Friday, February 12, 2016

Part of Me

Six days. That's how long it's been. Six. Good. Days. In a row, even!

I mention it because, well, six good days is quite the accomplishment. It's a reminder that six days could become seven could become eight. It's winter in New England, we haven't seen the sun in over a week, it's -4 fahrenheit out there (which is--what?--negative 20 C), and I'm not really into hard candies, so it's not as if I'm not expecting everything to be all sunshine and lollipops. Life isn't like that anyway. But it gives me a glimpse of hope that someday I might live a mostly normal life again.

Let's face it. I'm always going to have depression and anxiety. Twelve-thousand days ago, give or take, a sperm met an egg and genetically sealed my fate. Sure, childhood probably played some role in my makeup, and having a kid did scramble my hormones, but the fact remains. Depression and anxiety are part of me.

Other things are also part of me. For example, I'm highly intelligent and good at my work. I know my way around a kitchen and a garden, and yes, I can probably come close to plumbing a house. Numbers don't come easily, but I'm pretty good at mathematics. I'm well-read and articulate. And I have a four-year-old who loves Downton Abbey and Star Trek.

I'm also a writer, as in a real writer. I'm not someone who wishes I were I writer. I'm not an aspiring writer (aspiring novelist, on the other hand...). I am a writer. The bad days can't change that. The good days empower it.

I say this because I want you to know it's part of me. It's not something I pretend. If it makes me arrogant or conceited, so be it. I'm learning to accept myself, both the good and the bad. You should know. I've got what it takes.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Here I am

Radio silence here, which—now that I think of it—is very much like the publishing world. Anyhow, let’s get down to an update. Yesterday, I read over my last post. The optimism and cheerfulness struck me. September Me was full of hope. She was ready for normalcy, ready to put her hospitalization experience behind her. She expected a modicum of routine to return, and with it, she thought she had finally beat depression.

September Me was naïve.

To be completely honest, I’m floundering here. I’m a great big fish with a sideways head, stranded on a beach. The tide runs water over me with enough regularity to keep me alive, but that’s about it. Last week was a particularly difficult week. Monday my therapist dumped me. Or more correctly, her parents forced the break-up. We’d been seeing each other since September; these were a few frolicking months of fields and flowers and butterflies. I bared my soul to her, and as is true in all good relationships, she listened very well.

Then her parents got involved. The office she works for was bought by another company, and when the new company took over, they decided the office wouldn’t accept commercial insurance anymore. Now I am without therapy and without med management.

Enter my crazy. When I say I feel like I got dumped, I really feel that way. Why had this happened to me? What did I do wrong? My therapist was wrong. It wasn’t an insurance thing. I said something wrong. It was that time I told her I liked knowing death was an option. No, that wasn’t it. It was that time I said hurting myself was pleasurable. It’s a game I like to play. I know it’s wrong, but flagellant priests used to do it as a sign of devotion and unworthiness, and it was okay for them. I scared her. And it’s not like it hasn’t happened before. My first therapist was scared; she’s the one who sent me to the hospital. She’s not even a therapist anymore. I broke her. Now it’s happening again. Telling me it’s an insurance problem is a convenient excuse.

Oh my god. I’m a horrible person. I did something wrong and I wasn’t even trying to. I’m trying to be better. I’m trying. But it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter how hard I try because I’m going to screw it up. Now she’s not going to be my therapist. The universe hates me. This is why I can’t catch a break. I can’t catch an effing break.

I’m intelligent. I’m educated. I don’t swear. I let people go first. I live by high moral standards and am accepting of others. I care. But none of it matters.

See? I told you. Crazy. But it’s how my mind works. Thoughts like these are nearly impossible to avoid. They place me—or I place myself, depending on how you want to look at it—farther and father onto the shore, but fish that I am, I can’t breathe.

And that’s where I am now, struggling to breathe the same air as everyone else. Damn it, I need a new pair of lungs.