“I brushed my hair today. For the first time in 4 weeks. It was matted and twisted together. It snapped and tore with every stroke. I cried while I washed and conditioned it because I forgot how it felt to run my fingers through it. I brushed my teeth, too, for the first time in a week. My gums bled. My water ran red. I cried over that, as well. When I got out of the shower, I couldn’t stop sniffing my hair and arms. I’ve avoided hugging people for a while because I never smell good. I always smell like I’ve been on bedrest for a week. I have no clean clothes because I’m too tired and sad to wash them.
Depression isn’t beautiful. Depression is bad hygiene, dirty dishes, and a sore body from sleeping too much. Depression is having three friends that are only still around because they have the patience and love of a saint. Depression is crying until there’s no more tears, just dry heaving and sobbing until you’re gasping for your next breath. Depression is staring at the ceiling until your eyes burn because you forget to blink. Depression is making your family cry because they think you don’t love them anymore when you’re distant and distracted. Depression is somatic as well as emotional, an emptiness you can physically feel.
Please be easy on your friends and family that have trouble getting up the energy to clean, hang out, or take care of themselves. And please, please take them seriously if they talk to you about it. We’re trying. I swear we’re trying. See? I brushed my hair today.”