Tuesday, January 25, 2011

So if I'm not already in the territory of depression, I'm certainly in the outskirts of the area. The symptoms are easily recognizable at this point: dazed, tired and distracted all day but becoming wide awake at bedtime, not hungry (but still getting that sugar drop when I skip meals), lack of sex drive, generalized anxiety and vivd, awful dreams. All in all, I feel like i'm just barely making it through the day and accomplishing all my commitments, but only just. Thank god I got that day planner. I honestly don't know what's going to happen if it gets worse- at this point my mistakes at work are few and easily explained, but there's no garantee it'll stay that way.

At this point I've dealt with depression enough times to know what needs to happen in order for me to pull out of it. I've actually got a standard set of "guidelines for people dealing with depression" that I tell my friends, when they're also feeling sad and blue: Exercise. Eat right. Get enough sleep. Depression is a condition with physical effects, and just as you wouldn't beat yourself up for not being to run a marathon with a sprained ankle, so you shouldn't beat yourself up for not being able to accomplish as much while depressed. Be kind to yourself. Depression's mechanisms feed itself, and unless you make a conscious effort to pull yourself out of it, it will likely get worse before it gets better. Even if you try, it may still get worse before it gets better. Check out medication and see if it's right for you. Check out therapy and see if it's right for you.

And even though I can look back and say, yes, this has been a long and deeply crappy year in many respects and being depressed at the end of it is a pretty reasonable response, it is still so frustrating to be back here. When I left Jlem I had finished off 5 years of therapy. I was going towards a fresh start, after having aquired new tools with which to deal with stress and anxiety. And here I am, back again.

It's not that I failed (and I have to keep reminding myself of that, since in my low state it's very easy to see it like that). But I had hoped that I would do better.


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