Tuesday, February 22, 2011

:::Part of the Whole Story:::

I want to thank everyone for their supportive comments on my last post. It's a post I've been wanting to write for a long, long time, but I never know how much to share as I blog about my life.

Those of you who have had the pleasure of knowing (putting up with) me in person have been through various ups and down with me throughout years. Whether I was forthcoming with the information or you guessed it on your own, it was probably obvious to you that I suffer from chronic depression.

Depression has been a constant struggle for me since before high school. This black dog never goes away. While some people may experience depression at different points in their life during depressive episodes, my form of depression is always present. It is always there, and it will always require vigilant handling, regardless of whether I am feeling up or down. I say this so that you can understand that I don't just feel blue, and that there isn't an easy cure for my version of depression. Think cold vs. emphysema. Colds stink and there really isn't a cure for them, but they eventually go away with the help of medication or just the natural run of time.When a cold is gone, it's gone.

Emphysema also has no cure, but unlike a cold, it won't run it's course. It's a permanent, every day condition. I hate it when people suggest that I can get over feeling depressed, or when people tell me, 'Oh, I was depressed once!' then give me advice for how I should get over it. You were depressed once? What? Seriously?

I would chew my right arm off to be done with depression. It is beyond frustrating (and hysterically enough, depressing) to go to so many great lengths to keep myself feeling well only to be socked by a worse-than-normal bout of depression.

I will always be depressed. I guess it's like being an alcoholic. Once you've gone through treatment and have remained sober for a period of time, you're just an alcoholic that is choosing not to drink. Every day you have to wake up and go through whatever processes it is that you go through to keep your head above water. Some days the alcoholic flies high, and some days all she can do is make it from sun-up to sun down without taking that drink that she's obsessing over. That's her victory. Staying still, not doing anything.

The severity of my depression depends on...I wish I knew what. I can be in the best of circumstances and feel suicidal. I don't know why that happens, I just know that it does and it will.

Living life is a difficult choice for me some times. When I wrote the previous post, I was at the beginning of a suicidal period, which have been coming more frequently lately. I don't want to shock anyone with that, I just want to help people understand why I am the way I am sometimes and what it's like to be someone who suffers from serious depression. For the past two years I have done more to try and improve my well-being, but over the course of time my depression has worsened. Again, I don't know why that is.

I have been in and out of therapy for years. I have been prescribed a bevvy of medications. I am currently on a few anti-depression medications, plus occasionally an anti-anxiety medication. I know this will make some readers and lurkers think less of me, but I'm hoping that by being honest about my struggles I can help someone else just by letting them know that they aren't alone.

I know I'm not the only one who has to deal with depression. For anyone reading this who also has to deal with serious depression, self-harming, and suicidal thoughts, impulses, and actions, I know what it's like. I know how hard every day living can be. I know why little things are major victories to you. I understand why you feel so tired and so drained just from 'being'.

The outcome that I hope for from this post is understanding, not pity. I'm closing the comment section because I don't want anyone to feel like they have to say something in response to all of this. Some of you may not know what to say, which is totally normal.

Thank you all again for your support. We were all in Texas this past weekend for Sophia's baptism, so I'll post about that soon.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

:::I Wish I Knew:::

When do you know you've failed at life?

When you're flying down a Texas highway with your head out of the window, vomiting, gagging, mumbling, 'I'm a winner, I'm a winner, I'm a winner...' over and over again, trying to psych yourself up for a flight that you've canceled, rescheduled, canceled and rescheduled again?

That was last year.

Spending all night in the bathroom vomiting so loudly that it wakes up your nephew?

That was the year before.

Seems like I always have a breakdown when I go to Texas.

When you're wandering around your apartment in the early morning hours with barely enough strength to stay upright, but a churning stomach that keeps you from lying down?

When you go into the red with sick time and look ahead and worry what you're going to do when you get sick again?

That was this morning.

And a couple months ago, and a couple months before that, and on and on.

When none of the steps you take to improve your situation pan out? When you make hard decisions but nothing happens?

I fail at life. I'm tired of going through the difficulties of life, of depression, alone. The never ending beating that happens. I wish I had a life coach that I could take out of my hall closet when I needed help, encouragement, a sanity check. I really don't feel equipped to continue any further. These past two years have been such a strain. Maybe I'm not who I think I am, maybe my goals have all been wrong. Maybe I have no idea what's going on around me. I know I don't understand, and I've prayed for understanding, but my ears must be filled with cotton.

I am at a loss, a complete and total loss. I can't make heads or tails of life, of my life. I've tried so very hard over these years to do the right thing at every juncture.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

:::12 on the 12th -- It's a Celebration:::

1. I've been on a washcloth bender for a couple of weeks now.
2. One of the local PBS station plays two episodes of Eastenders every Saturday morning. I. love. it. The episodes are like 5 years behind, so I enjoy googling the cliffhangers.
3. Blue skies.
4. Home pedicure.
5. Lovely coworker Erica painting the prettiest vase at All Fired Up.
6. Shorty chose to do this fused glass thing-y.
7. Oh, I struggled mightily making a design decision.
8. My friend's little sister was in town and she made these coconut orange cupcake delightfullnesses of wondrous glory.
9. Shorty gave me this framed vintage Utah postcard. I love it so much. Seriously, this is one of those gifts that is just so perfect that I never would have known to ask for.
10. Group photo. Many thanks to Shorty and Carissa who have made sure that I've had awesome birthday celebrations for the past three years. I can't believe how nice they are to me.
11. I took this botched self-portrait during my cab ride home. I have no idea what happened, but I like the streaky lights running through me eyes.
12. Birthday card and gift from Jill. She takes the best photos.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

:::Used Books:::

On Saturday I went to the funniest little used bookstore near Eastern Market. Books were crammed everywhere, everywhere, even along the staircase, making for a tight walk up to the second floor.

Foreign language books were in the bathroom where opera was playing.

Books were stuffed into closets and around chairs. They really utilized every single space, and then some.

One of the shop owners is an endearing curmudgeon type. There are funny signs all over the store, such as a sign over a stack of books about George Washington that says, 'George Washington lies here.' Near the register there are some featured books set out with humorous tags.

These were my favorites --

I stayed for a while, but then gaggles and gaggles of GW students poureded in, so I made my exeunt. I'm sure I'll be back though.