themighty logo

The Everyday Task Depression Keeps Me From Doing

Depression is exhausting. No seriously. In a way I can’t seem to describe to those around me. I will have bursts of energy which are mainly used to drive carpools for my kids or perhaps pick up a small number of groceries. I make it to therapy and to a select handful of appointments I schedule. But beyond that, I am struggling to do much of anything — especially cooking.

Let me preface this with: I used to love to cook. I want to enjoy it again. I think about it lots. I have Pinterest boards full of recipes to try. I follow several Facebook groups that center around cooking. I have family members with whom I live who get hungry every couple of hours. But for some reason, I just can’t do it. I want to, and I feel extremely guilty that it isn’t happening.

But when push comes to shove, my exhaustion and being overwhelmed are keeping me out of the kitchen. Our repertoire is beyond tiring, we assemble a few simple things, eat out here and there and then graciously accept the meals my mom makes for us (our healthier nights).

This has been going on for several years now. And it hurts me inside when my kids ask, “What’s for dinner?” and I know the answer is not changing. I have opened a cookbook or two over the past few weeks and even think about picking out a recipe to make, but then I imagine the energy that would be needed to follow through and I just can’t get there.

I am not trying to make excuses for the way my family eats, I am merely trying to explain to myself and to those around me (or those with friends or family struggling like I do), that even just standing over the stove, reading a recipe or chopping up some veggies, can be daunting tasks that require more than I can summon.

And I am going to try to have more patience with myself. And maybe, just maybe, I will try to work on building up the necessary energy and resolve to get back into the kitchen — eventually.

Understanding my limitations is not easy, by any stretch of the imagination. But I am working on learning to accept, if not embrace, that this is my current situation.

Getty Images photo via MatiasEnElMundo