Hi, Lovelies. How are you all doing? My apologies for being so AWOL lately: I’ve been swamped between work and being just generally exhausted, and it’s left me neglecting the blog. On top of all that, my depression has kicked into overdrive.
Depression is what of my least favorite parts of my mental health. I have a lot of least favorite parts, tbh, but this one is up there. To clarify, I’m not talking about sadness; I’m talking about a fundamental exhaustion and numbness–a profound emptiness that carries a tremendous heaviness.
These are the days I have to sit in the shower to wash myself because I don’t have the energy to stand. The days where my head is so foggy, I can’t fathom the nothingness into somethingness. And, yes, the days where I cannot even get up and make myself a cup of loose-leaf tea.
If you’ve been hear for any length of time, you know Annie loves a good cup of tea. And if you read my post about tea, you know I think loose-leaf teas are the way to go. This is because the teas will have more room to expand and the flavor will be better. Almost always.
All that being said it does take time and energy to fill strainers, steep the tea, and then dispose of the leaves (yay composting) and wash the strainers. There are days where I can’t do all of that because of my depression, and where I’ll reach for a pre-bagged tea which will make me feel icky because of all the added chemicals and such.
So what do we do?
My answer is a simple one:
Prepare for the bad days on the good days.
Yup: that’s right. I have a hoard of pre-filled loose leaf tea bags. I usually keep a 60% caffeinated teas to 40% herbal, and the bags are even compostable so I just chuck ’em in the bin when I’m done. It only takes about five minutes to produce a decent-size stash, put them in an airtight container and I’m set.
What I’ve found is that when I’m able to drink my teas, I feel even just a little bit better. Not like happy, not full of energy. But just a sliver of okayish because “hey, I practiced self care when I felt like I wouldn’t mind getting hit by a bus”. That’s not hyperbole, either.
And while that seems almost too simple, and perhaps silly, I’ve found it really helpful. I don’t reach for these bags when I’m feeling lazy—as we’ve previously concluded that depression does not in anyway equate to or derive from laziness. Instead, I only use these when I’m having a depressive spell and need them.
This doesn’t just apply to teas, either. In the past, I’ve armed myself with a depression emergency kit, which was a box full of photos, cozy socks, tea bags, feel-good movies, books and anything else I could think of that would help me self-soothe. Again, the goal isn’t to feel better, but to break the cycle of depression somehow by doing healthy coping techniques.
It’s not about never having bad days, y’all.
It’s about knowing bad day’s will come, and we’ll be ready when they do.