Working Cures My Depression

This week has been emotionally hard for me. I have some personal things going on which have contributed to that, but this post isn’t about those things. It’s work-related, so I’m going to focus on the work-related things that have been difficult, and how I’ve learned to get through them.

I started a new part-time job this week. I’m officially a Retail Merchandiser for Hallmark. I don’t work in a Hallmark store, but I do re-supply Hallmark products to other stores that sell them.

I’ve mentioned in previous posts about my struggle in applying for a part-time job. Our family could use the extra money, which is the only reason I was looking. I don’t want to work. I want to write, and chase this dream. Looking for a job felt like I was failing, like I was taking backward steps when all I want to do is run forward. But we don’t always get what we want.

So, I had my first day of training. It wasn’t terrible. But by the time I left, depression was settling in. It hit me that I was stocking shelves at WalMart. I came home to an empty house (Kasey had already left for work), and I just wanted to cry. I tried to do some writing, but the words on the screen just swam in front of my eyes. I couldn’t get past this feeling that my life was playing a cruel joke on me, and I was never going to accomplish anything worthwhile.

I got nothing done that night. I watched Supernatural on Netflix for about 7 straight hours. When Kasey finally got home after midnight, I completely broke down. It wasn’t pretty.

I got up yesterday morning, and the only thing that had changed was that I was fully rested. My emotions were still roiling. The depression was still there.

After Kasey left for work, I began working on putting myself back together. I took a long, hot shower, and spent some time pampering myself. I got focused, and got out my computer. I learned an important lesson back in September while dealing with my query letter rejections. Feeling sorry for myself accomplishes nothing. Getting back into my story and pushing forward is the only way I know of to combat these feelings of failure and uselessness.

So last night I got back into it. I began chapter 16, which was a shift in the story and took some time to sort out, but I’m happy with the 1,100 words I put down. I worked for a couple of hours on my freelance writing application, which you can read more about here in yesterday’s post. Productive work chases away my depression and helps me to feel like a person again.

The emotions are still there. It still makes me sad that I’m working a dead-end job when it does absolutely nothing to further the career I want. The personal issues are still there, and I’m working on those too. But I’m not spiraling anymore. I know what I want, and I’m going to continue chasing it, no matter how long it takes. And when the depression strikes, I’ll deal with it the only way I know how: getting work done.

Talk to me in the comments. How do you deal when depression strikes?



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