Every day I wake up with fresh hope that today will be better. I will read and write and make good use of my time. Of course, most evenings I am struggling to continue. But the magic of a new day arrives and I try again. I mean, how hard can it be? Everyone else manages to cope. So I wake up with the belief that today will be a good day; today I'll be productive and happy and nothing will get in the way of that. I have to face every day with this attitude as otherwise everything becomes too much for me to bear. In this way, I deal with the depression when it comes each evening, but I only deal with one day's worth, not an accumulation. I don't think I could cope if every day I woke up I had to deal with all that came before it as well.This is an extract of what I wrote in my freewriting yesterday morning. I continued like this for fifteen minutes (ie, until my arm ached). I am not sharing this with you for you to feel sorry for me or to be shocked at how optimistic I can be. I am sharing it with you so you can understand how I live my life - day to day, moment to moment. This is what it is like for me every morning. When I wake up I have to have this mindset, or I would sink into depression. As someone who has been there, done that, let me tell you that it is not fun and not a mental place I ever want to be in again.
I can't vouch for everyone else living with M.E. and the multitude of other chronic illnesses and disabilities, but this is how I cope. I don't feel brave. I don't feel strong. When I am crying my soul out on my boyfriend's shoulder every night I feel like a failure (in fact, I believe he is the strong one for dealing with it). But every morning I have to believe that today will be better, today I won't be in excruciating pain and exhaustion by the end of the day. I have to believe because I don't have any other option. Okay, I know I do have an option. But which would you choose - to feel the worst you've ever felt times ten, permenantly; or to feel capable for a few hours each day? Because that is the choice I'm faced with. And, as I've said, I've tried the first one. Now I would do almost anything to stop myself going there again. So I choose to try. Because I must. Because I have to hope.
I even wrote about that yesterday as well:
I have given up in the past but at some point I always try again. It is the only logical way I can see to move forward in life. Going backwards or standing still is not an option for me. I have to have hope that I can change things and that change will happen. Without that hope I have nothing. That may seem like an exaggeration but for someone with depression it is not. Depression sucks out everything about you and you become a shell, sinking deeper and further away from everything you had.
I just wanted to share this with you today to help you understand. Please feel free to ask questions and I'll be happy to answer them.