Okay, since everyone insists that no one minds, I'm going to keep writing my personal updates here... But I'll make sure to tag them as personal updates or something in the title so if you don't wanna know about stuff like this, you can skip it. Fair?
I was going to post this here the other day when I was debating about the personal updates here... So I'll post it now... But then I have something else to say about this post so...
We need a roommate. But everyone we know already has a place or has other plans.
We can't afford a place alone. We can't stay here forever.
And we're a legally disabled social phobic paranoid and a PTSD sufferer with depression and anxiety. +1 sweet child and +1 really awesome cat
Which means... we have no idea how to get to know people, haven't made friends in person in a long, long time... and are not sure we could handle living with someone we don't know.
So the only option left for us would be for me to somehow make us more money.
But I'm currently a total wreck. The tree hitting me in March set off my PTSD so bad and my depression is the worst it has ever been in my life.
I have no idea how to focus my energy into a project and bring us a steady income.
I feel lost. I feel helpless. I feel hopeless.
Allie Brosh of Hyperbole and a Half wrote a post upon her return from a year of depression which, combined with it's first part a year earlier, explains depression so very well. I personally didn't think much of it when the first post came out because I was not depressed then. It seemed like a very sad story and I didn't understand how someone could feel that bad. I wanted to help her. I wished I could help her. Because it seemed she was going through the worst thing anyone could ever go through. But by the time she made the second post... I was in the worst depression I've ever been in. And her descriptions of what it's like to be depressed hit home in such a deep way. I wanted to cry on reading her post, but I couldn't.. because I related. To borrow her metaphor, my fish have felt dead for quite a while now.
I highly recommend reading this post. If you are depressed... you may not even know it. Many people reach bad levels of depression without realizing something is wrong. Read the first post too. Many people on the interwebs realized through this brilliant woman's post that they had a problem and got help. Fortunately, Allie's second post comes to us after she has gotten help. There's a hard, long road to recovery from such a deep hole... But Allie will overcome this with the proper help.
I have admitted to my family, my friends and now to you... I need help.
I'm going to the doctor in a few hours... I'm going to ask for help.
If you are suffering... please listen to yourself. Please listen to the connection you might feel with the words of this post... or Allie's. Please go and get help.
Acknowledging that you need help is hard. It is very, very hard. But it is so important. This is no way to live. People need their fish to swim. We can't live with dead fish.
End of original post
So the good news... is that I went to the doctor. And the better news is... that it was a wonderful experience for a change. My area has notoriously terrible health care. In my life, I have had a doctor refuse to diagnose my adult-onset asthma (telling me I'm just overweight and that's why I couldn't breathe even hours after ceasing activity of any kind...) and I've had another refuse to diagnose my massive gall bladder failure (telling me I had heartburn. HEARTBURN. I know what heartburn feels like. This was crippling pain!)... And those are only the worst two stories. I hate going to the doctor. It usually means paying more money than I can afford to get... not really enough help for my efforts. So I have avoided this trip for months. Literally most of a year.
But I realized the other day, as the above post suggests... that I can no longer hide from this problem. I had spiraled down into such a bad place with my emotions that I was no longer enjoying life. At all. I've been generally miserable for so long that I forgot what happiness felt like.
So when I came home and took my new anti-depression medication and by the next day began feeling these odd little sensations in my chest when something funny or entertaining occurred, I was honestly baffled. I didn't remember what happiness was supposed to feel like, so when I felt jerks of the emotion running through me like tremors... I was very confused at first. Confusion left to some really weird almost crying, and then a really hilarious "piece of corn" moment (ala Allie Brosh's post. If you didn't read it, you totally should have in order to understand this!). Only my "piece of corn" was just something that my mate said that really set me off. (Seriously, Allie's post is required reading before this next sentence or you're just going to be scratching your head.) She was putting dishes away (we're still living at my sister's house) and came over to where Jen and I were talking, held out a Pyrex glass dish and asked my sister "This. Where does it live?" And I was in stitches for the next ten minutes straight. Even now, I can't help smirking when thinking about it. I don't know what was so funny about that statement. I guess because... somehow it made the bowl cute. It wasn't just a bowl. It was a little thing that lived in our cabinets among the dishes. It's home was up there in that apartment on the right. It liked to nestle in the other bowls. It was suddenly the most adorable object in creation and I lost it. I literally rolled on the floor laughing out loud. I laughed so hard my stomach hurt. And then I felt very strange about myself and about my condition. Suddenly, I remembered what it felt like to be happy... at least in a small way. I remembered enjoying things. And I wanted it back.
Now I'm taking my medication every day. This is only day 3. My meds can take a while to "take full effect" and there are some side-effects.(I'm dizzy, drowsy, and somewhat queasy and headachey. Why is this worth it? Because these symptoms tend to calm down after the first week on this drug and the emotional help is not optional at this point.) But the good news is that they already seem to be having an effect on me. Things I used to love that had gone from "YAY THIS!" to "... I guess I'll keep doing this and see if it becomes fun at some point, somehow... I guess I'd be kinda a dick if I didn't at least try to be happy again... so I guess this is necessary... even tho it's boring..." have begun to feel like they might actually make happies come out of me again. And one thing even has my current interest to the degree I'm looking forward to doing more of it, and actively enjoying the time I spend with it. (Playing Mass Effect 3 multiplayer with my mate!) Which is crazy awesome because I haven't enjoyed video games actively in so long.
So what this comes down to is... I'm on the path to recovery. It will take time. My analogy all this time to my family has been that I've felt like ... if I were a broken arm. If you grabbed a normal arm and wiggled it about or patted it, no one would complain at you. (This is a normal person with normal stress-levels and normal ability to cope with stress.) If you grabbed a broken arm, however and wiggled it about and patted it, you would wrench tears and possibly worse from its owner. I am the broken arm. Basically, the condition I've come to be in is so not-normal that I can't handle the tiniest stresses. It doesn't take big stresses that would be required to hurt the normal arm person... It only takes a little stress, even a normally harmless amount of stress to cause me immense pain and suffering because of the condition I'm in.
If I am a broken arm... this new medication is the cast. It was just put on. It has already offered some mild relief just from holding my arm together and steadying me and giving me hope that this condition doesn't have to be endless and eternal. But healing will still take time. I still need to rest. I still need to give myself care and return to my doctor to make sure everything is healing right. My arm may be a little itchy under there (side effects) but it will be worth it to deal with that if the arm is eventually healed... because I couldn't go on living like I was before the cast.
I have been through the worst depression I've ever experienced in my life, coupled with the worst anxiety and the worst flare-up of my PTSD ever. The last 3 months have been some of the worst of times for me. But I have gotten help and I'm getting better.
Give it some time... and I'll be okay, I think. Maybe everything isn't hopeless bullshit.
Later today, I'm going to make an announcement about future plans. I'm excited about it... and that is by itself a relief.
So I'll see you guys later. Tune in this afternoon for information about where my art is heading.
And by the way, thank you all for your support. It may not seem like it, but your comments have helped me feel less alone in some really rough times. Thank you all for being here for me. Thank you.