“Without the defense of depression the human race would not have survived. By shutting ourselves in this prison we keep out all the dangers and uncertainties that otherwise would overwhelm us. By making every day in the prison the same as the next, we deal only with the bare minimum of issues that we can manage to deal with, and we make sure that nothing new gets in to frighten and stress us. By concentrating on just ourselves we do not have to face what is happening to others. Locked in our prison we can avoid acknowledging that the inescapable disasters that the human race is prone to — death and loss and the tragedies that nature or our own cruelties and stupidities bring upon us. In depression we can give ourselves a breathing space before we confront all this again, or we can keep ourselves safely locked away forever.`” (14)
Depression is about lost selves — and the struggle to regain the self. We are in a perpetual lock down! It is indeed a battle with one’s self to survive – that is why Dorothy Rowe calls depression a prison. We build the walls as a defense to keep us safe till we can combat our demons and find which way out is the best for us. ”
I found all this to be so true in my own life until I admitted that something was very much wrong with what was happening inside of me. I was always tired, anxious and feeling painfully hallowed out inside of me. I truly was imprisoned by my own fears and shame. In time and with work I forced my prison door open as now I had a key–a key that allowed me to see that I didn’t have to stay here. The pain was so great that the only temporary relief was for me to be proactive and get moving. I walked. I walked some more. Everyday I walked. I began to feel like Forrest Gump. And actually, for me, walking was the key that helped me to walk out of the fog. Once my energy level came back, I came into the Fellowship of the Twelve Steps and there began to work on the things that brought me down in the first place. My experience from feeling lost to discovering my real self was all made possible through the working of the spiritual program that we call the Twelve Steps.
—SOURCE: I’ll do it when I feel better. 2013. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville,. Kentucky 40217. (p.76)