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Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Depression with a Side of Anxiety

I'm gonna have to stop writing about depression for a while. It's making me depressed. One thing this journaling has done is clarify why I am now determined to seek help both professional and relational and do things differently. 

In the past 24 years, my depressive episodes have been mostly that - depressive. No energy, no hope, no enjoyment of life. Hang around and slog through and wait for the next wave of sand. That's my lot. 

A couple of years ago, life circumstances came together in such a way to frighten me. Really scare the bejeezus out of me for a short time. I couldn't breathe, couldn't eat, had trouble sleeping, the works. The circumstances shifted, the fear subsided and I went on with my normal depression. It was bad but it was the bad I live with daily. 

A month ago, the terror returned and brought friends. The trigger was pretty small but the reaction was enormous. I've lost 13 pounds in five weeks from not being able to eat. I couldn't catch my breath when sitting or lying down. My heart would increase from 50 to 90 beats a minute for no obvious reason. And I couldn't make it stop. I couldn't do anything to stop it. My depression coping skills were inadequate. God wasn't doing anything. I was trapped between hopelessness and fear that the hopelessness would never stop and it was my fault to boot. 

I am mostly through it for the moment. Circumstances have changed. I am eating and able to breathe normally most of the time. But I cannot - I will not - allow that loss of control to happen again if I can do anything to stop it. I do mean anything. Electro shock is on the table. Drugs are on the table. If I thought there was a chance in Hell alcohol would have helped instead of making it worse, I would be drinking Scotch while I write this. 

It is clear to me I have no coping resources left. I have run myself out of mental health and I will need more than me to regain what I've lost. If I can. Two years after my nervous breakdown, I remember thinking "Oh, this is it. This is as good as I will feel from now on. It's not what I was, but it's better than nothing." Which, of course, is fodder for more depression. 

Anyway, enjoy your Scotch or Scotch-equivalent. I'll try to write some happy things for a while. 

Keep the faith. 

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