Just one wrong step…….


Depression is so much a part of my life and my family it may as well be another relative. Not so great Uncle Anguish.
I have seen it touch so many, including myself, with its icy cold fingers of desolation.I have on many occasions thought that the world would be much better off without me and me with it. I have fought through and been glad I picked myself up and kept going, only to be thrown back into the dank, dark depths once again. I have seen people I love struggle just to get out of bed each day because the fight to make sense of it all just gets to be too much.I have cried so many tears, begged so many unseen deities and looked for signs, anything to tell me it would be all be ok.

The one thing I found comfort in is my belief that I am a good….no…. great mom. I stayed home even though it was tough financially. I played games, made crafts, sang songs and hosted play dates. My kids never did without. They were hugged, kissed, danced with, sang to and told how very wonderful they are. I volunteered at their school, ran myself ragged once I was back to work to never miss a sport, music recital, play or award. Whatever my boys did, I was there. I never yelled at them, never spanked or demeaned them. My husband and I never swore or fought in front of them. We played together, traveled together and loved one another. I swore my boys would never feel the crushing sadness I had felt. I was foolish and oh so very wrong. Foolish because I thought I had any control over it. Wrong because it crept in when I wasn’t looking. Uncle Anguish decided he wanted my baby and the evil, sneaky bastard taught him to hide it. I suspected, of course I did. I knew the signs, but when I asked, delicately so as not to injure, I was assured by him that he was fine. I worried kids at school were bullying him or later that drugs were involved. I tried to help him by giving advice on socializing better but now I wonder if that was taken as criticism and did more harm than good. I tried just making his life as easy as possible but he pulled farther and farther away. I tried being firm, establishing rules, guidelines and good morals but I felt I was losing the fight.

No! Not him. My son! My boy! My baby! These words screamed inside my head. I was spiraling down the rabbit hole and I thought it may be my final trip.

Then we faced it head on. We dealt with the anger, the denial the hurt.So many conversations. So many tears and talks. So many attempts to get through.

So here we are. Some times it seems like we will be just fine, but others, I see the long road ahead and its almost to much to bear.Some days I feel like I am looking up from the bottom of the rabbit hole while others I feel like I am commanding an army to fill it in.

They talk about the worst pain a woman can experience being childbirth. I would give birth three times a day if it meant I never had to experience emotional separation from my children again. Nothing can ever prepare you from the heartache of suddenly discovering your teenager is keeping secrets and suffering while you are in the dark. Nothing can prepare you to fight for your family. Nothing can prepare you for the demons you fought your whole life coming to claim what you love the most. The ones you would lay down your life to protect. Trust me, not so great Uncle Anguish is not a relative you ever want to have at your dinner table.


9 thoughts on “Just one wrong step…….

  1. What a beautiful, heartbreaking, painfully honest post. I suffer from depression, as well, and so do my children. Like you, I have seen the signs in them many, many times. Like you, I have felt that heart-rending pain whey they have pulled away from me – and when I have pulled away from them – when depression has taken us. But unlike you, I was unable to get help dealing with it. Today, my children are all adults, and, just like I do, they go through mind-numbing bouts with depression that it seems nothing can stop. Sometimes, the only saving grace is a phone call, either from me to them, or from them to me – usually, out of the blue. My daughter and I half-heartedly joke about having a psychic connection because of that. Only one of my children takes medication for the condition.

    Thank you for sharing such an intimate and painful part of your life. Those of us who have to deal with what you refer to as “Uncle Anguish” can benefit greatly from seeing that we are not alone.

    • Thank you Holly. It has been hard to open up but I am finding it helps. You/we are definitely not alone even though it often feels like it. The upside of talking about it is that other people open up and share their stories. It breaks my heart to hear that your children inherited this awful affliction too. As mothers we just want the best for our kids and there is nothing worse than that feeling of helplessness when they are hurting and you can’t take it away. At least you are all able to support each other in your low points. Sometimes that makes all the difference in the world. Suffering alone is so much worse.

  2. ((((Canadian Girl))) Hope you don’t mind that hug. Sometimes, a hug is the only response a person can give. From one Canuck to another…

  3. So well put. As a mother, diagnosed with clinical depression, you have touched on one of my deepest fears. My child is still quite young and very happy to all appearances, but I shudder to think of what might lay ahead of her if she is destined to travel a similar road. The eloquence of your line, “Nothing can prepare you for the demons you fought your whole life coming to claim what you love the most” gives me goosebumps. Lots of love and understanding/empathy is the first step to getting through it together. 🙂

    • In all honesty Sara I never thought my kids would fall victim to this . Both were happy, happy little kids. It breaks my heart but hopefully together we will be ok. It’s only when it’s hidden that it takes over.
      I will keep you and your daughter in my heart and hope and pray she is luckier than us.

  4. I have had “Uncle Anguish” at my dinner table, many times, with many family members, could have easily been myself included ~ It took years to cut him loose ~ Now, I just don’t sit at the dinner table any more ~ Onward and Upward. Best Wishes Crystal. Love & Light. Namaste.

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