Depression Stopping By

I wrote about depression a few days ago, and it was a funny thing.  Rereading the post I thought to myself, “wow, I’m feeling pretty good.”  I even wrote that I hadn’t suffered a bout of depression since I got married.  Famous last words. Well, I’ve learned my lesson beacuse it seems to have reared it’s very ugly head over the past few days.

Perhaps it’s the death of my grandfather, making me realize life is short.  Perhaps it was getting a glimpse of what living my dream life would feel like.  Then heading back to work on Monday and having reality hit me hard in the face, like an iron. Perhaps it’s hormones, that make me blue and irritable and unstable – pretty much one quarter of my life.

I’ve been feeling dragged down, teetering on the edge of falling back into a dark, black hole.  I have an issue running from emotions.  There are only two things that happen when you run from emotions. One – you speed away from them and they loom larger and larger in your rearview mirror until they’re so scary you can’t keep your eyes on the road any longer and you crash. Two – you ignore them completely and drive along la-di-da until a cement highway divider of emotions comes out of nowhere and you crash into at 60 miles an hour, your car wrenched in two right down the middle.

This is an attempt to just sit, and say hey big scary depressive feelings.  I see you.  I know you lie to me, and you’re probably going to shove me down into that black, hole when I’ve got my back turned. But I’m alright, I got this.  I’ve climbed out of the hole many times, and I get better and better at it each time I have to.  (Note: my depression is usually of the mild variety and I haven’t had to go on medication.)  There are a number of things that help me keep depression at bay:

  • Fresh air and sunlight
  • Exercise
  • Music
  • Keeping the house clean
  • Eating well
  • Ditching alchohol
  • Journaling

I feel like my insides have been vaccuumed out, and there’s nothing inside.  I will force myself to go through the  motions of taking good care of myself, no matter how pointless it feels. These little actions add up overtime I know, and eventually help me find my way out of the fog.

Unhooking

My grandfather passed away on Wednesday.  I loved him, with all of his imperfections, and I was lucky to know that he loved me too.  He said goodbye to me just in case, a few months ago.  “I love you sweetheart.”  A phrase I’d only heard a handful of times in my life, and all the more meaningful for it.

I’ve been able to accept his death pretty easily. It makes me feel cold-hearted and callous.  He was 90 years old, and he had a wonderful life and family to show for all of those years.  In the end his body couldn’t keep up with him.  In the last days he was in pain.  He couldn’t bare to have a blanket touch his skin.  The nurses hung it above him from strings on the ceiling.  I felt his spirit the night after he passed, I had this strange feeling that he’d soared around to each of our homes to given us one last wink to make sure we were okay.

When I felt his wink, I felt him telling me, enjoy every minute kid.   I’m grateful for the reminder that each day we’re granted is a gift.  I’ve been chasing my tail, running in circles at work.  Trying to please one boss and then another.  Struggling under the insurmountable weight of a heap of deadlines, ignoring my husband, ignoring my passions, ignoring my health.  This gave me a chance to press pause, and pour my energy into what matters to me, and ignore the absurd “fire drills” at work. (Don’t even get me started on corporate jargon.”)

I unhooked. I let go. And I felt my spirit soar, unencumbered by the obligations I’d chained myself too.  It’s my choice how much I let them run my life.  Unhooking from what doesn’t really matter to you in the long-run frees you. It feels good to be free.