Quiet Reflection

11.18.2017

The truth is, I’m not doing so well.

I have an avoidance issue–when the shit really hits the fan I withdraw from friends and family and anything that even smells like it might be positive social interaction. Unfortunately for my dumb ass, positive social interaction happens to be one of the best things for you when you’re struggling with what I’m struggling with. (I never said I make good choices.)

The truth is, I’m doing this alone.

All the bullshit people like to say about how important it is to reach out to someone and tell them how you’re feeling? About how your parents will love you no matter what and you’ll always have people on your side, blah blah blah… yeah, whoever came up with that is an asshole, and an asshole who had good parents. Not that mine didn’t try. They jut weren’t any good at it.

The truth is, I’m barely hanging on.

I fee la profound sense of guilt. I have so much, so much more than I will ever need, and I feel like I’m wasting it. Like I have no right to feel this empty when there are happy people who have nothing, who’ve lost everything, who never had anything to begin with. People like to push the self help shit for depression, but they don’t know what they’re talking about. I feel gratitude. I know what I have.

I feel like I’m slipping. ❀

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Quiet Reflection

9.24.2017

I didn’t disappear off the face of the earth, I’ve just been taking time to handle my real life. I spent some time with Stardust and other friends, and I’ve had a wonderful conversation with Sunshine at least once a week about work/life balance and the really important things.

It strikes me every so often that I haven’t disclosed my mental health problems to my friends, and I wonder if perhaps there isn’t more there worth exploring.

At the end of the day I know that I really, really enjoy writing–the physical act of putting pen to paper and making words appear as if by magic–so I intend to spend the next few weeks writing in that space. As long as I’m in this the-drugs-are-working-today-so-let’s-embrace-the-hedonism swing, I’ll ride it as far as I can go. ❀

Quiet Reflection

9.12.17

I’m breathing 100%.

I’m drinking 90%.

I’m eating 80%.

I’m sleeping 70%.

I’m thinking 60%.

I’m alive. Last night I had three pounds of watermelon and an otter pop for dinner. I’m alive. The drugs aren’t working anymore. I’m alive. There is joy and pain and sorrow and contentment. I am alive. This could always be worse.

I’m going to make it. ❀

Quiet Reflection

8.6.2017

I’ve been feeling sick the last few days. I knew it was a mix of chronic dehydration and skipping meals, but skipping meals leads to skipping doses. Turns out dizziness and nausea is a side effect of withdrawal from my medication.

I didn’t realize I was missing so many doses, in such close proximity (and I’ve similarly missed breaks a work), but apparently it’s been completely messing with my physical health. Go figure.

I’m still tired, still dizzy. Making a concerted effort to actually eat three meals a day, actually take my medication on time. Stay hydrated. Etc.

This is recovery. ❀

Quiet Reflection

7.22.17

I had lunch with Sunshine yesterday. I meant to post something then, but I’d had a long week so I went to bed early.

I’ve read a lot about trauma over the last six and a half years. I’ve learned a lot about relationships, too, and how they relate to trauma. The short version is that trauma separates us from our relationships with other people, and the best way to overcome trauma is to re-forge those connections.

It amazes me how much a simple 25-minute lunch helped. I don’t think he evens knows the depths of this hell, let alone that I’ve been backsliding. It doesn’t matter. He doesn’t need to. Sunshine is steady, a grounding force no matter what kind of hurricane I feel. I am so grateful for his friendship.

❀ ✩ ✿ ✩ ❀

I’ve been thinking about the blog, and what I intended to do with it. It’s part journal, part essay collection (topic posts being marked by alliterative theme titles). The essay-ish things have been on the thin side, facilitated mostly by a pretty severe backslide that I’ve been fighting this year. I’m sorry. I’m still fighting.

The journal is sporadic at best, for which I also apologize. I haven’t quite grasped the concept of a publishing schedule yet. I’m still trying.

The important thing, I think, is to keep taking these tiny steps. And someday, I hope, I’ll be out of the woods.

Again. ❀

Quiet Reflection

7.16.2017

It’s been a rough day.

I got a lot done today—little things. Personal things. One big thing I’d been meaning to do for months of my life (maybe six, now?) and haven’t because of the depression. I wonder what I must sound like to people who don’t know what this is. Crazy, I’d imagine.

I’ve also been restricting, which is something I’m not proud of. It’s not on purpose, which I guess is some kind of relief. It’s just that I don’t want to eat, so I don’t eat, and intuitive eating only works if you’re not anhedonic because when you are…you wind up in this mess. Been taking my meds on time, though.

I’m in a lot of (emotional) pain, and I’ve been having a lot of epiphanies. I’ve been writing a little bit, and I think I need to start doing a lot more of that because for some reason, ink and blood are the only ways I can make my feelings real and I’ve sworn off the latter.

I have food ready to eat for breakfast tomorrow. I have food ready to eat for lunch tomorrow. I have enough water that I ought to be okay tomorrow. Everything seems to be ready.

There are things I want to write about on this blog, things I want to say but don’t have the courage to yet. I keep telling other people to be strong, that there is power in sharing stories. I don’t hold myself to the same standard that I hold other people to—in any aspect of my life—and so it seems I’m going to do the same here.

I wish I was braver. It’s something that I keep telling myself throughout my life. I also keep telling myself that being brave doesn’t mean you go looking for trouble. I also keep telling myself that being brave means trying things that you want to do, even if they scare you. Bravery is a practice, not a static trait. One can lose bravery. One can develop it.

As for tonight, I’m just trying to make it as easy as possible to be brave tomorrow. ❀

 

Quiet Reflection

7.15.17

My mother’s birthday is in a week. I’ll probably send her a card, because I still love her more than anything in the world and I know she’s having an incredibly difficult time with the estrangement–both mine and my brother’s–but I also know that I can’t even begin to heal from this monster if she and her husband a part of my life. I know that I need to carve out a space in the world where I can heal, and they can’t be a part of that.

Still hurts like hell, though.

It seems like I’ve been having a lot more bad days than good days recently. Somewhere deep down I know that it only feels that way because I’m doing the emotional work, that the emotional work fucking sucks and when this is all over with I’ll be grateful. But I’m also not entirely sure that I’ll ever reach a point where it’s all over with, and I also know deep down that if this is the case then I’m ready to fight for it. I’d rather have these days and live than let go for good.

My cat is in the bathtub, hiding from the sound of the storm building outside. It’s July in Phoenix, which means the days are sweltering and the late afternoons are filled with haboobs and the occasional spattering of rain. I used to think I hated the desert. I do hate the heat, but there’s something about watching a monsoon build outside your windows that creates an eerie sense of calm. It is during these moments that I feel the most whole, the most like myself.

It is also in these moments when I feel the strongest drive to create. I believe that everyone has this need inside of them, something that drives them, and if this need goes unfulfilled then our lives will suffer for it. It’s difficult to explain why I feel that I can’t create, why the words don’t come even as the need goes unmet. Everything anyone has told you about depression being the source of your art is absolutely full of shit. Creativity is just another thing the disease eats away.

I wonder sometimes if I will ever find peace. For now, if that’s the only way I can, I’ll take it in late afternoon hours. ❀