Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Support of Friends

I've been making an extra effort to get together with people, and it makes me feel better. I get so much out of just sitting in a cafe and chatting about something other than my condition. Depression sucks, and it sucks the joy out of life, but the support of my friends is a panacea like no other. Some I wish lived closer so I could see them, but we have phone conversations and Facebook chats. I never thought I would say this, but thank God for Facebook. It's kept me in touch with a whole crew of supporters without whom I might not even be alive right now, I really mean that.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Sorry Haven't Written Again

I know I've been quiet. I guess I have good days and bad days. On the bad days, I feel seized by a kind of paralysis that gets me so fully in its grip that I can't seem to function, I mean I can't get myself motivated to get on the exercise bike, to even do the dishes. Those days are a trial because without the motivation, I slip deeper into depression and it's a downward spiral. It's so hard.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Sorry Haven't Written

I haven't had much to say over the past week. I'm maintaining -- no terrifying bouts of anxiety, no dangerous dips into deep depression -- the routine of my day is keeping me on the same level. I see friends sometimes, I use Facebook to keep in touch with new friends and old ones alike. I go for my walks and I do the exercise bike for a half hour. I'm maintaining. I don't feel "right" yet, but I can see how I can get there.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Feeling So Low

I don't think this Zoloft is working, doc. I feel so low. It started to set in earlier in the week and now comes Friday and I feel like I'm made out of lead. I had high hopes for the Zoloft. Maybe I was putting too much stock in the label "anti-depressant." I've been doing the exercise bike, I've been going on my walks, I've been trying to write for my freelance assignment -- it's going okay, not great, but okay -- but I'm doing it all from such a low place. This stuff helps people? Are we sure how this all works? I can't believe people around me have been living with this kind of anxiety and depression and I didn't know, not even a little bit, what it's really like. I am so sorry.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Having a Hard Time

I'm having a hard day. I'm pacing and upset. I went for a long walk but it didn't seem to help.

Joe has noticed a pattern that I can't argue with -- that whenever I break from the routine I have set up, which includes riding the recumbent exercise bike for thirty minutes and writing in my diary, then the next day or day after is a hard day.  Well I did break from my routine, thinking, oh it's a holiday weekend, let me enjoy it like a normal person and hang around and just "be." Not so much hard work.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Panic

It's an Ativan day. The panic set in early as a kind of paralysis over cleaning the apartment. The place is a mess and my mother is coming to visit me on Sunday. How can I help myself become the person who can keep a place clean and presentable? How did I used to do it? What demons in me right now are making it impossible to get certain things done, what's the blockage I'm experiencing? If I figure it out, I'll let you know. But it was an Ativan day.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Emotion Regulation: Fear

I'm learning so much about this thing called DBT. It's weird because the woman I was locked up with -- self-admitted with a heroine problem -- told me about DBT.  She was a psych student, and the more we talked she said she could tell that I would respond well to DBT. She happened to have come to the ward with her school books, and I learned that DBT is a modular work exercise-driven approach to un-crimping all of the wonky circuits in your brain. She was right, and now that I'm into it, I can see how DBT and CBT would certainly help the right kinds of people.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Being Here Now

Mindfulness is, in my opinion, the most important element of the four core parts of DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy). If you think about it, depression is looking backwards and ruminating about all of the past angers, failures, mistakes and regrets. Anxiety is looking ahead towards the what-if's and all of the things that can go wrong. There are days when the combination produces a crippling effect.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Good News

The worst thing about depression and anxiety is how isolating it is, even if you are doing the work required to reach out and be with people. I am so lucky that I have an army of friends both online and in person who are always sending me support emails and "me too's" about depression and anxiety, a veritable "you are not alone" group that has been keeping my spirits from dropping too far into the chasm. I can't say enough how great it is to have such a wide and caring support group.

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