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    Why do we feel bad.
    beautifulbuffalo posted:
    I know depression is an illness but why do we have to feel so bad when we are depressed. My grandkids had a good christmas but I couldn't wait for it to be over. I don't like holidays. I just want these feelings to go away. I don't want to be stressed. I don't want knots in my stomach. I never smile as I'm a very serious person.

    Any ideas.
    thistledown1973 responded:
    First of all this is an extremely difficult time of year. Darkness, relative cold (I live in a place that can get as low as - 60 F), and the relative greed of the season combined with the guilt-ridden pleas for money and food from charities that know they will get more now than any other time of the year make for an extremely uncomfortable and lost feeling. If you already have depression, the incessant "gimme gimme get get get" attitude paired with the "feed the world" songs can make a person go on edge.

    There is an incredible sense of expectation on holidays, that we are supposed to be moved by the religious meanings of the holidays that have been muddled by older and newer traditions. Martha Stewart and Julia Child make us feel like our house has to be picturesque and full of festive home decorations with a huge spread of delectable treats for dozens of guests.

    Really, who has time to hand-illuminate place cards?

    No matter your faith or spiritual path, take it back to the basic commonalities of the holidays. Love, compassion, forgiveness, thankfulness, togetherness, acceptance, peace. It doesn't need to be more than that.

    As a child we were so poor all my mother could afford to give family for gifts was homemade Christmas cookies. We would cut, bake, and paint the cookies with colored/flavored frostings and use candy sprinkes, spending maybe $50 to give gifts to 30 granparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. It's all we had and it was GOOD ENOUGH because it came from the heart.

    If there is a nearby university or college with an experimental greenhouse, or a local nursery that has an open plant area year-round, I recommend you go visit it during a bright part of the day. Walk, sit, smell the flowers in a warm green growing-scented environment while bright light shines on you. Soak up the light most of us are missing this time of year.

    Depression on an organic level is a lack of the chemicals that make us feel good and alert in our brains, and it can be from a depleation (constant strain or hardship that puts us in an worried mental state), or a consistent reduced production (lack of sunlight, genetics, lack of proper nutrition, other medical conditions). It feels bad because it is like physical pain; it is trying to tell you something is out of whack, and like some kinds of physical pain, it can be difficult to locate the source, so many healthcare professionals focus on dealing with the symptoms first, but the root must be eventually be dealt with or it does not improve.

    Why does not smiling have anything to do with being serious? Have you tried smiling at yourself? Look in a mirror, and if you have to, spread your index and middle finger out and prop the corners of you mouth up with your fingers.

    Smiling is not just for fun or happiness, it is a gesture of kindness, approval, support, love, and compassion. Smiling disarms the wary; it can encourage trust and reassurance in someone afraid to reach out. If I smiled at you, it would be to say "you are valued and I welcome you in friendship". Now if I grin, that's me not being serious...there's a huge difference.

    I hope you have a peaceful New Year, BeautifulBuffalo.
    itmatsb responded:
    Have you tried anti-depressants? Depression can be a chemical illness which needs medication. And yes, it can be extremely painful. The pain of depression used to be so terrible for me that I didn't think I could stand to get through the next 10 seconds. At that point I would take xanax to put me to sleep. But anti-depressants took away the depression completely for me. What about you?
    beautifulbuffalo replied to itmatsb's response:
    I do take anti-depressants. Have so for 10 years, When my depression gets kicked up my meds get changed. I see a therapist every 2 weeks. It gets expensive but she keeps me in line. Sometimes I don't know what to talk about. I'm a queit person. I know what you mean
    about the 10 seconds deal. I take Xanax, Cymbalta, Lithium, Loxapine. I'm 49 and no friends. I need a friend to talk to and share my thoughts.
    itmatsb replied to beautifulbuffalo's response:
    So sorry to hear that you are still struggling. Have you tried to get out more? Just volunteering you would meet other people and get a different perspective on life. If you meet someone that you think you might like, ask them to have coffee with you. That could cut down on your expensive therapy visits if you had some friends. Wish you the best.
    beautifulbuffalo replied to itmatsb's response:
    I can't volunteer as I babysit for my grandson of 16 months Tuesday - Saturday. I'm 49 and at this point I will never havce friends. It makes me feel better to medicate myself. I know it's wrong but it gives me a good feeling. I just wish I was dead then I didn't have to worry about anything.

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