No Substance

Hello. I remember the last time I attempted to write a blog post before I shut the site down in a fit of depressive rage that lasted over 2 years. I sat in front of the keyboard, completely empty, unable to type a single word. My mind felt blocked off in a way. There were a lot of ideas rolling around but the execution of those ideas failed. I still have those ideas – they never go away – but even now writing this small, inconsequential post is about all I can muster up. It’s borderline painful, which is probably what writing is supposed to feel like anyway.

So, this is progress, I suppose?

Depression kills creativity, and you have to fight like hell to get it back. I’m ready to fight.

Quirks

Hello, it’s me. It has been a while since we have spoken, and it will probably be a long time until we speak again; don’t fret over it – it’s me, not you. Although I want to talk (boy, can I ever talk if I get going) I find it incredibly difficult to maintain relationships. It is an indescribable feeling to be an extrovert locked up inside a mind taken over by anxiety, and a little bit of depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder, to boot. I have the tools to be successful in life but have absolutely no idea how to use them because the instructional manual was lost a long time ago, and the replacement is written in a different language.

I started this blog hoping it would be therapeutic for me; it would hopefully give me an outlet to write what was on my mind at the time, a way to flesh out the problems. I was hoping that it would help me process things. In reality, I am too scared to post anything most of the time. It’s too painful to think of accidentally offending someone, or worse, being criticized or rejected. Maybe this will surprise some of you reading this who know me well because I can have an acid tongue from time to time or an acid pen, depending on how you look at it.

I don’t make a good first impression; in fact, it can sometimes take me weeks, months, or years until I warm up to you. Why so long? Because I probably don’t think you like me very much, plain and simple. I am always shocked when I realize that someone actually values me as a friend, co-worker, etc – my mind is so busy informing me that everyone thinks I am an asshole that sometimes I will read the slightest facial expression or casual remark from you as an affirmation of that. It is exhausting to know me personally, ask anyone that is close to me.

So, in the interest of clarity, I thought I would list a few of my “quirks,” some things about me that I don’t necessarily share with people but might help those who have a hard time figuring me out. Secondly, maybe writing them out will help me overcome them. Maybe not. It’s worth a shot. In no particular order…

  1. I don’t like odd numbers unless they end in 5. You will usually find my car stereo tuned to a volume setting that is an even number. If it’s too soft at “16,” I will move it to “18.” It makes me physically uncomfortable to know that it could be set at an odd number unless that number ends in 5. Why 5? I don’t’ know.
  2. If you are making plans with me, I need to know every detail. Where are we going? What time? Who will be there? Is it busy? What is the parking like? How should I dress? I don’t always ask these questions but they are always burning in my mind. I don’t like the unknown – spontaneity isn’t my strong point.
  3. And if you do invite me somewhere where the majority of the people are unknown to me, I most likely will not show up. Meeting new people is terrifying to me. I am uncomfortable even when I am with a group of friends.
  4. Wearing a hat for me is akin to Linus’s security blanket, without the thumb-sucking. If I have a hat on, I am usually feeling more anxious than normal. Probably because I feel it helps me to blend in better because dudes wear hats? I don’t know, I don’t make the rules.

Well, I think that is as far as I am willing to go today. I don’t want to scare everyone away right from the start. The most difficult part of living with these eccentricities is that I actually realize they are eccentricities but am powerless to change them. My head is a constant buzz, there is always noise up there, always a devil on my shoulder. It gets tiring and lonely.

 

 

Get on the bus(par)!

It shouldn’t be a shock that the new medication doesn’t seem to be working. The doctor started me on the smallest dosage because that’s what good doctors do. However, I will be paying him a visit today because, after a brief respite, the downward spiral continues. Last night was the worst, culminating in an all night panic attack. Any of you out there who have experienced them know they are no fun at all. I’ve been having mild ones almost every night as of late, but last night I legitimately thought my heart was going to explode, which is, of course, ridiculous. Needless to say, I have an appointment with the doctor today.

Yesterday was a lovely day here, though, and the sun shined bright and warm. The wife and I went out for two separate walks and it felt incredible to feel that fat old sun on my face. I was hoping that it would give me a bit of a recharge, but mental illness is very unpredictable with that; it doesn’t always listen to Mother Nature. I’m not giving up hope, however, that I can become a modern day John Adams with my walks. I don’t think I will ever adopt his love of manure, though; that is a deal breaker for me.

This is one of those boring, mental health posts, and I do apologize. I’m having a rough time of it as of late, and just getting these words out were laborious. Hopefully with the spring will come some relief.

Anxious Away!

I’ve been on many prescription drugs in my lifetime, mostly all of them having no positive effect on my disorders. A combination of depression, anxiety, and OCD (newly diagnosed!) can be a tricky thing to prescribe for, especially if you’ve been constantly mis-diagnosed (I was once put on anti-psychotics that knocked me out; I couldn’t even function. I’m not psychotic.) About a year ago, perhaps a bit longer, I decided that I was fed up with the toll the drugs were having on my body, and my life, and decided to stop taking them. I really was in a bad way. Of course, my life slowly spiraled even further out of control, opening up a new Pandora’s Box: do I continue to slide further into this misery I created, or raise the white flag and try again, this time with a new set of doctors and therapists? I chose the latter. I had a superb therapist before I moved, and I was lucky to find another great therapist where I am currently living. I approached her with some ideas about psychotropics, and she helped guide me towards something she thought would help me accomplish a semblance of normalcy; she even went as far as helping me find a doctor. This time, I found a doctor who was more interested in my well-being than just pushing the pills down my throat.

Yesterday, I sat in the office, talked briefly, but intensely with the doctor, and left with a new prescription (again.) I am already feeling the benefits of the drug, which doesn’t need to build up in your system in order to be effective, nor is it habit-forming, which was a concern for me. I know it will be a long road of psychotherapy and pharmacological therapy, but I’ve finally admitted that I am sick, and I can’t do this alone.

The resolution feels good. Let the sun shine down on me, and all of you, as we all live in this world together.