Sunday, March 30, 2008

Go AWAY, Old Self!

This last week has been a wave of peaks and valleys. All I can do is tell myself to take it one day at a time. Sometimes one hour at a time. AA in their 12-step program knew what they were talking about when developing this principle. It can be applied to all walks of life, really. When you're on the stress train, best to take a deep breath, cool your jets and remember ...baby steps, baby steps.

I can be somewhat impulsive emotionally, which is not always a good thing. Actually frequently a bad thing when raising children. Drama Queens are better on stage than in the home. However, it is my modis operandi and I am working on it. It's my stuff. I used to be plagued with not infrequent depressions. They would descend on me as if a horsehair blanket had been laid across my shoulders. Rather itchy and heavy to carry. Yet, now those depressions almost seem frivolous. And I don't mean to make light of depression, because I am very conscious of the fact that people have legitimate, debilitating depressions. And it is a serious illness. But, right now I am mocking myself a bit, because what exactly were these depressions about?

  • I am still a waitress in a Honky Tonk and my life is going nowhere. {I should be on Broadway.}

  • I feel fat today. I don't want to dress up like Fifi Le French Maid. {I wish I would meet someone...}

  • My boyfriend of the moment is having moments with someone else. {My heart is broken... Fuck him!... NEXT!}

  • My husband doesn't understand me and does he leave the toilet seat up ON PURPOSE? {Does he really hate me?}

  • I HATE this office job. I should be doing something creative. When, oh when...will we have a baby? {If people here only knew I used to dress up in fishnets...}

  • I have 2 babies under 1, who are not twins, and this was what I wanted wasn't it? {Of course it is, it is...IT IS...not exactly...BUT, no regrets...except occasionally when I identify with Sylvia Plath and that oven looks tempting.}

  • Suddenly, I'm not the one being looked at anymore... {But that's OK, isn't it? Isn't it? It is who I am INSIDE that's important. I don't want my identity to be wrapped up in what I look like. I'm a feminist for GOD'S SAKE!}

  • There is something missing and I don't know what it is... ...unfortunately, I still get that one occasionally - although, blogging has really blasted its way into my heart and soul and the fact that I'm writing almost everyday is just...cool. Even if it is blather on some days, I am taking the time and making the time to blather. It is the act of writing, dipping my quill in ink, that is powerful.
No, these days the fog of depression that descends is rare. But, when it arrives it always catches me off guard. As if there's an unexpected knocking on my door, I go to answer it, and it is my old self, yet AGAIN. Go AWAY, Old Self! You are NOT welcome here. The blackness always surprises me with its insidious talent for creeping and crawling into my psyche. I used to think that someday it would be gone for good - that it was a matter of maturity on my part. Now I am beginning to think that it will always be with me. Perhaps it is a way of checking in, taking stock, an opportunity for change...


NOTE: No, the picture above is not me. I use non-running mascara. However, isn't that hat just to DIE FOR!!?


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30 comments:

jennifer h said...

You could totally pull off wearing that hat.

Ah, the valleys. Perhaps we've met there? I laugh at some of the things that used to knock me on my backside in my 20s. Serious then, yes, but nothing compared to the heavier stuff that came along later.

These days, the last one in your list shows up quite a bit. But I agree, writing every day does help.

Keep dipping your quill.

Jen said...

I think we are very similar. I think we are always striving for more, which can be a good thing, because it drives us to act, but it can be a really bad thing, because we are never completely satisfied.

Madge said...

i think so many of us can relate to this, and that's what's so great about blogging. girl, i have so been there. motherhood has completely slowed down my depressive states, or i just put them on the back burner to take care of the little ones, i don't know which it is.

can i get off this train?

Madge said...

i think so many of us can relate to this, and that's what's so great about blogging. girl, i have so been there. motherhood has completely slowed down my depressive states, or i just put them on the back burner to take care of the little ones, i don't know which it is.

can i get off this train?

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

Dealing with it--instead of letting it deal with you; that sounds like what you're doing. I hope your equilibrium is restored soon.

beachmom said...

I touched on so many of the item on your list it is frightening! Obviously, when we (I) begin to think we (I) are the only ones who deal with this "stuff" we (I) are reminded that there are others who have been there, done that ... and look at you - have come out beautifully in the past and will do so again!

Hang in there ... I love the word equilibrium that Jenn used above, it will return!!

Mrs. G. said...

Hot bubble baths are soothing-try to keep reminding yourself that this too shall pass. Also, hate to mention it, but exercise has helped me put a funk behind me faster. Be nice to yourself.

stephanie said...

Wow, I so get it.

I'm going to use just those words "Go away, Old Self" as a mantra...Thanks!

Sending you positive New Self thoughts :)

katydidnot said...

i'm with you. i get stuck in my head. and anyone should feel better wearing that hat.

liv said...

ugh. i feel ya. *sigh*

Janet said...

Having suffered from continuous depression for about 15 years (age 13 to 28 or thereabouts) and periodically thereafter (though it seems to be staved off), I don't think that any depression is trivial. Everyone has their individual threshold, especially when we're young. Mine was triggered by the suicide of a friend, but there were definitely the boyfriends, dead-end jobs, lack of finances. And I just wrote on Misc. Mum's blog that I love Sylvia Plath and understand her and would have had my own head in the oven had it not been electric. Children are fascinating beings. Even when you desperately want them, sometimes that day-to-day constant demanding of attention can definitely get to you. I think you're right - bouts of occasional depression can definitely be a way to take stock. And I know blogging has helped me. I'm not as good a writer as all the other bloggers I read, but since that's not what I'm about anymore (I still want to be on Broadway though) I use the blog more as a fun place to be.
Speaking of fun places to be, I had a lovely dream about Viggo last night (no, not that lovely) and I was very annoyed when my precious William woke me up from it. {sigh}

Not Your Regular Mini Van Mom said...

Hi, thanks for stopping into my blog! I can relate to your post...except my boys actually are twins, lol.

Don Mills Diva said...

I really felt this post - I am taking life day by day these days and it just sucks sometimes... waiting for equilibrium to return indeed...

Lisa Milton said...

*sigh*

Depression, or even the blues can knock the wind out of you.

Writing helps. I also like to long, long walks - and no this isn't a personal ad - and I *talk* to myself.

(I told myself, nearly every hour, over & over again, that this long hard week would soon end. And guess what? It did.)

Take care of yourself...

Lisa Milton said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Lisa Milton said...

*sigh*

Depression, or even the blues can knock the wind out of you.

Writing helps. I also like to long, long walks - and no this isn't a personal ad - and I *talk* to myself.

(I told myself, nearly every hour, over & over again, that this long hard week would soon end. And guess what? It did.)

Take care of yourself...

Mighty Morphin' Mama said...

Just know that you are not walking alone. You are aware of what is going on and being proactive, you are way ahead of the game.
I pray it is short-lived for you.

flutter said...

Ok seriously if I could look that great crying, I would do it all the time.

Damn it, I guess I have to try to be happy....

Rima said...

I often feel guilty about getting depressed over what I consider to be frivolous things, because I KNOW that I lead a pretty charmed life. But that's just it - it's life, it ebbs and flows and the "misery scale" is all relative. If you feel the pain, then it's real, right?

happygeek said...

I love your last line.
If we can even take the dark days and use them to grow how much better would we be?
With you on the hat.
Probably wouldn't work with yoga pants though eh?

Kellan said...

Life is ups and downs. I have experienced a bit of a down time lately, which makes me appreciate the up times - that is what it is all about!

Thanks for coming by and leaving the kind well wishes - so nice to see you. I'll see you soon - take care - Kellan

HRH said...

You have said beautifully what I have lived and not able to express (minus the fishnets and a few other exciting things)...

Angie said...

Yes, old self is not welcome here either. Mostly, for me, the larger, fatter old self. The old happy, carefree self is welcome anytime she wishes.

KEEP BELIEVING

Minnesota Matron said...

I had a valley a couple of days ago, sitting in my brother's expensive house, considering his want for nothing (genuinely very very good) life. And, I did committed the Sin: compared.

These things pass. The very things that can bring us down hold what's uplifting. That's not meant to be a parable or trite or a truism, but a lesson I've actually learned.

Kalynne Pudner said...

Sylvia rocks. I discovered her in college, her and Annie Dillon. Barbies and Speed...literally speaking.

BTW, it is I whom your Sitemeter has clocked at 2 1/2 hours and counting. I came home to 121 items on my reader, and I opened all the ones I want to actually read before I clear it out. Then I went to Sam's Club for our weekly $349 grocery shopping trip and left them that way.

Yup. Three hundred forty-nine dollars worth of groceries for one week. I think I'm going to go pop myself some Sylvia Plath.

Lisa said...

I think we all have those valleys. It's so hard to be there but it makes the time on top of the mountain that much more wonderful.
Yes--the hat is to die for:)

phd in yogurtry said...

These days I'm looked at but its "gads, how much more thigh can she squeeze into those exercise shorts?" I can seriously relate to your depressive themes. Its a blessing and a curse to be full of thoughts and emotions, to be wanting so much more from life than clearing away the breakfast dishes and picking up dirty socks from under the dust bunny collector known as couch.

Rachel Inbar said...

I've been out of it for a while, new baby & all... I love the new design :-)

About depression, I only know how lucky I am not to really understand what it's all about. Sounds as if you've got things pretty much under control - at least most of the time - and that's a big achievement too.

Tootsie Farklepants said...

I think we all have these moments. Chin up!

Suzanne said...

I wonder if there's something in the atmosphere, or a full moon, or...but for the past week I've been battling a bit of the blues and as such haven't posted...today I finally got back into it.

But I wonder what causes these waves?

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