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Today’s Thought Bubble: A Bad Day Comes to Visit

Today started out all wrong in all ways possible. For one, I slept on my side wrong, which kinda made my arm and neck hurt a wee bit. I woke up all tired, despite the fact I slept for much longer than I usually do. Secondly, I had a headache and a sore throat, most likely from being overly tired the day before. And lastly, I wasn’t doing too good emotionally either. I was feeling a sense of trepidation and dread, and I could feel my Dark Night hovering, waiting to pounce. And very sneakily she did come in….complete with the doubts, insecurities and irrational thoughts that would not be quelled no matter how much I tried. The thoughts were swirling but I couldn’t make sense of them.

So I did what I knew I had to do: I cried. I cried until my eyes hurt and my head felt swollen beyond description. At first it hurt so bad, it felt as if a vise was squeezing my heart until I was left breathless. But over time, the hurt dissipated and I felt like I could breathe again.

I realized that once again, I was overthinking things, taking on more than I should and allowing myself to get sucked in to things I shouldn’t get sucked into. I guess even though I am consciously trying to kick the habit of doing that, I still fall every once in a while.

I’ve talked a lot about this Dark Night in the past few weeks, and I guess, for those who are asking, I can fill you in better. In the not so distant past, I came face to face with my inner demons and had to make amends with them. During this period of depression, I was at a loss for who and what I was. As I became whole again, I found bits and pieces of wisdom that allowed me to become a better me. While I may have dealt with that episode in my life, I don’t think I will ever be free from ever feeling sad or lost from time to time. The difference now, however, is that I know how better to respond to it. My friend asked me once why I called it a Dark Night of the Soul. And I told her that that’s exactly what it felt like. Like you are trapped in a dark night where you are helpless and lost and in indescribable pain. In a post I wrote about it before,  I said that it wasn’t until I came up close and personal to depression did it make sense to me. I honestly used to dismiss it as a sign of weakness and just plain illogical.

However, as I said in that old post,

If you ask me now to describe depression, I can say it is truly like, borrowing Thomas Moore’s description of sadness, depression and troubles that come into our lives, a dark night of the soul. It felt to me like one day I woke up and the sun was gone. In it’s place was a dark shadow, hanging heavily and ominously over every waking hour. Every day in that period of my life was a long, dark, starless night”.

If I were to give you a picture of what my depression was like, I would tell you to imagine a dark, heavy cloud in the sky, just like those sudden rain clouds that come out of nowhere on a bright day sky. It suddenly covers the brightness around and casts a greyness on everything. In the core of the cloud is a dense darkness where not even a sliver of light can pass through. The rest of the cloud is also dark, but of varying shades of gray.

During that dark night of my soul, I could not think or see straight. I stopped being who I was. In the midst of it, it was like standing in the eye of a storm. There was an eerie calmness while everything around spun like mad. The thing is, that calmness was only around when I was curled up in bed, pulled away from the world around me. Then, I finally understood what people with depression were saying. I started to realize it really was more than just mindset, or attitude.

Today I knew it was just a bad day and that I had it in me to understand what this feeling of a hovering darkness needed. As such, I tried my best to be still and remember that true happiness in more than just bright sunshine. After all, there is beauty in darkness, too. I end the day on a happier note knowing that I was where I needed to be today.

Read the full post of Dark Nights of the Soul here.

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