I Might Be Depressed

I Might Be Depressed
not interested
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Stock image of a down negro. Not sure why this is so funny to me

There’s something eating away at me every day. At 31, as I look back on my life, I feel as if I’ve been duped. I was a sold a package of false goods. I was sold a one-size-fits-all American Dream that turns out to not fit many at all.

I have a job

I’m currently trading my best and most formidable years on this planet for a regular paycheck. And in return, I have agreed to spend the majority of my waking hours and relationships residing in a 5ft x 5ft lifeless grey cubicle clicking my way to company profits.

The surface area of Earth is 197 million square miles. 197 million square miles of beautiful oceans, seas, rivers, and lakes. 197 million square miles of mountains, glaciers, deserts, and rain forests. 197 million square miles of mammals, marsupials, trees, plants, and life. 197 million square miles of eco-systems, cultures, beliefs, and history.

197 million surface square miles of experiences to live.

Instead, I’ve opted to exchange those 197 million square miles for a 5’x5′ cubicle. I’ve decided to sell my time in exchange for a perception of financial security. I’ve given up one for the other…and I think that decision is slowly killing me every single day.

I have a son

My 1yr old son is awesome. He requires a lot of energy, as expected, but he’s awesome. I love watching him learn and grow every day. The way he mimics behaviors, studies his environment, and his complete emotional transparency is nothing short of astounding to me. He effortlessly makes me smile after every battle with traffic on my home to see him.

And I can’t shake the feeling that I’m failing him every single day I sacrifice my time with him to go do something I hate. I feel like I fail him because I’m not spending that valuable time at his side. But most of all, I feel like I fail him because I’m not being the example of the man I hope he grows to be–authentic.

Parents lead through example…period.

I have to be able to look him in his eyes one day and encourage him to be exactly like his father and follow his dreams and passions. Today however, I would only be able to tell him to make sure he’s not like his father, and make sure he has the courage and self-confidence to follow his dreams.

Kids don’t do what you tell them to do. They do whatever they see you do.

I have to be a better steward of my true self if I hope to teach my son that being true to himself and those around him is the real path to happiness.

I have a wife

Wifey and I playing in ATL
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Wifey and I playing in ATL

Our lives are all tied to other people in some way. Friends, family, strangers, online followers, whomever. If not, odds are you’re living a very disconnected and lonely life void of grand purpose. We are all here for one another in one way or another. The sooner we realize this, the better off all of us will be.

I fall into the 75% of the world’s population that marry at least once in their life. As such, my life is intimately interwoven with my spouse’s. Her decisions, demeanor, behaviors, reactions, world views, opinions, upbringing, even dinner choices affect my life at every turn. Same goes for me. Same goes for any married couple.

I have to be aware of how my decisions directly impact her life. I can’t simply up and make the changes I feel I need in my life without drastically altering her quality of life. This is the realization and responsibility we took on when we decided to share our lives together. I can accept that.

After 7 years of marriage, my wife is beginning to find and walk her path of life…and I’m authentically thrilled for her. To be able to have the time to discover yourself, do the things you love, get recognized for it, and also get financially compensated for the same things is something I would like every single person to experience. I’m truly proud of her and the person she continues to become.

My wife and I have many aspects of our marriage that I do cherish. Freedom, reliability, a desire to understand the other, and a desire to see the other individual happy all come into play for us year after year. That’s more than I can say for many other couples.

Like any marriage, it’s far from perfect and we have areas that need constant attention and strengthening. Some of the areas we fall short on weigh heavily on me. Nothing I’m writing would be a surprise to her as we try to be honest with one another about how we truly feel, so these shortcomings in our relationship is nothing new. I often wonder if after 7 years, have we hit the “status-quo” or will things eventually improve in the areas we are working on.

I have recently implemented a new strategy to help strengthen the marriage overall (which I’ll be writing about at length later), and I have a lot of confidence that we can remain together AND happy. The other side of that coin worries me at times though. I know for a fact that the areas we fall short contribute to my depressed feelings and I worry that timing may not be on our side at times.

Every effort requires fuel. We need to make sure we both have enough fuel to power our common goals for each other. I’m dedicated to my strategy for consistent improvement, and I look forward to writing and sharing our story.

I have goals

As shitty as I feel driving into work every day, I feel the exact opposite when I have the time to work towards my personal ambitions and goals. I feel great as I write this article. I feel great sharing my weaknesses with you. I know I’m not the only one that feels this way and one of my many goals is helping other people find their own voice. Helping others not to feel so damn alone is a passion of mine. There is strength in numbers…strength in community. I’m not a fan of most organized religion, but by far the best thing they have going for them is a strong sense of community.

I’m working my way through my issues. I’m acknowledging the kinks in my armor, because I can’t address them until I do–until I’m honest. I’m dedicated to fighting for my life, because it’s worth fighting for.

“But I can never right my wrongs, unless I write them down for real” – Kendrick Lamar

My goals keep me focused. And I’m at a critical juncture in my life where I can keep running on the treadmill of routine monotony, or step off and purposefully put one foot in front of the other as I follow my true self. This article and this site represent the decision I’ve already made. What decision have you made about your life?

Are you going to keep running in place until you run out of fuel, or will you walk your path along mine?

Talk to me. Holla ‘atcha boy. What’s your life look like? How do you feel about where you are or what direction you’re heading? We can all help one another.

 

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Comments

comments

  • Danny Del Rio

    Isom,
    It takes courage to put your feelings down like that. Understand I have felt the same way almost to a t. When I was a manager of a butcher shop I spent 55 to 60 hours a week in a thankless job, just like you. I had a schedule that always changed so I could never make plans. I even had a hard time getting off for my daughters first birthday. I was told I would have to work, I looked my superior in the eye and said ” I will be sick that day and three days surrounding it if you want to challenge me.” I eventually blew out my back and now stayed home with two girls,1and 3. Now money is tight, I barely keep the house clean and I have become the fattest I have ever been. I feel that I am failing my girls because I shouldn’t have to worry where their next meal is coming from, or not having health insurance for me. What do I have to look forward to is a life filled with student loans from a a plan that has failed. I even took crazy pills for a while. Then I looked around and decided to embrace what I have, my family. I embraced the idea of what I have to do for them in this moment. Tomorrow might be full of joy or tears, so I embrace today.

    • isomKuade

      Thanks for the comment. I hear you, man. I feel like there are more people in our boat than are willing to admit. I also want people to see exactly what I’m doing to try and change my situation. It’s crazy how differently we can see our lives than even those closest to us. As I’m sure my son and your little girls see us as anything but failing, but as with all things, it matters how we see ourselves. My attempt to embrace my day to day has run out of steam. I now feel that if I’m not in pursuit of something different, I’m only rationalizing my current situation. I still embrace all the good that my life has (and it has tons), but I’m still chasing that personal meaning. Here’s to whatever tomorrow may bring, sir. As always, if you ever wanna chat, you know where to find me.

  • http://www.boxerandthebaby.com Tamara

    I feel you.

    I recently took a contract job. This brought me back to a place of appreciation for following my dreams as an entrepreneur. I was praised for the work I did but I was stress about the commute, the time away for my baby and the fact that I was profiting someone else more than myself. The hourly was nice and we were on target for our financial milestones but I questioned was it really worth it.

    I think you’re in a good place because you’re in a financial situation where you can invest in your passion. There is a trade off for the time and I know you can’t get it back but its a daily investment towards your the ultimate goal. Use that as your motivation.

  • http://blackandmarriedwithkids.com Lamar

    Thanks for sharing something so honest. I think that you are in a good place because of the goals that you mentioned. Those goals are a roadmap to a different place. The place where you would like to be. What we all must remember is that the process takes time. I’ve always had dreams of being a self-employed entrepreneur and it took five businesses and 15 years to get here. That was not in the plan lol. I’m not even doing what I ever envisioned doing.

    There were times along the way where I was close to resigning the idea and concluding that maybe I was meant to grind out the 9 to 5 like everyone else. Even when my latest business venture started to take off it still took time and longer than I would have liked for me to gain freedom both financially and with my time. My kids had to endure that sacrifice for those early years but I kept my goals and dreams in focus that the sacrifice would only be temporary and it wouldn’t be in vain. Currently I work much longer each day than I’d like to. I would love to spend more downtime with my kids even though I’m around much more than before. Its a tough feeling to swallow but I have to remind myself again that the payoff is worth it and work my hardest to ensure the sacrifice is only temporary. I think you’re on the right path brother. Thanks again for sharing.

  • http://femibello.wordpress.com Femo-G

    Great piece!! I have started taking a different approach to life, I tend to free my mind more now than i did before and i am more open to learning and improving i think this is where my happiness really is.

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