When the Dementors Strike

The struggle of mental illness
  1. Many days/weeks/months of my life go off without a hitch. Life is good. Or at least okay. Or at least tolerable.
  2. I deal with good news, bad news, stress, anxiety, happiness, sadness, excitement, success, failure, and 1000 other emotions or situations pretty well in those days/weeks/months.
  3. Then I'll be minding my own business on a calm, sunny day when all of the sudden clouds appear. Out of nowhere. But it's just clouds. No big deal. The sun was getting too bright anyways. Clouds are fine.
  4. The clouds may just last a few hours. Maybe a couple days at most. But then the sun comes back and everything is fine.
  5. Until the clouds come back again. Maybe the next day, the next week, or the next month.
  6. But this time it's more than just overcast. There is thunder. There is lightning. A storm is coming.
  7. The rain begins. The wind is terrible. All is chaos. But everything is still fine! I can weather the storm. I'm strong enough. This is not a big deal. I'm sure the storm will pass quickly.
  8. But the storm doesn't pass. It only gets worse. Because they arrive.
  9. Dementors
  10. "They infest the darkest, filthiest places...they glory in decay and despair."
  11. "They drain peace, hope, and happiness out of the air around them."
  12. My good thoughts, my happiness, my coping mechanisms, my right mind...seem to vanish once the Dementors start their kiss.
  13. I'm in a state of constant grumpiness, annoyance, and bitterness towards people and things that normally bring me joy.
  14. I feel darkness. Sadness. Loneliness. Emptiness. And feel like I won't be happy again.
  15. When all hope seems lost I always manage to gather the strength to unleash a Patronus.
  17. Pottermore says my Patronus is a salmon. (Ha! A fish!) But I kinda like it. But anyways..
  18. My real world Patronus may be the warm embrace of my wife, a kiss from one of my daughters, a talk with a close friend, a glowing email about the great job I'm doing from a colleague or my boss
  19. The Dementor leaves. Sometimes quickly. Sometimes gradually.
  20. The Patronus scares them away...but the Dementor is always there. I do my best to do the right things for my head to ensure they stay away for awhile. But if I'm not careful..the Dementor returns. Sometimes a Patronus helps...other times not so much.
  21. I will get through this and keep the demons away. At least for awhile. That is the cycle I live with.
  22. But they are always close. If I'm not careful and don't live my life with care and healthy habits they will return. I fear that one day I will not be able to conjure the Patronus. But I have no intention of letting them win.
  23. Depression sucks.