How to Balance Light & Darkness with Struggling Depression

Learning how to balance the light & darkness that comes while struggling with a depressive episode can be extremely difficult. I’ve started opening up more to my readers about my mental health history as time goes on. I battle several mental health illnesses, depression being one of them. I want to help educate the healthy brains, and comfort those others battling depression like me.

How to Balance the Light & Darkness of Depression


Traveling, and photography have given me a healthy, creative outlet to help express my pain during a depressive episode. My hope is that this article will provide anyone struggling comfort, and inspiration on how to balance your light & darkness.

If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, get help at https://depression.org


25 million Americans suffer from depression each year.

Everyone has had an experience to some degree with depression; perhaps it was the loss of someone close to you, losing your job, or being unhappy with a current living situation. However, with the several different types the term “depression” has caused incorrect assumptions and continues to be invalidated when laypersons talk about their experiences with depression. This is a huge social, medical, and recovery problem.

Recommended Read: “5 Types of Depression and How Can You Determine Which You Have” By Betterhelp


What is Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)?

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is not the same as the depression you felt when your loved one passed. The difference being, there was a reason you became depressed – you suffered a loss. It’s painful, and you probably remember your experience with the darkness you felt during that time. Thankfully, your depression will disappear as time passes and you begin to heal.

MDD is a mental health illness characterized by a persistently depressed mood with loss of interest in activities, eating, working, socializing, and sometimes life. This debilitating illness can cause significant impairment in ones daily life.

Mental health warriors suffering from MDD become depressed for no apparent reason, and will continue to battle the light and dark times of the illness the rest of their lives.


Depression is a serious mental health illness that involves a low mood and a extreme loss of interest in activities. Learn how to cope during a depressive episode through creativity and uplifting travel inspiration. It's time to end the stigma of mental illnesses. Finding the balance between light & dark.

What is the cause of MDD?

There are several possible causes to clinical depression, however these usually include a combination of biological, psychological, and social sources of distress. As more continue struggling with depression, more research on the illness is being done. Scientists have discovered that these factors can cause changes in a person’s brain function, altering the natural state of neural circuits in the brain.


Symptoms of Major Depressive Disorder

The persistent feeling of sadness or loss of interest that characterizes major depression can lead to a range of behavioral and physical symptoms. These may include:

  • Excessive sleep changes
  • Decreased appetite
  • Significantly low energy level
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Absence of joy and happiness
  • Inability to care for oneself
  • Daily behavior
  • Joint & muscle pain
  • Suicide

Depression is largely associated with thoughts of suicide. The risk increases by 25% for alcoholics who are depressed, rising to over 75 percent. 


Treatment for MDD

There is no cure for MDD. Treatment is typically an anti depressant medication, cognitive therapy, or a combination of the two. Research increasingly suggests treatments may normalize brain changes associated with depression. The battle to maintain the balance of light and darkness, is always just around the corner. Waiting.

How to Use Creative Outlets for Healing

When I travel, my depression doesn’t just stay at home, waiting for me to return. It comes with me, like a dark cloud trailing behind me. During my winter adventure to Big Sky, Montana last year – the light and dark contrasts from the snow inspired this post. The photographs tell my story, expressing my feelings during a depressive episode. I hope this article has enlightened you in some way, thank you for listening.


The Balance of Light & Dark; what depression feels like.

Over 50 percent of all people who die by suicide suffer from major depression disorder.

Life is a continuous balancing act between the light and dark that lives within us. The contrasts vary depending on the amount of light surrounding the individual. The amount of light can alter life between pure bliss and despair. For most people, maintaining the balance causes little disturbances in life, as easy as breathing.

How to cope with depression through healthy outlets.

Some days you lose the battle- and the darkness is all consuming. It pulls you deeper and deeper trying to drown you in its depths of despair to claim you for its own. The darkness will do everything in its power to take you from the people and the things that you love.

Winter Hiking in Montana, artful representation of depression through travel photos and experience.

Depression affects nearly 5-8 percent of Americans ages 18 and over in a given year.

I know it’s hard, this battle you’re fighting, and I understand that you’re exhausted from fighting off the darkness. I’ve experienced that lack of understanding most people in your life will never understand. The severity of your illness, and the internal battles you’re facing each and every day, I get it.

How to cope with the ups and downs of a depressive episode.

What you must remember, is that you are not alone in your struggle. The light and with it those feelings of joy & happiness will return. You remember the light, right?

Do you see it? Keep looking… It comes back slowly, creating shadows in the darkness, gently letting you know it’s returned. The arrival of that light signals that this battles end is near, bringing with it hope. Hold onto that small shadow of hope until the darkness fades and the battle ends. Watch as that light shines brighter each day.

Learn how to balance the light & dark moods associated with depression.

Before you know it, the battle is won and you return home. The light is warm, and comforting after so much time in the dark. It’s time to breathe now. Inhale slowly. Hold the breath. Exhale slowly. Again.

I’m so proud of you for finding that balance between the light and darkness. I’m filled with joy that you are here to live another day after your excruciating battle. We all knew you could do it. xx


If you or someone you know is struggling with their battle against depression, get help at https://depression.org


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8 thoughts on “How to Balance Light & Darkness with Struggling Depression

  • It was insightful to read about how depression might affect a person who loves to travel. I love that the light and dark contrasts of your photos in the snow inspired this post and helped express the way you feel. I hope that as travelers, we can be more open and understanding to people from all walks of life.

  • Thanks for sharing that deep part of yourself. As someone who suffers depression as well, I can totally resonate with what you described. There really is no external escape from it – even when you’re in the most beautiful location. It’s an internal thing and not an easy one to deal with. I’ve found for me, that it’s all about finding that inner connection to my true self. Living on this planet is hard.

  • It is sad that far too many people don’t recognize the cost of depression – to people and to society. I have seem people with mild cases. And can imagine how debilitating it is. It is great that it has not stopped you from travelling. And that you continue to make sure to find days filled with light.

  • I find that creative activities like sewing and crafting help a lot when I feel anxious, they’re never too far away from me. Spending time outside is also very important.

  • Thank you for sharing such a personal side of your life. It’s not easy to “put it out there” and by sharing your story, you will help so many others who may suffer from depression. Society puts such a stigma on mental illness for no good reason and it’s about time that we take it seriously and help those who may need it.

  • This is often a difficult subject to write about but you have done so really well in this post. Its great that travel and photography have given you an outlet to help you cope with you depression. I have always suffered from panic attacks and so can relate to dealing with a hidden illness. I hope you continue to heal.

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