at least. Anyway, back to what I was saying. Different things work for different people, but remembering a situation that makes you feel proud will never be a bad idea.

Backslides happen to everyone. Take me for example, I’ve been feeling great these last few months, I feel like a new person. I’ve been more productive than ever before, I’m doing good decent in my classes, and I’m stepping up at work. But three days ago I fell off my cloud. I’ve been tired, unmotivated, uninterested. I’ve been detached. My mind, body, and soul came out of alignment. I spent two days impersonating furniture, then today I finally came up for air. I thought about the days when I didn’t think I would make it to the next, when I didn’t want to make it to my 22nd birthday, and I compared those feelings to my current feelings. I don’t think about those things anymore, I don’t even come close, and that makes me proud. I’m proud that I saved myself, and I’m proud to be a survivor. I’m proud to be me.

I’m so cheesy, it’s making me sick right now (Which is very possible because I happen to be lactose intolerant). I’ll cut to the chase so it doesn’t too sappy here. Backsliding is inevitable. It’s going to happen and it’s going to suck, but sliding can be fun. Remember being a kid and sliding down a hill, the joy and exhilaration you felt? You’d immediately race back up that hill. So although you may have backslid, it’s just a slide, you’re not stuck. You can get back up and race back up that hill.

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