So, yes, I am sticking with the name for this. I couldn’t come up with anything better. I am off to therapy soon. It is in a different building across the road, and I will miss the nice lady at the church who opens the doors for me. She always had a kind word to say and that made me feel better about the therapy that I was about to go into. I am kinda hoping the new room has a couch. I know I get carried away by the fantasy sometimes, but it is a classic image in my head.
I am feeling a lot better about going than I did last week. I was dreading last week. I thought it was going to be a horrible session and now I look back, I made it so much worse for myself by building up that it was going to be bad, when in reality, I had no way of knowing what the session would actually be like. So, as friendly advice, if you are dreading therapy, try not to let it snowball too much. I know it is hard, but that is what I am trying to do today.
I posted something about depression yesterday from Hyperbole and a Half.
A quick aside. I spent all of yesterday saying it was Hyper Bole (Like the next thing you get to play in after winning the Super Bowl). Gauri mentioned late in the evening that ‘Hun, I think it is Hy-per-bo-le.’ I am a dumbass sometimes.
The post is on my blog, and I suggest you read it. It is a fantastic look at depression. If you do, please head to her blog and say something. It is only fair for me to ask this, as she is the one who created the post and deserves credit. Anyways, one part of her post talks about…
‘I’ve always wanted to not give a fuck. While crying helplessly into my pillow for no good reason, I would often fantasize that maybe someday I could be one of those stoic badasses whose emotions are mostly comprised of rock music and not being afraid of things. And finally – finally – after a lifetime of feelings and anxiety and more feelings, I didn’t have any feelings left. I had spent my last feeling being disappointed that I couldn’t rent Jumanji. I felt invincible. .’ – Allie – Hyperbole and a Half.
This part struck a chord with me. Something happened recently. I won’t go into details, but it was not good. What was good about it was that I suddenly felt like all the anger/hurt/shame/guilt etc I usually felt after bad experiences was just not there. Have you ever told yourself ‘I don’t care about that or them’ and then spend the rest of the day trying to convince yourself that you do not care, but obviously do because it is so damn hard to not actually care? Or then blame yourself for everything that happened whether it was your fault or not?
The thing was, after the last bad thing. I didn’t feel any of those old emotions. It was like walking into a dark room where you think the surprise party is being held and you are expecting certain people to be there, but the room is empty and no-one answers when you shout out ‘Hello. Anyone there?’ Now I think about it, I think I felt a weird sense of ‘Where are those guys? Self-loathing should be kicking in about now. And where is guilt?. Man those guys are late. I best text them and see where they are.’ I think I was kinda pissed off that they didn’t show up. How weird is that? Then again, they had been part of me for so long. Maybe I saw them as a crappy restaurant that I only go to because it is on my route home that I miss when it gets closed down?
The upshot was that I found myself expecting to feel a certain way, and just not feeling it at all. I felt all the anger and hurt had been seared clean out of me by some sort of molten magma. It was the deepest cleanse treatment possible. I didn’t know quite how to feel for a few days after that. I kept expecting some negative emotion to jump out of the shadows and shout ‘Aha! I got you.’ It didn’t. It still hasn’t. Now, this is not to say that I am perfectly happy. Who the hell is? I still have my down days and I am starting to be ok with that. I was starting to feel that I was failing at not being depressed if I was not a perfect little ball of sunshine every single second of the day. Yes, I still have issues with setting myself unrealistic challenges. Luckily, Gauri gave me a good talking to and snapped me out of it. Tough love for sure, but completely what I needed.
My therapy has now become about recognising the good in me, which I am still finding hard to do. Added to this, I am trying to lay the foundations for a new, improved David (David 1.0) on solid stone rather than shifting sands. I guess all that time in the church made me remember some bible quotes from primary school. I am trying to develop a new way of coping with the world and the people in it. A more positive way of being and a stronger way for dealing with my issues. It helps that I really do not care about certain things anymore, rather than trying to convince myself that I don’t care.
So, to tie this up. I need to talk to my therapist about my blogging. This will make sense in a minute, so bare with me. I am writing a play about a man in space called ‘Alien Nation’, so I am studying astronauts. I was watching Chris Hadfield do a TED talk. Oh, one quick thing. He mentions this idea about perceived fear versus actual risk ie; the fear of spiders is greater than the actual risk you face from a spider. I really like this idea. So, I am going to start putting into practise. So, I was basically falling asleep while watching this. I could not keep my eyes open as I have not slept properly for two weeks or so and Gauri said that I should go to bed. I sleepily mumbled ‘No. Must research. Play to write.’
I was in full on stubborn child mode and was sat there with one eye open to conserve energy by not having them both open. It occurred to me that the last time I had felt like this was back when I was super stressed with my care job and doing shift work. But how can this be I asked myself? It is not as if I am busy. I am not earning much money, so what right do I have to call myself busy? I realized this while struggling to stay awake researching one of two plays I am writing, while I was also checking Twitter, LinkedIn and WordPress to keep making making contacts and develop existing contacts, after a day of writing, food testing, cleaning, cooking etc etc etc.
This is not to say that others do not have it worse than me. I say it because I realised that I was working myself into the ground because I felt that I can’t stop until I make it big and…
You know, it is, for me, five minutes later and I do not know how to finish that sentence. I am suddenly unsure of what I actually think or feel. I think I thought that it didn’t matter if I worked myself insane again as long as I was working hard to try and make it happen in the first place. Ah, I don’t know. Then again, that is why I need to talk about it in therapy. If I find and answer, I will post it later.
My apologies for the anti-climatic ending. Dammit, where was my awesome revelation so I could end this on a good note? Therapy ain’t like it is in the movies.
Take care buddies,