Depression is Real
I grew up unaware of clinical depression. I thought it wasn’t real. When someone would say he was depressed, it would be from someone who was moping over a heartache or sulking after getting grounded. I thought depression was an emotion that you could brush away.
In 2013, I was in for a rude awakening. In September last year, a dear friend of mine committed suicide. After having found out through an email, I was in shock and in denial for days. I had just seen her 2 months before then. I had the pleasure of meeting her baby girl, the newest addition to her now brood of 3 lovely children. It was a day well spent in her cozy home; moms happily chatting, kids busy playing. No signs of trouble, no lingering farewells. To quote a line from the song “Fire and Rain”, a song that now haunts me, “But I always thought that I’d see you again.”
I couldn’t understand how such a lovely woman – kind, generous, caring, happy, with a loving family – would commit suicide. I never thought that someone so strong and well-loved could secretly battle postpartum depression, and lose.
I will never see my friend again. Like her family and friends, I am learning to accept that I will never fully understand what had happened. My heart aches for her husband and children who are slowly moving forward and getting used to the new normal.
I write this post to begin my journey to understanding depression. I hope to let other people know that depression is real, and it is very frightening and powerful. But if brought out of the dark and into the light, with the help of others, it can be beaten.