Zdzislaw Beksinski was a genius.

His images depict depression absolutely. Let’s form a narrative of how it feels to be a depressed person in a world that doesn’t understand:

“You can’t just stay in bed all day.”

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“Work is good for you! What do you mean, you can’t focus? I’m sure you’re fine.”

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“Are you exercising? Exercise is good for depression, you know.”

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“Well just go for a walk then!”

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“What about music? You used to love playing music.”

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“You think about yourself too much. There are a lot of people worse off, you know.”

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“Maybe that’s what you need, just get out more.”

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Lost it at work.

welp, I started crying at work this afternoon – I did go cheerily to the work lunch and maybe that used up my energy – and so am “out” (as being depressed) to two coworkers. That wouldn’t have been my choice,  but they were like “Oh my god, what did we say?!” I cried for an hour, I was all puffy-faced and red-eyed.

That scares me. In the past it has gone from crying outside work, to crying at work, to not being able to work because I can’t hold it together. I don’t think it is going to go well to cross my fingers and take a new medication for two weeks and try to hold it together…

Really, this is the beginning of a long, unstoppable slide downhill, and it’s the third time – the last two times I became unable to function at work, took short term disability, and got let go when I returned… and now I don’t even have any disability coverage. All I can do is keep going for as long as I can.

Where I’m supposed to scrape up hope, I can’t imagine; I’m certain my best days are behind me.

Midnight: Feeling like crap about going to work tomorrow. I’m scared it will be harder to keep up my hundred-pound mask of “Good morning! How are you?” when people know it’s a mask. In another sense it is a relief; the seal’s been broken. I guess I will see how it goes.

Corrupt

Lyrics to Depeche Mode:

“Corrupt”

I could corrupt you
In a heartbeat
You think you’re so special
Think you’re so sweet
What are you trying
Don’t even tempt me
Soon you’ll be crying
And wishing you’d dreamt me

You’ll be calling out my name
When you need someone to blame

I could corrupt you
It would be easy
Watching you suffer
Girl, it would please me
But I wouldn’t touch you
With my little finger
I know it would crush you
My memory would linger

You’d be crying out in pain
Begging me to play my games

I could corrupt you
It would be ugly
They could sedate you
But what good would drugs be

But I wouldn’t touch you
Put my hands on your hips
It would be too much to
Place my lips on your lips

You’d be calling out my name
Begging me to play my games

Maybe I’m ready now.

I told my psychiatrist yesterday, when he asked how strong the suicidal thoughts were, that I was going to try not to ruin Christmas for everyone if I could. I don’t know that holding out until after will be any better, though.

If I manage to keep up An Act while I see people, maybe they’ll wonder whether they “should have been able to tell.” (Of course not, is the answer, but I want to spare as much collateral damage as possible.)

today I slept until 10 am and left at 4 pm. I guess I’ll see how things go over the next few days. My thought yesterday was that I could stop taking my meds altogether to capture the perfect intersection of desire and energy as they wore off. In abstract, the idea of stopping meds that are working because I don’t have quite enough desire to complete suicide when I am on them sounds kinda crazy, I’ll admit…

Postscript: Jesus!! WordPress loaded up my blog from this time a few years ago at the bottom of the page – “Treatment [ECT] #1.” What a lovely reminder. I haven’t gotten any further ahead since then… no partner, no dates even, no steady job, no holidays, et cetera.  Now that is depressing!

Another new prescription.

well, I slept through work today, made it to my therapy appointment, my therapist called my psychiatrist while I was there to see if he could see me today, and now I have another prescription. He was all encouraging about how we would find something that worked and I was like “ya, that makes one of us [with hope.]”

It is 7 pm and now I’m in bed. Listening to stuff like Linkin Park’s Leave Out All the Rest, and wondering how to get out of this work lunch on Wednesday (that I was going to miss because of the scheduled psychiatrist appontment.)

My poster of Dave Gahan

I bought a 24×36 poster of Dave Gahan (the lead singer of Depeche Mode, who I worship) crouching down, hands on his knees, looking all serious, and hung it in my bedroom. I like to imagine that he is asking “how are you really doing?” and I feel a bit ashamed, that I’ve regressed to a 13 year old’s fantasy life, but also that this sums things up pretty well… the best I can do to approximate human caring on demand outside my psychiatrist’s office is to have this poster and an imagination to project onto it. Pathetic, really.

Sigfried and Roy’s last, sad performance.

So this short act was meant to be some kind of Triumphant Capstone but it seems tragically, morbidly  sad to me.  YouTube won’t lay off putting it in my “watch again” top videos even though it’s been weeks since I have watched it and I’ve got hundreds of newer videos in my history, so I thought maybe blogging about it would… erase it from the corner of my mind’s eye.

The way Roy is moving is much like how it feels to be low energy when the depression is bad…

Ketamine.

In November I started to feel Capital-D Depressed. Psychiatrist advised Getting Out More and Doing Fun Things. He spent 45 minutes with me and I left all motivated and  actually did a bang-ass job of arranging a ton of things to do and followed through with all of them, but didn’t enjoy them.

That was kind of a scary feeling, like the pit of your stomach dropping, or when your mouth gets hollow and watery before you throw up… in the summer I’d been able to think that things would get better as soon as my migraines settled down.  September and part of October were lovely; I got the house put back to rights and felt really good about it and knowing that I had the desire and the energy to keep  things up, and that it really was my migraines that had been the reason things got behind.

Then in November, after my appointment, I thought it was reasonable that I was bummed as I hadn’t done anything but work lately, and that I would feel better once I got out and was more active.  When I was out, and didn’t feel enjoyment, it was strangely alarming in a way; as if I was looking down at a bone I’d broken without feeling pain…like I know I’m supposed to be feeling something, and it’s just missing. I’m doing The Right Things, and nothing is happening!

I reported back to my psychiatrist and cried during the entire appointment. He wrote me three weeks, no refills, of a new prescription, for a new not-covered $100/month antidepressant (that I’ve now been on a week and a half.)

“Suicidal thoughts?” he asked. Yes, of course I’m having suicidal thoughts, if good things feel like nothing and regular things hurt and bad things feel awful I think it’s probably normal to… so I replied “Uh… 6 out of 10?” between sob-hiccups.

So then he talked about going into the hospital for two weeks of ketamine as a possible next step. “Have you heard of ketamine?” he asked me. “Ketamine?! Like, the street drug??” I said. “Yeah, they call it Special K,” he replied, and explained that apparently it works super fast, like within a couple of hours, and has had good results for bad depression. I had never heard of it having a legit use, but I guess it is popular as a recreational drug (helloooo blog readers who got here that way.) It is dissociative, which frightens me because I’ve had bad acid trips and don’t care to have one again, thank you… and wouldn’t a hospital be a perfect setup for a bad trip?! I also wonder if that is why I’ve read of shrooms for depression… maybe there’s something about psychoactive drugs that makes the brain really happy.

Anyway, I think this new antidepressant is helping a little, in that at least I’m not crying in public, and am getting to work for minimum hours – – there’s a lot going on in my head but I’m too tired (me, the original night owl) to write about it now.

 

Lukewarm.

I know I’m not as depressed as I have been, and in a strange way I wish I was.

I know that “cleansing tears” is a cliche phrase, and that when you are so depressed that you can cry and cry and not stop it seems odd to call it cleansing because you are never cleansed. Still, there was something comforting about feeling that deeply, about being so engrossed in sadness that the details of life just faded into the background. Now, instead, I feel like a blend of Julianne Moore and Ed Harris — “But I still have to face the hours, don’t I?”