A Lesson: On Depression, Emotional Resilience, and Heartbreaks

“Heard joke once: Man goes to doctor. Says he’s depressed. Says life seems harsh and cruel. Says he feels all alone in a threatening world where what lies ahead is vague and uncertain. Doctor says, “Treatment is simple. Great clown Pagliacci is in town tonight. Go and see him. That should pick you up.” Man bursts into tears. Says, “But doctor…I am Pagliacci.” ― Alan Moore

You know the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover?”

Well, it’s true.

Oftentimes there’s a big difference between what we’re able to decipher about a person, what we see at the surface, and what lies underneath it all. There’s a big difference between appearance and essence.

I’m going to do the obvious here and use me as an example.

There was a time when I was depressed. I had no money, no job… I felt lonely most times, in that bizarre way when you’re waiting for someone to enter your life and cure you of your loneliness. In a way, I’d spend my nights either writing or missing someone I had never even met.

I wrote mostly because I had nothing better to do with my time. I wasn’t expecting to publish anything, I wasn’t expecting anything actually. I just did stuff… built this big, big wall around me, and I never let anyone in.

Of course, at the same time, I was kind of funny. And I loved making people laugh or, at least, smile. And I talked about my dream of becoming a writer as if… it was there, as if I could almost touch it. I spoke with such confidence… it’s really sad, actually… because I wasn’t confident. Not even one bit.

Then things changed, of course. I had had enough, so I made things change. I wrote more, I tried my best, and I found the self-esteem and confidence I had lacked for most of my life. Through writing. That’s the truth.

I guess that what I’m really trying to say is that we need to experience the exact opposite of a thing in order to fully appreciate it. You need to get your heart broken a few times before you truly appreciate someone who’s clearly given the best they have to you. That way you’ll take better care. Spend enough time being all sad and depressed, and you’ll want to make people laugh and smile, so they never experience sadness.

Ever felt like you’re no good,; just stupid, ugly, uninteresting?

Well, you write a blog and try to inspire other artists. So they never lose hope entirely, the way you did. So they gain a bit of confidence, each time they read one of your blog posts. And this, strangely enough, gives you more confidence than any motivational video you’d ever watch.

I make someone smile, and I smile. I make someone laugh, and this makes me laugh too. I inspire someone, and their enthusiasm inspires me to write as well.

The truth is, you always get something back. Yes, you shouldn’t give because you want something back. You should give because it makes you happy.

I wrote about my dark period so many times… here or in my stories, that it no longer affects me. It actually made me stronger.

It made me who I am today. 

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21 thoughts on “A Lesson: On Depression, Emotional Resilience, and Heartbreaks

  1. I loved this. From your writing style to the truth that people who are experiencing depression exert themselves to make others feel happy. I also found that writing was one of my outlets to make me kind of make reason of why I was so empty all of the time. Because sometimes when you can’t see the truth behind why you feel a certain way, it makes everything worse. This was amazing!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Writing is therapy. Underrated, I think. Just writing about how you feel, about certain events, and then to throw that piece of paper away makes you feel better. It shows how simple it is to get rid of bad emotions, I guess.

      Of course, you could burn that piece of paper, if you’re into more dramatic stuff.

      Either way, it helps a lot.

      Liked by 5 people

  2. I feel like you spoke my heart out in this blog post. I write when I’m depressed and it is really helpful. But sometimes it feels like whatever you write is worthless and you’re no good. What if you feel this and cannot write?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with the idea that giving of yourself to help others rewards you, even if you aren’t expecting rewards.
    Before blogging I wrote to others on a peer support forum for mental illness. I still do. The rewards have been enormous.
    Every word you write to another reminds you of what to do to manage your own depression.
    The more you write and share and learn you realise there is no reason to feel ashamed.
    Best of all writing to support others gives you purpose.
    If the depressed man you were saw you as you are today do you think he would be most proud of your blogging success… Or proud of your ability to engage and inspire others?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Doctor says, “Treatment is simple. Great clown Pagliacci is in town tonight. Go and see him. That should pick you up.” Man bursts into tears. Says, “But doctor…I am Pagliacci.”

    -that reminded me of the recent string of celebrity suicides.
    There were a few articles where people say Anthony Bourdain verbally expressed that he wanted to spend more time at home and live as a normal dad.
    But no one ever said, “Sure, go do that. You don’t need to continue traveling and filming for 99% of the year.”

    like you say, “we need to experience the exact opposite of a thing in order to fully appreciate it.”
    People who are very successful might also need to take a step back, when necessary, to catch their breath.

    rip Anthony Bourdain and all others

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Thank you so much for this, it never ceases to amaze me how although we’re all different people living different experiences, these emotions are what connects us, and someone can put into words exactly what you feel or have felt. Thank you for the inspiration :)

    Liked by 2 people

  6. “I make someone smile, and I smile. I make someone laugh, and this makes me laugh too. I inspire someone, and their enthusiasm inspires me to write as well.” — story of my life

    Some took Depression as a joke but you will never really know what could hits u until u are experiencing this state. Seriously speaking it’s hard and u need to be strong to fight this Depression.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Love your blog it made me smile and feel beautiful as a person.. I can relate to your blog and I love when I can relate because then I can feel a little of you in your story.. we should help each other smile I use to blog a lot and was good but lost my passion due to loosing myself but I’m starting to blog again

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I being very honest here, I felt like you were describing me through your past days. I also started writing to kill time. I also felt that I’m a very boring and indifferent person. I also had my heart broken. I laugh a lot to hide my bruises. Somehow I decided to start a blog , because sharing my thoughts makes me feel better. I think it’s healing me, since I can find people like you who survived all these trauma. It made you stronger and it’s preparing me to be stronger. Thanks for sharing your story:)

    Liked by 1 person

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