I posted the following to a Chronic Pain forum and decided to share here as well in case it can help others.
A few days ago I suffered the longest and most intense period of depression in my 24 years living with chronic, phantom pain and disability.
For three nights, when I got home from work I went straight to the bedroom and lay there staring at the ceiling fan until lights out. I’m married, and we have a 3month old son, so my sudden disappearance, that I did not explain at all until I wrote the below to my wife, caused her terrible worry.
I’m not really sure why I decided to share this here. I just hope it is helpful in some way.
I don’t know if it is describable in any conventional way but this is my best way I think I can communicate in my terms. I wish it were more logical for you but there are better things to apologise for than that.
I have nothing to address or resolve with you or anyone other than me. (and possibly not even me).
Clearly you want understanding of what is happening but there is none.
Imagine tripping over and falling into a deep pit, and inside this pit was just you and a storm of negative thoughts and emotions.
You know that the storm will pass, but you see your loved ones looking down into the pit wanting to pull you out. You know the storm will poison them but you cannot communicate whilst you are fighting the storm.
The storm feeds off the negative energy and tries to convince you what it says is genuine, but eventually it begins to pass and forget what genuine emotional worry or doubt you did have.
The storm is you. The storm is like any other, a battle between positive and negative pressure.
You are wanting comfort and closure and things to be addressed, or just knowledge, and you have listed for me almost every possible reason for my downturn.
As a forecaster you were extremely accurate. For the storm was every one of these reasons, but the worst part is we did not know the storm was, and was not real. Whilst it’s ferocious intensity made for such a horrible change in me, spending 3 days inside that pit also did you harm and that part I will always hate or regret.
During it’s worst, yes I was also dealing with my normal pain but it is was insignificant compared to the emotional. Yes I did meditate and this was the Storm’s undoing, however at that time I was not capable of caring about anyone else.. or food or any other desire. Shielding myself away from you and Olly was the only choice I could live with, so once I fell into the Pit I also willingly stayed there.
I have climbed out of it now but don’t think I am saying all is back to normal. I at least now know what negative thoughts may be hiding deep below the surface.
What needs to happen next is healing from any damage done. Me = time, you = I don’t know.
I hate that this happened. And I am very sorry. 🙁
I want to know more about what triggered the Storm. I think it began as always with Pain, then some frustrations at work and a new type of exhaustion once home.
I don’t even remember the next bit but I recall something made me go and lay down. I don’t know anymore if this trigger is even important. I believe psychologists would say it is so I think I will talk to Jemma as she is studying this and I have no fear opening up to her.
Finally I don’t mean to say I am back yet to my normal self but I think I see him on the horizon.
I am sorry for putting through this. I understand how tough it has been on you and I am sad for this.