Friday, August 1, 2014

I'm getting older, too...

So the good news is I am still thankful, above all else. Thankful for having a support system in Mike, my immediate family, my aunt, my animals and friends both in person and through the wonder of technology. Also thankful for good physical health and an effective change in medicine over the past couple of weeks. I feel like I'm timidly coming out of another "low" in this journey that's lasted all year so far.

It's weird. I would cut off a limb to not be prone to anxiety and depression. To not have to make a conscious effort to think positively and redirect the way I think naturally. To not be so intentional and so emotional and to feel so depleted at the end of each day. My counseling background drives me to support others and hold them up even when I can't hold myself up. While I will never stop being that kind of person - I am PROUD to be that way - it makes for one tired little woman in this apartment at the end of the day. Antidepressant-induced slumber is always welcomed at the end of each night, along with some good animal snuggles.

And yet, while I'd give anything to be a carefree spirit, I'm wondering how I will live my life without my old pals, depression and anxiety. As I start to feel better (thank you again to my therapist, some good literature and my pills for guiding me through that process) I feel a new kind of anxiety. Because I am so used to living with sadness, crying every morning (because it's so intense to face the day and all the unknowns) will be an adventure to live life again without constant fight-or-flight. Freud has a term for this feeling of fearing what will happen when the depression eventually lifts, but it's slipping my mind (thanking the pills yet again, his time for the lovely side effect of memory fogginess)...what if friends and family will care about me and be less interested in me once I appear to be "better"? What if their lives now include traditions and customs that I can't be a part of yet? Or what if they're used to me not being around?

Truth is, folks with anxiety and depression are never cured in my opinion. It's always a cross to bear, it just is heavier during certain seasons of life. So when it's a lighter cross, it doesn't consume you, but you learn how to cope effectively and healthily. But the outside world is still a little scary on this end. Making good progress though due to the aforementioned and to Him.

I heard the Smashing Pumpkins' rendition of this song today, "Landslide." Always loved this song, especially the Fleetwood Mac live version. But hearing it from a depressive's perspective was very real and emotional. For those that are experiencing even a smidge of what I am this year, this is for you.

And I saw my reflection in the snow-covered hills/Till the landslide brought me down
Oh, mirror in the sky, what is love?/Can the child within my heart rise above?/Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?/Can I handle the seasons of my life?
Well, I've been afraid of changing 'Cause I've built my life around you/But time makes you bolder
Children get older/And I'm getting older too...


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