Friday, February 24, 2012

Daunting

Life with depression is daunting.I can't think of a better word.

Daunting-tending to overwhelm or intimidate. Yep. That's depression.

This past week at the therapist's I was completely overwhelmed. It was the kind of overwhelming that reminds me of those cartoons that get passed by something at high speeds and their heads go whirling around in circles or when Popeye gets hit with an uppercut and his neck swirls upward like a unicorn lollipop.



My mind was like a molasses hurricane. Befuddled, messy, but terribly sluggish. At times I would cry but for the most part I was confused and unable to hold onto my emotions long enough to process them into reactions.

The session was frustrating and I expressed my dismay at "being so unproductive." That's when my therapist earned her stripes and encouraged me to keep plugging along until next week-she quickly quipped that making that statement was progress in itself.


She noticed how aimless and fumbling my session was but reassured me that addressing just one issue at a time would send ripples of results toward the other issues. We wrapped up the session with a couple minutes of nose-blowing and calming breaths and some homework: figure out three things that I want so we could determine a direction to head toward in therapy.

At home that night I was touchy and agitated, mulling over my homework and battling feelings of disappointment and frustration over my session. After lying down in bed with a headache and settling down to sleep my mind began formulating my three main desires.

Here's what I came up with.

1) Community. I want (need!) to be a part of some support network or community-whether that be a group of friends, neighbors, colleagues, family, club or group.

2) Parenthood. I really cherish the prospect of motherhood and parenthood with my fiance.

3) Develop strong, personal, intrinsic values. I want to cultivate self-assurance in order to pursue my life as I desire. I don't want to base my decisions on the perceived or anticipated reactions/opinions of others and to develop healthy barriers.


These three things are still somewhat underdeveloped but I'm happy with my revelations so far. Baby steps. Respect the baby steps!

I'm still in a sensitive spot and moving forward is a daunting prospect. My goal for this week is to give myself some leeway and focus on softening my inner dialogue. Baby steps-just keep swimming :o)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Wednesday

Today I donated blood and on the way home I passed by the lake near our apartment and saw the cormorants perched on an old dock. I love the cormorants and I'm glad they're back-just in time for my birthday! I actually saw the cormorants for the first time on my birthday-talk about timing!

More great pics @ Tony Pratt's Blog

In other news I've been taking it pretty slow but was actually semi-productive yesterday and made the fiance's Valentine's Day card and designed a postcard invite for the wedding. Finally we have something done for the wedding!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Optimist or Pessimist?

A fellow blogger posted a link to this site and it just dawned on me-maybe I'm not really a pessimist???

http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/depression/what-are-the-signs-and-symptoms-of-depression.shtml

What is my pessimism is yet another depressive symptom? Hmm-that would be nice :o) Oh my gosh! That was optimism right there! I think I'm on to something...

On The Road Again

And yes-it's a metaphorical road. Although the fiance and I are taking a road trip down to Mt. Rainier/surrounding area to scope out things for the wedding-but that's a different story!

The past couple weeks have been rough, thankfully not as rough as this past spring was though. The fiance was able to find me an affordable and well-matched therapist down in Seattle. I didn't plan on driving to Seattle once a week for treatment-but desperate times call for desperate measures!


So far I've visited her twice-once for a meet-n-greet type of assessment and then one 'regular' session. The fiance has tagged along both times and he may or may not next week. He doesn't want to hamper my therapy and surprisingly I hardly noticed he was there! I think on a subconscious level I felt a little more support and confidence, but for the most part I didn't notice him at all.

I think it's a good thing that I can be completely honest with him and completely myself around him-my therapist pointed out that having him there could be some sort of acid test since I seem to have some hang-ups about not being good enough for him or thinking I'll scare him off with all this depressive insanity-I've yet to shake him! It's pretty amazing-he's pretty amazing.


It's a little weird talking about my thoughts during a depressive cycle. As the fiance would say, "that's the depression talking." Sometimes my thoughts are my own-and sometimes the thoughts are the depression meddling with me.

Like wanting to "scare off" my fiance. The sane me doesn't want to lose him, I love him! He loves me! I've never been happier and I want to spend my life with him-that's certain! But the depressive side has other ideas...

Depression says that if I'm too crazy for the fiance to hang around, that if "I" can scare the fiance off I won't have anything to live for. That once he's gone I can distance myself from the family and it would be so much easier to off myself.

Scary sonofabitch isn't he? This manipulative depression-fellow?

That's how Depression rolls. It gets inside your head and tries to keep you isolated-lonely-miserable, so miserable that you ache and feel so much pain that you'll kill yourself just to end the torture.


The scariest part is sometimes it's impossible to tell yourself apart from your disease. Sometimes-like now-I believe that my depression is embedded in every cell and every link of DNA in my body. It's daunting to contemplate a battle involving millions of minions spread throughout your entire body.

When you think of it that way-depression is like a massive, metastasized cancer. When you've tried to hurt yourself like I have, when you've lost all direction and been shoved back to square one where staying awake between the hours of 9am and 9pm is a huge accomplishment-you feel like a victim of Stage 4 Life Cancer.

Pretty discouraging. Even more discouraging is the thought of fighting this type of uphill battle over and over again for the rest of your life. Rotten, eh?

That's where preventative care comes in-sad part is we live in a society where "preventative care" is for hippies and granolas.

Guess I'll be attending the next woodstock. :o)


One foot at a time, I'll find my way. It's an effort to force myself to type that and even harder to try and believe I can make it-at least right now while I'm swamped in doubts-but I haven't got much choice. If I'm going to live, I'm going to have to work to survive and work even harder to thrive. Lucky for me I have a life partner that's willing to walk that rocky road with me.

So-I've got Stage 4 Life Cancer and I'm a lucky girl.