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It is still here, and I am still here. Sometimes, like these times, I get swept into a maelstrom of seemingly endless focused work hours and no sleep, and the last thing I feel like I can do is get on a computer when I finally set the work computer down for a two or three hour trifling doze of dreaming about work. Between overload and overtired, it almost took me down this time, to the depths, but MKL proved his wonderfulness again…when I called him, choice in hand, and said, “I need you to talk to me,” he didn’t ask what was wrong or why I needed this or what he should talk about. He just talked, about his day, about a phone call to his parents, about S3’s new car. Just talked. And listening to his deep, comforting, seductive voice talking about normal things that happen in lives when you have a normal amount of hours to live a life, made me choose to empty my hand and look forward to the prospect of holding his. It’s a strange thing, not living in the same house as a married couple (and yes, we’re working on it…we have a new plan.) We are not bound by the day-to-day battles over clean kitchen tables or piles of laundry or car parts, but we have made a point of identifying what our individual triggers are, and strategized on how to make it good for each of us. We’re being grown up about it. But now we are getting impatient, and more lonely for one another, and as sad as that sounds, it is a good thing. Adventures are in the offing, and I have so much to say. For now though, I may have half a day to breathe, and then back into the thick of the fray, so I thought I’d pop by to say hello. And bring you some flowers.
Quote of the day: “I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something. So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life. Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, Do it. Make your mistakes, next year and forever.” — Neil Gaiman (one of my favorite authors)
The golden hem of the sunset’s slip against the black mountain’s silhouette
Lights reflecting out of chrome and steel windows
My head on MKL’s shoulder
My boss reading me a poem an old campfire poem – “The Shooting of Dan McGrew”
My fuzzy moose robe that feels like a hug from my husband
A dinner of Merlot and a lavendar bath
Well, not exactly, but the blues are singing a song of me today, and kitties always seem to help, whether it is images on a screen, or the real thing sitting on my heart. Mr. Man does have a tendency to lay on whatever part of me isn’t feeling up to snuff. He’s a wise healing kitty. It was a lovely Thanksgiving, and I hope you all enjoyed it or at least kept family disputes to a minimum. I know it can be a tense time, especially this year.
For me now, we enter into a strange chrysalis-like phase that often lasts from after Thanksgiving until after the anniversary of my Mother’s passing. It will be ten years this year, and seems like yesterday sometimes. Two friends have lost a parent in the last week, and my heart goes out to them. It alters the character of the holidays when a loss is associated with days that the rest of the world associates with a certain celebration.
So for now, kitties.
Quote of the day: “The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” — Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
A lovely day
A lovely yesterday with MKL
A Downton Abbey marathon
A long talk with Kelsea
The East Simpson Coffee Shop
In the past three weeks, two people close to me have lost family to suicide. Now, two young souls will never see the beauty of another sunrise, and their families will never be the same. I know how hopeless and painful your life can feel, but I know it always gets better. I also know that, at that pivotal moment, it can be impossible to see that. There is always someone who cares, someone to reach out to, even if that person is a stranger. I may be a stranger to you, but if you’re reading this, and if you ever think that you can’t go on, reach out to me. I care about you. There is so much more than the moment you are in.
Quote of the day: “When people kill themselves, they think they’re ending the pain, but all they’re doing is passing it on to those they leave behind.” — Jeannette Walls
Our first snow (but only because we need the moisture)
Snuggly Mr. Man
Leftover chinese food
My toasty Razorback fleece onesie
Some inner calm
I believe that on the other side of the darkness of depression is beauty, like this tunnel to the sea. Depression is tricky. People can’t see it. I can hide it from myself, from MKL, from anyone who knows me well. I don’t do so to be disingenuous. It’s just that it’s my problem. Inside, I believe it’s boring and it’s shameful, and I don’t deserve to be depressed because my life is good and rich, and it’s just me being whiny. I mean after all, how many times have I written about it? That’s how depression works though. It tells you you’re not worth anything. It takes a lot to move through its tunnel. And I’m moving now, towards the beautiful piece of blue. Thank heavens, and let’s hope this forward motion lasts longer than a day or two.
Quote of the day: “You say you’re ‘depressed’ – all i see is resilience. You are allowed to feel messed up and inside out. It doesn’t mean you’re defective – it just means you’re human.” — David Mitchell
A compromise position for Mr. Man
My first piece of art
That Trevor is okay
Silence has been both a friend and an enemy for me of late. I realized, after a day of blessings and a day of self-pity, that service is one of the keys to feeling more like myself. Nothing great, nothing spiritual, just small things that help others. It is what is at my core. It helps me find my fair winds and keep sailing.
Oak Island, North Carolina.
Quote of the day: “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” — Mahatma Gandhi
A beautiful warm day
Finding components of our dream house
The coyote standing in the middle of the dry field at sunset
Sun shining on wild sunflowers this late in fall
MKL’s and my girls’ support and love
Even though it’s still lovely here, I have been missing Cozumel*. My anxiety from work has made me doubt my abilities as a writer, as an artist, and as a competent human being, and that’s been really rough. It’s very reminiscent of my days in abusive relationships, and as was the case then, I don’t know how to improve it. MKL has been a rock and a treasure. I understand that I have choices, but I hate being driven to them because I cannot resolve my own situation. Yes, I know I’m being vague, but that’s how it’s got to be. I remember being so clear and at peace in Cozumel. That was a magical place for me. I want that feeling back.
Quote of the day: “You find peace not by rearranging the circumstances of your life, but by realizing who you are at the deepest level.” — Eckhart Tolle
Daily messages for my girls
Work (even so)
Sometimes, it’s hard to tell, especially when depression shadows you, constantly grabbing for your hand to hold you back. Even when I know the things I need to do to come out from a bout, I sabotage myself by not doing them. Sigh.
Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Quote of the day: “When you’re lost in those woods, it sometimes takes you a while to realize that you are lost. For the longest time, you can convince yourself that you’ve just wandered off the path, that you’ll find your way back to the trailhead any moment now. Then night falls again and again, and you still have no idea where you are, and it’s time to admit that you have bewildered yourself so far off the path that you don’t even know from which direction the sun rises anymore.” — Elizabeth Gilbert
An empty drawer
Birds flying in formation
I have had a very, very blue day. One of those days when it feels like I will never, ever get ahead, and there’s no one who I can ask for help. Yes, a pity party. Since this is not my first pity party, I know that making others feel better makes me feel better. I know not to anticipate problems that may never materialize. I know that worrying and feeling sorry for yourself does no good. I know that I suck at reaching out to people when I’m low. I know that some people actually do love me and would be heartbroken if I was gone. I know that some of my friends are hurting over real tragedies much larger than my own – which makes empath me hurt with them. I know that we each live in our own life in our own skin in our own heart, and that comparing someone else’s suffering or troubles to your own, or to your own feelings, is pointless. You feel what you feel when you feel it. Period. I know from the wisdom of my Mother that we all do the best with what we have at the time., so don’t beat yourself up about the past. Just keep movng forward. I know that hugs are wonderful and I need more of them, and to get one, you give one, and since I can’t physically hug all of you, I will share this mural from Cozumel, as a virtual hug. I hope it makes me feel better, and I hope it makes you smile.
Quote of the day: “Optimist: Someone who figures that taking a step backward
after taking a step forward is not a disaster, it’s a cha-cha.” — Robert Brault
Hugs from MKL
A Skype with my girls
Dogs asleep in the windows in the sun
How in an office I visited for a week in Puerto Rico, every morning everyone hugged each other