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When People Don't Understand the Good Days With Depression

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Those of us living with depression can be good at hiding it. We can seem “normal” during the day but cry at night because we feel too “different” than everyone else. We can have loving families and steady jobs, but still feel utterly useless.

Then there are the actual good times when we’re genuinely happy, maybe even over the top. We might annoy you because we talk too much or laugh too loud. This can make it harder to understand the darkness we live in; however, just because we struggle with depression doesn’t mean we can’t experience joy. Yes, even we have good days.

If we annoy you by our spurts of energy and laugh at every joke or say “good morning” to everyone who walks in the door, it might just be because we haven’t felt this good in a long, long time. We still see you rolling your eyes and whispering to your friends and we try not to let it discourage us. (It does.)

It’s ironic how people who can feel so empty can sometimes be “too much.” Trust me, we get your confusion. At least you don’t have to live in it all the time.

We know how to hide and we know how to pretend, but it’s hard for us to realize life can be good. Sometimes things actually are OK, and we need to recognize that. So if you think we’re acting “crazy,” know we’re just trying to embrace and acknowledge those good moments because we don’t know how long they’ll last.

If you struggle with similar issues, then you know what I’m talking about. You’ve had those days when you ask yourself, “Wait, why am I feeling so happy right now? I thought I had depression.” Yes. It’s confusing.

I’m far from a professional, but I’ve lived with depression for years. I’ve learned it doesn’t have to limit our range of emotions. Every thought and feeling we have is real.

Maybe your story looks similar to mine. If so, I ask you to give yourself permission to enjoy the good days. Don’t let a diagnosis define your joy. Savor your smiles and let go of anything that gets in the way.

And for you “normal” people out there, I ask you try not to judge. Maybe you’re confused by all of the different emotions, but please understand. We never know everything that goes on inside another person’s mind.

Our struggles may be different than yours, but we still need kindness and support. Everyone deserves to have good days every once in a while.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Unsplash image via Alexander Shustov.

Originally published: April 4, 2017
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