Depression Imposter Syndrome

Often, when I’m standing in the shower making the most important decisions of my life (i.e. staring off into space) I have helpful thoughts, and not so helpful thoughts. Today I had a thought that comes back to me often. Maybe I don’t have depression and anxiety – maybe I’m just lazy?” My mind loves that one, and usually just runs with it. The depression is just being tired. The anxiety is just not sucking it up and dealing with the world like everyone else.

But then little thoughts start jumping in with proofs. Reasons why maybe I am actually depressed and anxious. Things like…

  • The pile of meds I take everyday
  • The enormous pile of meds that weren’t effective
  • The Psychiatrists I see on a regular basis seem to think I an afflicted
  • My personal therapist, who’s been in the deepest reaches of my mind and assures me that, yes, I have some serious issues
  • The Care team at the Treatment Resistant Depression clinic – for even seeing me
  • .. and their prescription of Ketamine
  • .. and their recommendation and assistance in fitting me with a Vagus nerve stimulator (VNS)
  • .. and their medication prescriptions working in concert with my regular Psychiatrist
  • The tremor in my hands and legs from the most effective medication I’m on
  • That VNS, which is surgically implanted in my chest and neck. It gives me a zap every five minutes for 30 seconds
  • Two rounds of Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)
  • One round of Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)
  • The feelings of failure, dread, and hopelessness
  • CBT, DBD, IOT, PHP, MAOI, and every other acronym I can think of

You know what? That list doesn’t matter. You don’t need to prove it to yourself. If you have depression, you have depression. If you have anxiety, you have anxiety. Depression imposter syndrome feels very real to me, but I look at the evidence and feel how I’m feeling, and I’m assured it is real. Which is actually depressing, but that’s a different blog post. Don’t let those little shower (or elsewhere) thoughts try to impact your disease. They’re just thoughts going through your head, getting washed down the drain as they continue on.

Officially Disabled?

My application for Social Security Disability has been approved. The fact that it took one month to the day for them to approve it tells me it’s fairly obvious to those who make decisions. Don’t have the details yet, but it will absolutely help us financially. I haven’t talked money much on the blog, but my wife and I were making good money in the tech and the health care industries. When I lost my job, it effectively cut the family income in half. Which has caused some stress. Disability won’t really make a huge change, but any at all will help.

On the other hand, it’s hit me fairly hard. Harder than I expected it to. I’m government certified disabled. It sounds like a permanent affliction, and the reality of it isn’t doing much to argue that point. It’s had me surfing for jobs online, and my career just doesn’t have anyone who works part time. I can’t handle full time yet. The fact that I was looking is progress, as a few months ago that would have sent me into a death spiral just thinking about it. Honestly, it was a pointless act, looking at jobs. Not only do I have the half time limitation, but so much of my technical knowledge has simply vanished. I would have to come up with a completely different use for my skills — and before you say consulting, think about the social and financial skills required for that.

VNS is going fine, had to back down to 1.0, or therapeutic level. It was just too irritating, and it made headaches feel worse. Still has some irritation, but more annoying than painful. Still doing Ketamine once a month and it’s something I really look forward to. For about an hour I’m not me and I’m not depressed. You know that viral video of the phone falling down the stairwell? That’s what it’s like. Only different.

I added that stupid “Positive” section last post and I guess I have to keep up with it. I’d say it might be DBT. I’m not knowingly using tools yet, but when I have to report in I can usually find a couple that I did use. Happy?

Don’t want to follow up with a negative section but I can’t think of anything else positive. Sorry, not sorry.

What positives have your accumulated this week? Throw a comment down below!