Saturday, April 25, 2015


Well, i got a new-to-me car. And got my old car fixed. And I'm exhausted.

The car search distracted me from my regular depression and anxiety. So now that I'm done, my old, familiar thoughts slowly filter back. At first they are like going back home or getting my old car back. They are normal, and i can actually recognize my life with them around. Then they slowly shift back to being irritating. That's just depressed thinking. Or, that's just my anxiety. Which leads to my more typical weariness as opposed to the weariness of finding and bargaining for a car, a situation that i knew would bring stress to even the most mentally healthy person out there.

This morning, i got that trembly feeling that sometimes accompanies medication changes (or even taking medication late, which could be the explanation this time since i slept in). I cold hold my relaxed hand up and watch my fingers move slightly of their own accord. I find this exhausting. Maybe because i fight it, maybe because moving that much (even in tiny movements) uses up more energy.

My counselor has suggested i re-think through some stressful events and losses of my past. Do more "processing" and some grieving. Which, by the way, i tried for years after the events before slowly giving up on the idea. Somehow, i could never quite resolve the issues, at least not permanently. Thinking back didn't seem to help enough to be worth it. And even when i asked "professionals" how to "get over it," they didn't know. Maybe because it is more of a process than an accomplishment.

Of course, there is also the issue of my deeper depression bouts overshadowing it both in immediacy and in depth of pain.

So who knows. I usually prefer more cognitive therapy that doesn't depend on remembering and "dealing with" the past. But it is pretty undeniable that many past still influences my present. Just watch me freak out at church some Sunday (which actually hasn't happened as much lately, not to mention the fact that I'm pretty sure i hide it pretty well) and you'll know my past still effects my present. So maybe this time, visiting the past will help. If not, well, at least i can amuse myself by retelling stories from my past (even sad ones usually have an entertaining side).

Sunday, April 12, 2015

car trouble

I'm waiting to feel hungry for supper, but i keep eating more Easter candy. Somehow i think I'm working against myself here.

The latest SNRI might possibly be working. It for sure seems to make me tired and more able to fall asleep.

And then there is the monkey wrench. My dear old car broke. To the unsafe-to-drive point. To the point where the mechanic and my brother-in-law both suggest i begin looking for a new car.

Now, my car is a very important part of my normal. It gives me the freedom to leave my apartment whenever i choose. It carries a collection of items that i either never brought into my apartment or that i intentionally keep in my car in case i need them while I'm out.

But I'm looking to replace my car now. So part of me wants to search for this car with the tenacity of an obsessive compulsion.and another part of me wants to forget about it (avoidance, anyone?). And instead, I'm trying to strike a balance between searching for a car and giving myself time to relax and unwind.

It really messed with my plans for this weekend; i was going to spend it feeling slightly miserable from medication dose increase side effects. But all the stress associated with finding a newer car has really blurred the lines between side effects and stress effects.

And then, i didn't go to church tonight. I went this morning, first to church, then to bible study (it was afternoon by then). But tonight? I wanted to sit on my couch and search for cars and then take it easy. So i did.

And you want to guess what the critical part of me thinks of that? Well, maybe i would have had a very encouraging conversation if i had gone to church this evening, and now I'm out an encouraging conversation. Maybe work will be harder tomorrow because i didn't go to church tonight. And maybe I'll be extra stressed out this week because i looked for cars on Sunday. And maybe...

Maybe I'm running out of reasonable unpleasant consequences for how i spent my Sunday.

My thoughts are dancing on the fence between catastrophizing and chilling out. Maybe i shouldn't make such a big deal out of how i spend my Sunday and my money (i.e. trying to make the most responsible car choice with my money, particularly trying to avoid any possibly sinful choices, like borrowing money to get a good car, which I'm pretty sure is not a sin, but what if it is?)

P.S. My scrupulosity begs you to offer me reassurance, so please don't.

P.P.S. Maybe it isn't scrupulosity. Maybe i just have trouble believing anything different from things i picked up as a kid. Nonetheless, reassurance isn't likely to help either situation.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter, depression, and closeness (or lack thereof) with God

Words from Bill Gaither's song, "Because He Lives," are pretty popular among my Facebook friends right now. "Because he lives I can face tomorrow..." Basically, if i was a believer without depression or anxiety, it would be a lovely song. It still is a lovely song, but if I were to rewrite it today, it would go more like, " 'Because He Lives,' i will drag myself out of bed tomorrow even when i won't want to. Because he lives, I'll choose to keep putting one foot in front of the other, however slowly, but i won't quit, at least not permanently. And I'm going to trust Him despite all my feelings to the contrary and even feeling mad at Him, knowing that on some unforeseeable day in the future, either here or in heaven, my depression will lift and I'll be better able to appreciate that Jesus is alive again. I think you would have to turn it into a rap song to fit all those words in there.

Actually, I've had a pretty good day. I went shopping for some supplies for my classroom. (Embarrassing story; yesterday i went to a training about how to plan better with the goal of being a better early childhood teacher, and i ended up crying. At a 3hr training/class with people i didn't even know! Talk about being overly emotional! Depression is really taking its toll... Along with the stress of trying to be a better and better teacher...) Back to today, i had a pleasant time shopping, but i ended up exhausted. And i am not willing to let myself take a nap because that could make it hard to fall asleep tonight (i took a nap yesterday and then took a long time to fall asleep last night). So I'm doing well, but exhausted.

One more subject; certain people around me talk about how hard times bring them closer to God. This is frustrating when i apply it too depression, because in my opinion, depression is a relationship inhibitor, not a relationship builder. And besides, it can give me a foggy mind. One lady tried to explain it to me, saying that when people come to the end of themselves, then they are more open to God. That makes a little sense; maybe if my life was going great, i would not be as interested in God. But i don't think that is always the case! Maybe when the depression is gone, I'll feel closer to God than i would have otherwise. For now, though, depression is clouding my mind and seems rather unhelpful. If i want depressed, i could do more. I would have more energy for teaching. I'd have more energy for helping at church...

Rabbit trail time! People don't seem to get that i need to take a break from leading music at church because of how severe my depression is. Well, maybe some do, and maybe those that don't seem to are really just wanting me to know I'm wanted. But i get the impression people are thinking, maybe if she helps lead music, her depression will get better. May i suggest that said depression might also get worse? My depression seems at least somewhat stress-related, and leading music is something i actually can say no to.

Rabbit trail over, but I've been thoroughly side-tracked. Here is wishing you a holiday with at least as glimmer of light, hope, and peace.