In one of the first few sessions with Dr Stephen-Claude Hyatt, he asked me to complete a questionnaire to ascertain where I was on the depression scale. I can’t remember the exact score, but I remember it to be pretty bad. I still didn’t quite get the significance of how depressed I was and how it might affect me then. I kept thinking, depression? I’m “depressed” every now and then, its curable by eating tubs and tubs of ice cream for a week….
I guess many of us feel low in mood every now and then, for a week or so. But once this feeling prolongs, it could become overwhelming for the mind and body, resulting in depression, or major depressive disorder. Some people get bipolar disorder or other variations. I remember googling for “depression” after one session. I didn’t intend to do extensive research about depression, but I wanted to make sure what I was reading was accurate. So I went through website after website, book after book, to comprehend what depression was, and what the consequences are.
After a few hours perusing articles, I got my “ah-ha” moment: “SH!T, I have ALL those symptoms, WTF???!!!!”
-exhibiting very low mood, pervading into all aspects of life
-inability to experience pleasure in activities previously enjoyed
-ruminate over thoughts and feelings of worthlessness, inappropriate guilty, regret, helplessness, hopelessness, self hatred
-may have psychosis: including delusions, hallucinations, usually unpleasant
-poor concentration or memory loss
-withdrawal from social activities and situations, people
-reduced sex drive
-insomnia, waking very early and cannot get back to sleep, difficulty in falling asleep
-hypersomnia or oversleeping
-fatigue, headaches, digestive problems and other physical pains
-decrease in appetite, resulting in weight loss
-lethargic or agitated behaviour
The pin dropped. I was depressed. Pretty severely depressed as well. Great!
(Apparently, if you exhibit 5 or more of these symptoms / behavioural changes for a prolonged period of time, seek professional help because you might be depressed…)