Sunday, January 4, 2009

Resolution Days... Day1, Happiness

The trouble with resolutions is that you can't just make them, not if you really want them to happen. You have to have a plan, some way that you're going to put some structure in place to make sure that there's some chance that it will happen. Otherwise, it's not a resolution, it's a wish.

So I wrote down my eight resolutions, and now the question is, what can I do to make these things happen?

The first one, "work on happiness", is actually the hardest and most painful one. I was going to do it last. But it's probably the most important one... and so, well, let's be brave, I guess.

I have been, lately, just beyond unhappy. I have been crushingly, overwhelmingly sad in a way that I just don't know how to deal with (and I've had a lifetime of dealing with depression and so forth). It is becoming incapacitating. I get up every morning and spend two or three hours just getting to the point where I can do something besides cry. I think it's fair to say that this is not normal.

Michael says, well, what do you expect? Your mother died last summer. The process of grief takes time. And so on. But it's not that. I mean, it is that in a way... I miss my mother every day, and I am still filled with anger at the unfairness of it all. In some ways, it's hard for me to imagine that there will ever be a day when I say, "I'm over this now." Some losses you never get over. But I understand this. It's not my first loss. It's part of life. I can deal with it. If it were only this, I think I would be all right. But it's the proliferation of a thousand small things, not so much this one big thing.

It's been nearly a year since Michael has been really well and mobile. It's hard on him; it's hard on me, and it hasn't gotten easier. There's little to break up the endless medical problem after medical problem; we can hardly go anywhere, and when we have, it's most been a mistake. And I do everything. This is not a complaint... just a fact, and over the last year, nearly everything has become my responsibility, and it wears on me. I am afraid that these things will never get better... although I believe that they will.... and at the same time, I have to try to be the optimistic and encouraging one. And the weight of all of it... I don't know. I mean, I am not a complainer. But I have so little time to do anything that might make me feel better, and I'm so isolated, in a way, and the combination of all of it has, I think, tipped me into a kind of depression that's beyond anything I've experienced before.

And I have to do something about this. I've been trying to wait it out, but it's getting worse rather than better. So I think that this is taking me back to the place I've been trying to avoid, going back on antidepressants. Don't get me wrong here... I am not at all anti-medication; I was on them for years, and they are lifesavers for a lot of people. But let's just say that the end of my antidepressant experience was a lot worse than the beginning, and left me with considerable reluctance to try this again unless absolutely necessary. I haven't wanted to deal with the whole adjustment and side effects thing... and in some silly way, to whatever extent this is all about grief, I wanted to feel it, not have it numbed (even though I know that it's not the way that it works). As some bizarre sort of tribute, I suppose. And because I just think that I should be able to cope with everything in the universe.

But this is wrong. It's wrong partly because I keep telling Michael that he has to try medications that might help him even if he doesn't want to, so it's just flat-out hypocritical for me to be unwilling to do the same thing. And my state of mind affects him as well as me. I've started to call my doctor about this five or six times over the last few months... and every time I talk myself out of it. And that's the point of talking about it here, really, to make that commitment to actually doing that. Monday.

Things are not supposed to be like this. And so maybe if I could deal with the biochemical bits of it, maybe some of the other things that will help... the rest of my resolutions... will be possible.


Crabby McSlacker said...

I know it must be so hard... but it sounds like a really sensible decisions to call your doctor and see about the antidepressants. So sorry you're in such a tough place! But I hope things will be getting better soon.

Nina said...

And I *did* do it. Called the doctor this morning, seeing him tomorrow. Need to call psychiatrist sister later and see what she has to say...

Sigh. Did I mention that I don't want to do this?