MDD and the absence of sleep can amplify the depressive symptoms and make the world around you less tolerable.Tweet
Lack of sleep
For the best part of a week and a half, I have lived among the millions of people who experience the better bulk of their lives in the wee hours of the morning. Their reasons for being night dwellers undoubtedly vary from person to person. Maybe it’s an accumulation of stress, work requirements or even a mental disorder. Yet others, known as night hawks, live in the darkness voluntarily.
While night hawks claim to function best when the world is shrouded in darkness, I take no pleasure in it. I especially detest my own personal darkness, a dark that has overridden my ability to sleep, granting me one or two hours a night. In my waking hours, I have been consumed by the heavy dread of depression. This depressive episode has been one of the longest and most painful to date. I have ventured outside of my home only a few times since it settled in unannounced.
One thing I have noticed about this particularly troubling bout of sadness is how mentally weak I feel. I have seldom had the depressive symptoms overpower me to the degree where the simplest tasks seemed daunting. No doubt the sleep deprivation played a role.
Working its way from the inside out, depression knew exactly what it was doing. It systematically robbed me of my confidence, my compassion and my ability to write. Simply put, I didn’t care. Missing out on some normally enjoyable obligations is something I rarely do, however, this time it really didn’t matter. It was as though my emotional centre was stricken with sickness and then flat-lined. I was incapable of feeling guilty for staying home; guilt is my typical response to missing out on things, but I wasn’t able to feel anything, to be honest.
I’m quickly learning that major depressive disorder and the absence of sleep have devastating consequences. It’s as though a mental anesthesiologist injected me with the inability to feel any emotion whatsoever – well, except extreme sadness.
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