I guess I could look at it as a strength… my ability to keep going despite the desperate feeling of just wanting to hide.
I woke up suddenly at 3:45am, not surprising given my frame of mind yesterday. It was a familiar place: early morning anxiety, unable to fall asleep and completely wired on my weaknesses, poor judgments and regrets. Fuck.
It had been a while but fortunately I know what to do. Grab my duvet, head to the living room, find a documentary online to watch and surrender. I’m anxious, I’m ruminating and generally feeling shitty. The monster has taken over and only time can rid him of my mind. No sense in trying to fight it.
Fortunately, it’s Friday and I’ve got 2 days of respite coming up.
I don’t know what the DSM would call today.
It’s like I couldn’t think, couldn’t understand. My mind was sluggish and unable to make vital connections that lead to verbal comprehension. I saw the letters, I saw the words but I couldn’t form the meanings in my head.
I don’t have ADHD apparently. I’m not developmentally disabled. But clearly my working memory, problem-solving skills and verbal comprehension are well below others.
My boss could not have been more clear. Why didn’t I get it?
The crazy shitty thoughts come back… you suck, you’re a loser, you’re never going to succeed…
They’re so loud, so real, it’s like another entity (not human, more like gremlin, monster-like) has taken over my brain and my body. It’s been a while, and now they’re back. It seems I’ve rolled out the welcome mat.
I had too much sugar last night, and this morning I felt like shit, like I was hungover. I felt sad, moody and I wanted to leave the office by 8:30am.
So, was I really depressed or was it just a chemical reaction?
It’s Saturday morning and I have 2 glorious days off work. All I want to do is sit in front of the computer and get lost for hours. Living on my own means I can completely waste the day without anyone knowing.
This week, I don’t. I eventually extract myself from the book or the computer, I clean the apartment and do some chores. I’m finished by noon.
I don’t like cleaning, nor do I like doing silly, albeit necessary, errands. And, braving the Saturday crowds can sometimes annoy me. I would much rather be on the couch and do nothing.
However, I am rewarded with a temporary moment of warm fuzzy feeling when I see a to-do list ticked off and a clean apartment. That warm fuzzy feeling is greater than the good feeling I get aimlessly surfing the internet for hours.
Chores > surfing
Moving and doing simple things is good for the depressed. Endorphins are not going to flood the system and rid you of that shitty feeling that permeates your soul. No, it’s not that dramatic. If anything, it might provide a momentary sense of relief, of pride maybe. A moment of respite. What a treat. A break.
So, try it. Make a to-do list – even if it has two items on your list, like move dishes from desk to sink and put the newspaper in the recycle bin – and tick it off. It might feel good. Even if it’s just for a moment.
Don’t worry, that lightbulb can wait another week.