“I found that with depression, one of the most important things you could realise is that you’re not alone.” ~Dwayne Johnson

Did you ever bow down to your mind demons? I have… but that experience taught me the best lifetime-lesson.

My life was not a fairytale. But fortunately, my fight was never for bread and butter. 

I had every means to suffice my materialistic desires. I had beautiful people around in the form of friends and family.

But the ironical truth is I was alarmingly sad with no one knowing it. I had droll people around to laugh with but no one to share my gloomy secrets. My outer world was full of light but my inner world was pitch dark.

Unable to recognize the cause, I couldn’t express.

A brute force struck my head hard now and then. The occasional was turning into chronic breathlessness. I was deserted in the crowd continuously losing my feelings.

Life was asking some tough answers, but my restless mind could answer none.

Not that I didn’t think of doc-visit. But which doctor — was always in question as I was unable to classify the category under which my problem falls.

The idea to share with someone would soon raise questions — Which person? What would I explain?

There were many apprehensive dilemmas consuming my head elevating my problem’s intensity. I ignored them all for some time but each elapsing moment was not curbing but exasperating my disorientation.

Did I seem so normal to my loved ones or they dumb? Am I over-expecting? Have I become a useless attention seeker?

Yes… all of this was bruising my mind — the bruises no one saw.

Yes… I finally consulted a psychiatrist.

It felt like a hapless victim when the doc diagnosed me with persistent depressive disorder — a  type of depression.

Mental health awareness — far away from the educated…

My suffering could have been diagnosed earlier and averted. But for the lack of mental health awareness in many including me, what I only knew was a mentally ill person is mad.

Discussing mental health problems is still a social stigma in most parts of the planet. Moreover, ignorant people use the word depression so often that the ones who are suffering from it cannot address it.

It lays the foundation for a quandary for the one facing it. People are unable to open up about their mental wounds.  Even if they try to express, their words are trespassers to people’s ears.

As a result, mind demons never allow the covered wounds to heal.

Even the anti-depressants couldn’t revive my feelings…

The prescribed pills were more of sedatives and the only positive I could extract — there were no more sleepless nights. But again, I dozed off irregularly for an unusually long period, sometimes twelve hours at a stretch. 

It was all bleak with no sense of recovery. And in case you don’t know:

Happiness is a feeling. So literally I was losing the feeling of happiness.

I was reduced to mere existence. Whenever I  knocked on the sweet-memory door, it never opened. My condition worsened!

A boon in disguise — the road to recovery…

In my days of depression, Jaundice attacked my liver. Thank God it was not a mental problem; it had apparent symptoms.

And what turned out to a big blessing was— A liver infected with jaundice does not allow to take antidepressants.

Nowhere to run, the effects of discontinuing the antidepressants were unbearable in one word. My room was my abandoned world till the time the short-term side effects subsided.  

But after then:

Many things changed; but this time for good, for a change.

How did I beat the blues?

When jaundice got cured, one fine morning (without the sedative effects of anti-depressants) led the foundation for my beautiful beginning. The euphoric freshness I had not felt for a long time, stated enough reasons to make me quit those pills forever.

I became curious to find natural ways to unlock the doors of happiness and to revive my lost feelings.

Meditation was my miraculous cure! I started with the traditional approach Mindful Meditation; didn’t know there are other techniques as well.

Not as simple as it sounds, I felt nothing but drowsy, in the initial days.

It was taking a toll on my patience but I knew it’s my last resort. I continued for a week to reach a mind-state I never experienced before.

That positive feeling is difficult to express in words. It was profoundly magical.

And thereon… I started reviving as a bigger and better individual. The biggest lesson which meditation taught me is Happiness is nowhere but in the awareness of the present moment.

Having said, it’s not my mind is all over from depression but one thing is for sure:

Depression is not all over my mind either. And that’s only because my soul is not a captive to my mind anymore. I am a free, blissful being now.

I don’t fight with my negative thoughts anymore to provoke remorsefulness. I have realized positivity and negativity are just the two sides of a coin. And we need to accept every feeling gracefully.

Strong advice to people facing mental problems…

People who never faced a mental problem cannot initiate the discussion about your mental health, for a simple reason: They don’t know how it feels.

So let us stop expecting and act by ourselves. Mental health is not a taboo, let us talk about it as normally as viral fever. Let’s initiate to create awareness!

This piece was originally published on Pick the Brain