bad habits

Mindfulness #5: Creating a Team When You’re Depressed

Our Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction class has come to an end. There were tears and hugs when we said goodbye.

Nine weeks ago we looked at each other with minds that were wary, scared, curious, self-conscious. Today we are Sangha for each other, and we will miss each other. And we will miss our teacher. Today many of us are scared to be without each other. I’m scared.

I wonder whether I’ll keep up my meditation practice, or whether it will wither on the vine. I wonder whether I’ll grow to loathe it – that thing I’m not doing for myself that I know I should do. I wonder whether I’ll keep the progress I’ve made or slide back. I wonder whether I’ll keep progressing.

I wonder whether “it’s worked,” whether I’ve avoided another major episode of depression. And I know the answer isn’t written. Doesn’t exist. I wonder whether I’ll wither again.

“Find yourself a Sangha,” our teacher told us. Find yourself a group to practice with. You need a group. You need a team.

Find yourself a Sangha.

Can I Just Say? #3

Like other people, especially clinically depressed people, I tend to isolate myself when I’m feeling down, which of course makes things worse. But what I really hate is when my depression manages to isolate me while I’m out with friends.

Like when people talk about their dreams (“I dreamed I gave birth to my boyfriend!”), I don’t feel like I can chime in (“I dreamed I drowned in my own blood, vomit, and teeth! Crazy, right?!”).

You might as well tell people that you killed a guy with a trident.