Self, I have been obsessed with myself the past few days. I have looked at myself from so many angles that I feel like I have been in a 360 mirror spinning around – like a dog chasing its tail.  I say I have been obsessed, not from a prideful point of view. Not from an admiring point of view.  From a critical eye, but more from an observation point of view.  You have those moments when you realize you have to sit back and look.  Depression is so much about feel.  I feel sad, threatened, frightened, in darkness, evil, hurtful, alone, unloved, unworthy. Depression is never about looking, actually most of the time you want to hide, close your eyes and disappear. Opening the eyes is not natural when you are fighting, taking prescribed drugs and coping. It’s funny as I look at my list of feelings – they are all the opposite of what God is.
The fruit of the spirit of God is Love  it can expel and conquer our selfishness. In a “me” generation it is easy to see why Me Self is so easy to fall into–we even inject it into our spiritual life. “God helps those who help themselves” NOT in the bible. Self is a curse when it comes to our relationship with God. Praise the Lord, Jesus was sent to save us from ourselves. There was a time, though it seems long ago, but there was a time that my “self” held its hands up to praise the Lord, full of joy. (And in a Lutheran Church lifting hands higher than your shoulders is saying something  🙂 ) I think this depression has taken so much from me that there is not much self left…..and to surrender this ragged piece, that, wants what the world wants, that sometimes holds on to the darkness even when I really don’t want to. To give oneself to God fully seems impossible. I know I have a sinful nature and that only through belief in Jesus can I really accomplish it, I don’t see much of me left to give. A thought — maybe my acceptance of mental illness is based on the fact that I see and feel a difference from before to now. Maybe my rejection is because I haven’t grieved for the person I was. In print that seems ludicrous. In my heart I understand it. I was an amazing multi tasker! I could easily be doing 3 things at once– I can’t do that now. I have times when I lose my train of thought half way through a sentence. I did that more than once when I had my dr apt this week. I have always had great comprehension, Now I have to bounce things off people as a sound board so I know what something means. I’m not drilling myself into the ground it’s just the facts. Side effect of the drugs, and that is a truth I haven’t given much merit. The drugs push so much down, and have several side effects. I have taken them off the hook for blame– I need to give it back to them–they effect my brain just as much as the depression. The new Doctor this week said that I have developed some good coping strategies and need to learn more for acceptance….I don’t believe this is a life long condition– but for now I have to face reality.

Since I wrote the above, I finished work and went to my work out group I created at work. We work out to the Insanity Work Out DVD from Beachbody ( kinda of ironic isn’t it — the work out is called insanity!….come on its kinda funny!) Shawn T the main guy on the DVD is calling us out– telling us to come on, we can do this, try harder, dig deep, lets go, — major pep talk while we work ourselves into a sweaty mess. Insanity is hard-core– very cardo very push and pull against your body weight, its boot camp like– google you’ll see. I feel very empowered when I do it and I can control how I work out and I get off on it to be honest. As a teen I never really worked out much, now I love to push my body over the edge, to see what I can to physically. As I was working out with my group I had a light go on as I was finishing up the work out. Shawn T is drill sargenting us- I’m getting pumped up on it – even though I am drenched with sweat and pushing on. I realize one reason why I have a tough time accepting my depression. I push myself. I can physically do things now I never gave thought to in my 20’s. After two kids, I ran a half marathon, trained for it myself, done p90x twice, done lots of other physical stuff and considering I never did anything like this before, I am proud of myself, and love to push myself to see what I can do next.
That is why I can’t accept my depression. I feel like I am two people; one is invincible able to physically push myself to do so much. Mentally I fall flat! I have limits and issues and they make me feel vulnerable and fragile. I am two people in one.
That is my revelation for tonight — need to think about this more.  For now however  I have dinner at my sister-in-laws to night.  Look out that could be another 4 blogs in itself.

till next time……………..


Visit #2

Back at the therapist office.   I still don’t know how I feel about this.  I feel weird going, driving there, and waiting to see her.  I thought I was going to be late- traffic to the other side of the city was heavy, but I got there. No music this time. The TV was off or maybe someone else lost their mind and broke the DVD.  I managed to get up and read the information of Mood Disorders.  It was interesting but made me sad as I picked out the things that I have been feeling and thinking.  When we get in the office (and yes there is a couch- and you know because I have a weird sense of humour I said I am not laying down on it- she laughed, I figured that was a good sign, she could laugh) She asked how I was, I told her I was uncomfortable being there and I see talking to her as a sign of weakness in character.  She gave me her sad puppy dog look and told me she understands. I told her that was easy for her to say she understands, because she gets to sit in a chair not on a couch.  She commented, that I did come back so I can’t feel that uncomfortable. Darn she caught me in a line.  We continued to get to know each other discuss work, teen years, family, depression, then after 45 minutes of chatting and answering a thousand more questions, she gave me home work to do and sent me on my way.  I drove home in a fog.  Maybe my pride is getting in the way Maybe I am vain, but I felt depressed all the way home.

So for the past 36 hours I have been wondering why this bothers me so much.  Why I would never admit this to people I know, and not even want to discuss with my closest friends, who have been my support through all of this.  Part of this has to do with social conditioning. ( here comes my college sociology and psychology courses into play– who knew they would be useful)  When you think about TV, sitcoms, cartoons, movies, they always portray the flighty one, the inadequate  one, or the untrustworthy one as the one who has mental issues and goes to a therapist.  Think about it for a minute.  Goldie Hawn comes to mind in all the silly movies she has been in.  Think of every time a therapist is brought into a movie how is the person who needs them, portrayed.

I guess this is my blockage in getting past. This is the stereo type and negative image I have of this.  I think people will think less of me, not trust me, not consider me worth getting to know.  When I look back at my first blogs I believe this is what I said about depression in the first place.   I guess I am my own worst enemy.

But above all that, the real question is; and let’s be honest – the real question is not what my prejudices are but Do I need this.  I am feeling for the most part good.  A few little downers this week but nothing I can’t talk myself out of.  Eating a bit of an issue but still trying. I find a couple of nights I sleep,  a couple of nights I didn’t which makes it tough when you are tired.   I think back two weeks or so ago and think about how I felt and the pressing loneliness and I needed someone to talk to and the refusal to eat or associate with people, and sadness.  I need this. I need to lay the ground work while I am feeling good and see what tomorrow brings.  Maybe I will not need it.  Maybe I will be delivered from this depression. Maybe tomorrow I fall on my face of in a hole of despair but in the mean time I will purse this and do my homework and show up next week.

Lord I know you are with me every step of the way Yes you are the creator of everything.  Of me and all I have ever seen dreamt about or could imagine.  So Lord I thank you for all the good gifts you give me.  I thank you for the challenges in my life, you are always there to hold my hand and send me those who I need to help me.  I am not worthy of this Grace and Love and Protection but you do love me and give me all these gifts as you would any of your children. Thank you, my Heavenly Father   Amen

Waiting Room

So I sit in the waiting room, 20 minutes early.  I sit in front of a large window, the building is right beside the highway.  The highway is moving well, I am surprised how little time it took me to get to this side of the city.  The waiting room is behind glass doors the receptionist; who is gorgeous, is sitting at her desk on the other side of the glass.  I can’t help but look at her.  I love her hair.  Its pulled up in a beautiful bun  drawn back in a lovely sophisticated manner.  Her hair must be as long as mine, I am resisting  the urge to asking how she did it.   My side of the glass there is a play area behind me.  There must be a T.V. or something que’d up to play a movie.  It keeps playing the same theme music over and over and over again.  I am trying to zone out.  I am trying to concentrate on other things.  The traffic keeps moving along. I read all the truck signs, wonder what that one is carrying, or where that one is going, or wouldn’t you be embarrassed to be driving around with that slogan on the side of your truck.   Time is passing slowly.  I read the signs on the walls, resisting the urge to look again at the receptionist and analyze her hair.  She has seen me twice looking at her, not good.  I read the bristol board on the wall describing mood disorders.  Bipolar, depression, anxiety.   Its like sitting in an examining room looking at diagrams of the insides of the body and wondering if your aches and pains are one of the horrible things they are describing with an arrow.  This ugly spot is cancer!  Ok; back to the traffic.  I am trying to do three things at once.  One; look normal, not scared, second; don’t read the mood disorder descriptions, and three; don’t get up grab the DVD and rip out that disc and stomp on it cause the music is about to make me crazy.

I am waiting for my new therapist to greet me.  I keep looking out of the corner of my eye, receptionist, someone walking by- is that her– ugg, mind telling me don’t look.   Traffic.  Corner of eye, looking, ugly man, ugg, no mine is a woman.  Traffic.  I am losing my mind sitting here.  I feel like a caged animal sitting behind the glass.  Everyone looks at me as they walk by.  If it’s a waiting room where are all the people?  Or am I the only crazy one here today.

These are all irrational thoughts. But they are my thoughts- the thoughts of someone who is just a little anxious about what is about to happen.  I pray for God give me someone good.  I sit remembering the past year, how the hell did I get here?  I was a strong farm girl. I could handle anything.  If any of my family, Mother, Uncles, cousins, anyone knew I was sitting waiting to see a councilor they would laugh, tell me to go do some farm work and smarten up.  Too much time on my hands, thinking about stupid stuff, get to work.

Yet here I am watching the traffic. Wanting to take a bat to the DVD now- but I saw anpatient transport van in the parking lot, so I am thinking, not a good sign, what mental institute does that one belong to?? If I smash the DVD they will see me as aggressive– when No I can’t stand the stupid music. This thought makes me laugh, I can picture myself white jacket in a rubber room – explaining to the doctors “really I’m crazy I just hear the same song 58 times and couldn’t handle it anymore.  Why does this make me laugh- its like something from a sitcom, and by the way if this is a waiting room at a Family Counciling centre wouldn’t they have calming yoga type music?? I’m just saying! ! ! ! ! !

So I meet her.  She is nice and makes me feel at ease, but I am still conscious of the fact that I have gone from normal to depressed, to drugs, to a therapist.

She takes down my information and after an hour of questions about my husband my kids my child hood I leave.

What do I think about all this ? I am not sure yet.  She tells me I am brave to be there I am sure she tells everyone that.   Her body language when I was telling her my father has passed was like she was about to cry.  A little over the top, I almost said, “”hey I got over it, relax that was 15 years ago”    I do know about this.  I am still feeling good, and maybe that is why I am feeling weird about this.   It might be easier if I was sad or mad or feeling anything else but good.

I go back next week, we will see where this leads to.

Dear Lord my God you lead me to this place, you lead me to these people.  I pray that you lead me down the road in this journey never to leave me always holding my hand.  I give you all of this and ask for help in the powerful name of Jesus Christ.  Amen