Shaun D Griffiths
You may think the worse time was when I was admitted to the hospital and all the drama that fallowed and you would be wrong. I am a being of drama and I am at my most resilient when my back is against the wall. What was worse was what came after the drama had become little more than a memory.
Here’s the thing with depression that I don’t think many people know, it is boring. There were people who I thought were friends and had promised me they would be there for me, but their promised lasted the length of time it took them to say I’m here for you hun. I’m not bitter, if the shoe was on the other foot I would probably react just the same. So going from a full time job to doing nothing more taxing than walking the dog took some time to get used. Little chores became harder and harder, shaving, washing, and housework. Then the dog passed away, I’m not one who believes in soul mates, but if such a thing was true, then that soppy spaniel was mine. I started going out less and less and then the thought of going out seamed an impossible thing. Life became a blur of daytime television and perpetual boredom. Concentration so low that I could no longer read or write, music irritated me and whatever I watched on television I forgot what I was watching once the adverts began. Sleep became a stranger as my mind raced with thoughts of all the bad choices I had ever made. Before me I could only see a sea of tedious monotony.
So I started volunteering at Mind, not something I really wanted to do, sure I was terminally bored, but that was a beast whose nature I knew and there was a strange dull comfort in the misery I was feeling. Little by little I began to change. Taking more care in my appearance, at first to avoid questions about my state of mind and then I began to talk to other volunteers, staff and anyone who cared enough to listen. I talked about my depression, my past and a lot about soap operas and whatever reality show I was obsessing with. In part I think I started volunteering as some kind redemption, to make right all those wrongs I imagined I had coursed right. I wrote a story for the Time to Change project about the time I was in hospital and I was asked to read it in Cardiff. I stood on the stage and I could feel all the respect and support from Mid Powys Mind.
There’s a chance hat one day I will screw up again and I now know I will always have someone there for me. Imagine how tediously monotonous life would be if no one screwed up.