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Half an hour, and completely terrified - The Fucking Bluebird of Goddamn Happiness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Zoethe

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Half an hour, and completely terrified [May. 24th, 2011|10:15 am]
Zoethe
Guys, I'm going to the doctor today. This is huge for me. Because of my depression, I've been hiding in in a steadily deteriorating state, growing so inert that some days I feel cast in amber.

Today I'm going to my physician and doing something that's damned near impossible for me: asking for help. I know my cholesterol level is high, I have continued to gain weight, my exercise has been almost nonexistent, and I'm deeply depressed - not the "I'm sad and miserable and constantly crying" depressed, but the "I don't need the world; I can just hole up here in a dark room and sleep" depressed. Which is harder for me to recognize and acknowledge as genuine depression. After all, with enough motivation I can overcome my inertia for a while and I still enjoy some things in life. But I also feel like half this year has slipped away while I've been mostly asleep.

So I need to make changes. Changes for my physical health and changes for my mental health. I've fallen into appallingly bad eating patterns because food is comforting - even though I know that comfort is ephemeral. I haven't been doing anything creative, because it's too much effort. I think about getting out my bike, but somehow never do it.

I avoid journaling, because I find myself repugnant just now and why should I burden all of you with this.

See, I'm supposed to be with-it and together and capable. And in my mind you guys must only like me for those qualities. So if I'm not those things, then I disappoint people - people here, my family and loves, my friends. I don't believe I'm likable just for me, only for what I can give.

I feel like I'm a fake, and trying to hide being a fake. And that has made me alternate between apathetic and cranky. I'm sure I've hurt people's feelings with some abrupt and cantankerous comments that weren't deserved. If I owe you an apology, please tell me so that I can try to make amends.

Mostly right now, I'm scared. I'm scared that I won't be able to make the changes that I need to make to improve my life and health. I'm scared because right now every part of me is screaming "I don't WANNA!!! I wanna eat Cheetos and melt into the couch." I'm scared that I'll make changes and then backslide again and it will all be worse.

Now it's time to get in the car and go to the doctor. And I'm scared of doing that and posting this. But I'm going to do both.
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[User Picture]From: firebirdgrrl
2011-05-24 02:18 pm (UTC)
Many good thoughts for you. You're doing a great job already.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-24 11:55 pm (UTC)
I'm making progress. It's just difficult to feel like I'm having to keep doing things over and over again.

I guess that's the definition of insanity.
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[User Picture]From: mamculuna
2011-05-24 02:21 pm (UTC)
I'm so glad you have the strength and courage to realize that change is possible. I hope each little step makes the next one possible for you.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:00 am (UTC)
Two steps today: the doctor, and making an appointment with a therapist. It feels a bit like jumping off a cliff with the expectation of flight.
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[User Picture]From: unmutual
2011-05-24 02:25 pm (UTC)
Thinking good thoughts your way.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:04 am (UTC)
Thank you.
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[User Picture]From: madlori
2011-05-24 02:28 pm (UTC)
Gini, I could have written this entry. Not so much the depression bits but the difficulties in asking for professional help, and the identification with having my Shit Together. I finally decided about two and a half years ago to seek help myself for my weight problem, which I've had my whole life. I decided to have gastric bypass surgery. That option isn't for everyone but it's been incredible for me and it's reshaped my life and I am now someone who can moderate her eating and hikes and exercises and fits into places and has fantastic blood pressure and good blood numbers across the board.

I'm also a huge proponent of food journaling. That's the only thing that helped me lose weight before I had surgery.

You're strong, you can make the changes. The key is not to go overboard and try to do too much too fast. The most important thing about any lifestyle change is that it is maintainable. Make modest changes, and once you've got the hang of that, make a few more.

I'm not an expert but I have lots of experience. I'd be happy to talk privately about what's worked for me and my surgical experience if it would be helpful.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:08 am (UTC)
Thank you so much for these insights. I will definitely keep you in mind for help!
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[User Picture]From: pachamama
2011-05-24 02:31 pm (UTC)
You are very brave to be taking these steps. You feel like you're a fake, but you clearly are fundamentally at a deep level "with-it and together and capable" because you are doing what you need to do to care for and heal yourself. I know it doesn't feel that way right now, but truth is, I like you more for this, not less. Courage isn't being unafraid; courage is being really scared and doing it anyway. You are courageous. Good luck! I hope they can give you the help you need.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:13 am (UTC)
Thank you. I feel like I've been very brave today, but worried about keeping it up.
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[User Picture]From: hooloovooo
2011-05-24 02:32 pm (UTC)
I wish I didn't relate so well to everything you've said here. I was already feeling like that before all of our recent stress, now it feels like a good day if I manage to do anything at all. Your kitchen remodel and whatnot is probably not helping matters for you either, even though the end result will be great.

For what it's worth, we love you even when you aren't feeling at your best, and I know that you can and will be able to overcome this. You've already taken the hardest step. Let me know if I/we can help in any way.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:17 am (UTC)
Just keep being good friends. It's all I can think of now, though I promise to ask for more if I think of something.

And thanks, dear.
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[User Picture]From: darthfox
2011-05-24 02:35 pm (UTC)
I do know how you feel - I recognize the hiding-from-my-own-incompetence all too well, lately. Well done seeking help. That is a brave and necessary step.

I'd give you a hug if you were nearby. Good luck.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:18 am (UTC)
It's nice to know we're not alone, isn't it? Thank you for being there.
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[User Picture]From: littlebuhnee
2011-05-24 02:36 pm (UTC)
Best of luck today. Just taking this first step makes you incredibly brave in my eyes. *HUGS*
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:19 am (UTC)
Thank you, dear.
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[User Picture]From: sammiantha
2011-05-24 02:39 pm (UTC)
Your entry sounds so very much like one of my own from November last year. Like you I felt I wasn't classically depressed, my condition was more defined by a complete lack of motivation for anything at all - exercise, creativity, even being awake and out of bed in general. I was making myself do the things that I had always done, but I wasn't feeling them at all. I waited far too long to do something about it. I am on the mend now but I still have work to do.

Well done for recognising it and taking steps, and thank you for being brave enough to share it.

I know that this entry isn't a plea of 'Tell me I'm awesome' but I shall end with my reasons for liking you anyway. You are on my friends list because you are interesting, and many of your entries have ammused, inspired or entertained me. I am with you all the way.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:22 am (UTC)
Yes, that's it exactly. And what I want to get past. I want to enjoy again, instead of time just passing passing passing.
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[User Picture]From: aiela
2011-05-24 02:43 pm (UTC)
Love you.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:23 am (UTC)
Love you, too.
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[User Picture]From: bart_calendar
2011-05-24 02:43 pm (UTC)
One of the most helpful things my shrink said to me is "everyone feels like a fake. You are not alone."

And the thing is, she's right.

While Camus and Sartre are wrong about many, many things, we are all essentially strangers only known by ourselves and the image we give out to the world is something different and distorted from what we really are inside.

That's not a bad thing. All the world's a stage and all the men and women are merely players.

What's important to understand is that unlike the theater you can change roles at any time. You don't have to be Zoethe or Gini, you can become anyone you like at any time. And, when you put on your new mask you'll feel like you've beaten those bad brain chemicals that from time to time fuck up people like you and I and make us feel miscast.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:25 am (UTC)
It's scary to think of who I might be. I mostly like me, I think.
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[User Picture]From: alpha_surfing
2011-05-24 02:47 pm (UTC)
Thank you for this entry.
This post of yours makes you feel more real (and kindred) to me than ever.

I've quietly admired you via LJ for years, and even more so now, for your candor and courage, to write about this and to seek help. I think as I read your entry, to hell with "giving" for awhile- You're mere existence is a gift. You're very likeable and valuable to so many, even in your despair.
Try to be kind to yourself, the way you would be kind to any suffering person.

Sending you peace and hope.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:32 am (UTC)
Thank you. I'm kind of gobsmacked at being admired. I just write, y'know?

You've made me feel better. Much appreciated.
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[User Picture]From: jfargo
2011-05-24 02:55 pm (UTC)
You're doing the right thing. I know I'm just one in a throng of people to say this but I know how hard it is to get up out from that place and realize you need help; or rather it's not difficult to realize you need help but when you're in that place it's a struggle to actually get up and get the help you need.

I know, I've been there. Sometimes I'm definitely still there.

You are an amazing woman and I have faith in you that you will be able to control this. Asking for help is a good first step.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:33 am (UTC)
Thanks, and you know you're always welcome here - once we're entertaining again!
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[User Picture]From: firerose10
2011-05-24 02:57 pm (UTC)
I've been in te same position - but mine wasn't classical depression either - it was angry depression. It wasn't until my hubby and kid BOTH asked me to get some help that I recognized how apathetic and angry I had become. Asking for help has gotten easier for me - I call it going in for a "tune up" - ever since I completed a decades worth of therapy and medications and MASSIVE life changes (Hello divorce!). But it is still hard to admit I am not a capable, independent woman with my shit together. YOU CAN DO IT!! I have a lot of faith in your ability to help yourself, along with assistance and pointers from the shrink.

And also, I would enjoy seeing you journal about this process and where you are now - I don't follow you and Ferret for your great moods, constant humour, or other upbeat things - I follow you both because I LIKE the people you are, with amazing insights, an inspiring relationship, and a complete relate-ability no matter the situation.

And, I second the offer that if you ever want to talk privately with someone who has gone through the ups and downs of weight loss surgery, severe depression, GAD, being permanently disabled, PTSD, and other mental, physical, and social issues - feel free to contact me anytime. Soon we will be closer together and I plan on coming to hang out with you and the ferret, to help cement the strong friendship I pray continues to develop....
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:44 am (UTC)
I am hoping that one of the things that comes out of this is that I start journaling again regularly. If that's the case, you will definitely be hearing about this in my journal.

And any insights you have are most welcome. I may be contacting you!
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[User Picture]From: kibbles
2011-05-24 03:00 pm (UTC)
Even if you don't have faith in yourself, and are scared, you have the most amazing team out there. It's something I learned to accept over the years, and even embrace. The support around me.

I didn't even LOOK at the comments, and I know you've got it. And not just 'internet support' which, let me tell you, has sustained me as much as people in my walking world do, but people that you can call, and visit, and can visit you, and hang out with you, who will help you come through this to the other side.

So I have faith in you and those around you. Holding you ALL in the light (if that's ok with you). I just don't have that sinking feeling in my gut reading this because my first thought was straight to all you have around you. You made a step by going for help and accepting it with a doctor. Don't forget the medicine of friends and people who want to help (and the medicine of those hired to help, i.e. when I'm in a rough patch and can pull it off, having someone clean, or getting a massage or manicure or mowing the lawn or WHATEVER is cool too).
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-05-25 12:46 am (UTC)
I do have a lot of support, and that's awesome. I am happy to be held in the light. Thank you, dear.
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