When you're in it, you don't feel sad. You feel frustrated. That it's taking you so long to do your taxes. Even the dishes. Another head of rotting lettuce rolls into the bin. You feel ashamed. Because your motivation has siphoned off, along with your optimism. You feel scared. How did you end up here? Again. You swore you wouldn't let it get this bad again. Yet here you are. You feel dumb. You didn't see the signs. You thought you were stronger. Now you're in it again, and you feel so weak.
Sometimes a realization untangles the knot. More often than not, it's time. The cords relax and your energy seeps back. You have a few good days. Sunshine filters through gauzy curtains. Your task list shows movement. Finally. But the guilt still hangs on you like an ill-fitting sweater. The wasted time. You text your friends, hoping they don't feel neglected.
When you're in it, it's hard. When you're almost out, it's just as tricky. Take off too fast and your muscles seize. So walk slow, breathe deep, and stretch your legs. That's more than enough for today.
The Lord is like a father to his children,
tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
For he knows how weak we are;
he remembers we are only dust.
– Psalm 103:13-14
The angel of the Lord came back a second time and touched him and said, "Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you."
– 1 Kings 19:7