I saw the doctor yesterday. Normally when people ask, “how are you doing?” I answer, “Fine thanks!” But not here. My doctor is one of the people I tell the truth to. So she asks, and I tell her. “Not great. I’m super depressed, and I’m tired all the time, and I put on about ten pounds because all I want to do is eat and sleep.” She looks at the chart, checks my numbers, and then looks back at me. I know what she’s looking for. My diagnosis is in there: Major Depressive Disorder. She nods. Then she looks again. She’s looking at the weight they recorded for me. Then she smiles and looks back at me.
“You’re normal.” She says. I blink, confused. Uh, did she not hear what I said?
“You have a toddler. It’s very normal to be tired, and depressed. And given your disorder, the feelings you have, you’re normal. It’s all normal. I wouldn’t worry.”
Huh…No doctor has ever really told me that in such a way before. And yet, in the way she explained it, it was exactly the way I needed to be told about it. These feelings are normal. And they’ll pass. I’m okay. I’m normal.
I left feeling better, albeit a bit deflated. I guess I had expected something more, bigger. Questions about self harm, questions about needing medication, all that standard practice. But I’d been seeing this doctor a long time. And she knows me pretty well, I think. And she gave it to me straight, exactly what I needed to hear. And you know what, guys? I feel better. I feel like if this is normal, then there’s no reason I can’t handle it. I got this. Depression lies, but my doc, she knows what’s up.