So it all started last October when I found myself hurled in to a depression I’d never felt before. It was now a month in to term and up until that point I couldn’t have felt happier: I was studying what I loved, I had met some wonderful people who were quickly becoming close friends, and I was loving every second of my new found independence. I felt invincible. On reflection this was most probably another symptom I had failed to spot in the moment, but at that point I had no reason to. At the time the elation felt genuine and so very justified by the circumstances that it raised no suspicion whatsoever. Then it hit me. I started to fall in to a place of darkness and isolation at an alarming rate; each day waking up feeling more and more distant from the rest of the world. Friends became strangers, hobbies became burdens, and passion for life itself began to die away. I couldn’t make any sense of it, and amongst it all this was one of the hardest things to come to terms with.
The strange thing was there was a certain familiarity about the situation. It’s no secret that I’ve suffered from depression before, having spent 2 years enduring a crippling condition that left me physically and emotionally fatigued on a daily basis. There were good days and bad, but the simple fact was that the majority of time I didn’t have the energy left in me to be happy. I think perhaps it was the persistent pain that really took the greatest toll on my mental wellbeing, and I was nothing but grateful that I began to recover shortly after finishing my A-levels. There were definite parallels between how I felt then and how I was feeling now, but still I was left with so many questions. What had triggered the depression this time? Why was this all happening so suddenly? It was frightening. I had lost all sense of control and even the memories of how content I had felt only a matter of days ago became fleeting. It was obvious something was wrong, but it would be a little while yet before I could begin to take steps in trying to understand what exactly was going on.