Wrestling the black dog

I don’t really know why they call depression the black dog, I don’t feel like I’ve been taken over by a dog, black or otherwise and I’m certainly not wrestling with it, I have nor the time or inclination to do anything quite so energetic. It’s more like I’m being smothered with a heavy grey blanket that stops any joy and sunlight from getting in, deprives you of oxygen and in turn energy and directs every thought you have into something negative and wondering whether the world would be a better place without you in it. 

I know know there are many people that don’t understand what it’s like to feel like this. I have family and friends that have trouble understanding, but there are also many people out there that do and a lot of them feel alone and very isolated. Which quite honestly, is the worst place a depressed person can be. I only hope that if I write about it, others won’t feel so alone or stigmatised.

I’ve suffered from depression all of my adult life, however I seem to cope pretty well until I have a fairly serious “situational crisis” (as people in the biz like to call it), or I’m sleep deprived. Which isn’t great for someone like me who works permanent night shift. Currently I’m an extremely sleep deprived state. (Also dealing with a few situational crisis, but I won’t bore you with the details). I didn’t get to sleep Wednesday before work and yesterday I spent the majority of the day driving the kids to and from school and work experience, a total of 4 hours driving. I also took calls from the school and therapists, which left me a grand total of two hours in which to sleep. Then headed back to work. Well, last night at work didn’t go as smoothly as I’d have liked and I turned into the irrational teary monster again. I was told I shouldn’t come to work if I’m tired. Well, I’m fucked then. As I’m always bloody tired. Any working mother, single or otherwise gets tired! Knowing that I won’t get much sleep today due to the fact that my youngest has a pupil free day, I’ve had to cancel work. No work, means no pay, which means more stress, which means more tears and less sleep. A cycle which is hard to break. So it’s off to the doctors for me this morning, before I get myself into a right state and end up rocking in a corner somewhere.

So if you know someone that wrestles with the black dog, the grey blanket, or whatever else people like to call the depression and you haven’t heard from them in a while. Make sure they’re okay, give them a call and let them know they’re not alone.

8 thoughts on “Wrestling the black dog”

  1. Wendy I hope you are going to be ok and you manage some sleep over the next few days and get some rest whilst your off ❤️

      1. Hope you do get some well deserved rest I can only imagine how sleep deprived you are. Take care and look after yourself Wendy. See you on the hop at work.

  2. Take care of yourself Wendy, get some much needed sleep and hopefully you’ll feel more human in a couple of days. If you don’t take care of yourself no one else will. If you need anything let me know, I’m working over the weekend. X

  3. Sleep deprivation is a common issue for hospital workers. I have also been through depression. Being on call for a busy hospital laboratory also deprives you of sleep. I have had the on call situation and the night shift. At least with the night shift you don’t have to worry about being called in. When I was doing on call, I would hardly ever finish at the 11pm end of shift , more like 12pm, and then be on call until 7am. Then I would be called out 2 or three times a night and have to start work again at 1pm.
    With night shift
    I generally get to bed about 8am and on a good day will sleep until 2pm. Then after a stint of night shifts, I will have what I call a crash, where I’m just so tired I will fall asleep on the couch about 6pm. Day shift would then follow after a three day break.

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