I am not supposed to feel this way. I am not supposed to SAY that I feel this way. I have my health, the health of my family, the best friends this side of a planet with water. I have a job I still enjoy (although I will not show up for the most frivolous of reasons way too often). I have a home. And a car (that is nearing the need for life support, but still running). My refrigerator has just enough food. My cabinets are neither bare nor overflowing. But the people in my head do not know thankfulness. They do not know that there are other people suffering for “real” reasons. They do not know about hunger and homelessness and dead babies and divorce and natural disasters. They just know how they feel. And they feel…sad. This is both maddening and embarrassing. Because I want to be able to turn it off and can’t. And I want to not admit it, but it needs saying.
Just because I tell my feelings that they are being unreasonable doesn’t make them listen. They’re assholes like that. They want me to wallow in the muck inside my mind. The depression quicksand. Let it envelop me, give in to the crying, the dejected attitude, the woe is me, the we need more eggs but payday isn’t until next week and there is no such thing as money in the bank.
There are dishes in the sink. Laundry in baskets. And me. Sitting and staring at both. My husband is, I’m sure, tired of the funk, tired of hearing about what’s going wrong, frightened when I mention how inviting the river that runs alongside my office is, concerned that I’ve done Google searches about how many sleeping pills one needs to effectively, um, do the trick. What? I am not suicidal. I know how much I have to live for, how much I’m needed. That doesn’t make the thoughts and feelings disappear, though. Also, sleeping pills is so passé. There is just a pervasive feeling of uselessness, worthlessness, powerlessness, toomuchshittodoandIdon’tknowhowness. That doesn’t equate to suicide consideration. I’m not sitting around thinking about harming myself or my children. I don’t know how to make you understand the difference, to me, between considering and fleeting thoughts. Please don’t start calling me to see if I’m still alive. And don’t call the damn people on me. They’ll take my babies (if they can remember to visit) and then I’ll have to kill you instead of myself and either way my babies suffer. Don’t make me kill you.
Also, don’t be frightened to send your children to my house now. I’m not going to stab them. Or make them watch me stab myself. What I am describing is not continued sadness. Just a sadness that happens and sticks around awhile, dissipates, disappears, shows back up, rinse and repeat.
I visited my doctor recently to discuss lightheadedness and palpitations, NOT anxiety and sadness. She suggested that my intake of caffeine and alcohol were among the culprits for my symptoms.
Dr: What about alcohol? Do you drink?
Dr: How much?
Me: On a scale of?
Dr: What do you drink? Wine, beer?
Me: Um, tequila.
Me: Blank stare
Dr: OK, how many?
Me: Two, sometimes three. OK, four.
Dr: A day? How much at each sitting?
Me: A drink’s worth, silly. What do you mean how much?
Dr: 4 oz is considered a moderate and normal amount.
Me: How much is 4 oz?
Dr: Blank stare
Me: Use your thumb and index finger like I’m a child. It’s the maths. I can’t…
Dr: It’s not really math.
Me: It’s a number and I just can’t…
Dr: This much.
Me: (Aghast) And that’s “normal?”
Me: And where are all these abnormal, not really having a drink because that shit is like a thimble’s amount people so I can teach them how to properly erase one’s brain of one’s issues?
Dr: Well, has it been working to erase your issues?
Me: Until the next morning, yes.
I am frightened to take pills for (gasp!) depression (because Dr Google has officially told me I am depressed). Too frightened and embarrassed to suggest I may need something for the sadness, let alone actually fill a prescription. In a pharmacy. Because I’ve had a recurring dream where the lab tech yells out Herndon script for Prozac! (If you’ve never visited the CVS I use, please know this is NOT an exaggeration). Also, headache, nausea, diarrhea, insomnia, sweating, tremors, rash, seizures. Basically, I might need it to help me quell anxiety and sad feelings, but there’s a chance of anxiety and feelings of sadness while taking it and I will likely be that rare instance of death. So.
Believe me. This is not for sympathy or girl, me too’s. It’s simply a testament to dealing. With everything. Life. Marriage. Motherhood. Working outside the home. Having to wash my ass regularly because yes, that really is me I smell. All of these are things I signed up for. I knew what to expect. But is knowing how to handle it all innate? If so, I don’t have that gene. I KNOW that I need to pull myself up, but. I can’t seem to MAKE myself do it: put on my big girl panties. Also, nobody has done the fucking laundry so all the damn drawers are dirty.