Saturday, May 10, 2008

Broken Toys

The older I get the more I see us as broken toys. God's broken toys. I guess this post might seem more cynical tonight, because it's not a good night for me.

I never use to notice the imperfections as much. Maybe when we are younger we don't have as many, or I was just naive and couldn't see them. Or maybe with time we acquired more. But we all seem to have chinks in our armor, addictions, hooks, faults. A Buddhist nun Pema Chödrön calls it Shenpa.

We all have things to overcome. Mental problems like anxiety, depression, paranoia. Addictions to sex, drugs, alcohol, food, anger. Knee jerk reactions like pulling back from others because we have experienced passed hurts/disappointments, and are afraid of a replay. I've become an expert at that. The list of addictions, and acquired problems goes on, and on.

The statistics are bleak, (addictions at least). The majority don't overcome. I'm not happy with that. I spoke to someone about therapy. I am finally telling some people how bad my last episode of depression was. I called a mental health center. Usually it takes months to get into see someone. When I told her about my last episode of depression, she said that she would put a rush on it. I heard back within 48 hours. I guess I really do need therapy.

I usually am not angry. But lately I've been angry that I have depression, and it's not going away on it's own. I'm angry because I am beginning to realize that it has screwed up my life more then I thought. Invaded many aspects of my life. I'm also scared. I'm scared that I might not get better.

So what do we say about these chinks in our armor? We could say a lot. Tonight I see it as making us more human. Our similar imperfections draws us together. Maybe that's what a big chunk of being on this third rock from the sun is about. Relating to each other. Learning from one another, supporting, caring, sharing. Just relating. If we were perfect maybe we wouldn't interact so much. Maybe life is not so much about the outcome of being healed of additions, and solving problems, as it is about the interactions. Touching each others lifes. The journey. But don't get me wrong, I want this depression to disappear. I sure hope this isn't as good as it gets. Maybe I should call Tom Cruise, and ask him to wave his Scientology wand over me and cure me? Hm, I wounder if Dr. Deb might have his number? Life's a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.

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S'onnie said...

I am sorry to hear you are struggling with depression. I am glad though that you sought out help. too many don't and we all know the possible results of that!

I have a friend who constantly says this to everyone "be kind to yourself" and while this is difficult to do I recommend trying it. Being kind to you for no other reason then the fact that you can. Take some time to do something you enjoy and relaxes you. Buy yourself a small treat.

Take care

LadyBanana said...

I hope you will find the help that is right for you and that this awful time does not last too long. I understand the hopeless feeling that pervades and spoils everything and unless you can get the right help be it therapy or drugs it can be difficult to shift..

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi S'onnie and LadyBanana,

Yes, going to a therapist is a major step for me. It's not what I want to do. But I am unaware of another way to get help. Somehow it just doesn't feel like the right thing for me. But until I figure out what is right, I'd better get some help from a shrink.

I'm not taking care of myself. Not eating right, not exercising, not getting enough rest, etc. I don't care enough about myself to do those things right now. I guess they call that loss of interest. (?)

Deb said...

This isn't as good as it gets. It will get better.

Anonymous said...

I think it's good first step that you actually went looking for help. It's proactive and good luck!

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi Dr. Deb,

Could I get that in writing, and with your professional guarantee?

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi asthepumpturns,

Thanks, but it's one thing to call on the phone, another to show up in person.

Do you think they will give me a sedative to help me through my first therapy session? (wink)

Awake In Rochester said...

Dr. Deb,

Hey, you never did give me Tom Cruise's phone number. I heard rumor that you two are tight.

Anonymous said...

Yes you are right,it is one thing to call and another to go...but I know many people who never did anything. You go girl...

And I dunno about the sedative, but you can try.


Fat Doctor said...

Oh my cyberfriend, I'm so sorry that you are hurting. I'll keep you in my prayers. Been there, and it sucks.

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi asthepumpturns,

Thanks for the kind words. I was just joking about the sedative. I wouldn't want to fall asleep on the therapist. zzz

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi Fat Doctor,

I greatly appreciate the prayers! Thank you!

MYSTI said...

I hope you feel better soon and the depression lifts. Be sure to pamper yourself, and do a few things that make you happy. Even if they are little things such as a hot bubble bath, or reading a good book. When i am depressed, i like to go to our local beach and just sit with God. I take in all the beauty he has made, and just sit, breath and allow my senses to feel.


pat said...

I'm a strong advocate of short courses of anti-depressants when depression gets to a point where it affects quality of life.

HOWEVER, I also strongly believe that depression CANNOT be treated with meds alone and, while a person's depression may be a life-long affliction, counseling can help people live IN SPITE OF depression instead of trying to live AROUND it.

I was on a precipice a few years back and went on Prozac. My therapist helped me to understand how I react, why I react, and how I can react to how I react. It's important to seek out help rather than try to shoulder a burden that you cannot possibly carry.

I went off the Prozac after two years and live a better quality life these days. I may, from time to time, require a short course of anti-depressants to get me over the speed bumps but, once you've embraced the necessity of meds and their therapeutic value, it's half the battle.

Since you are a nursing assistant you should understand that pills don't "fix" things, nor do they "fix" things immediately. Often we require up to several weeks for our brains to wrap themselves around meds and embrace them.

Give yourself the greatest kindness you can and seek out remedies through your physician.

tom sheepandgoats said...

"Tonight I see it as making us more human. Our similar imperfections draws us together."

That's a pretty helpful attitude for one on the road to get better. Your imperfections are not the same as the next person, but we all have them. Each generation is a little more fragile than the one preceding it. (which (IMO) is in harmony with what the Bible tells us about humankind)

"I'm also scared. I'm scared that I might not get better." That, too, is an understandable fear. Occasionally it turns out that way. But remember, everyone who is depressed thinks they will not get better.

We all have our own unique experiences and genes. Ideally, therapy helps a person to find out things about themselves. When it's over, they sometimes reflect that the self-knowledge was worth the price of admission.

It's good if the conscience part of you isn't a stern judge. Try to make it a friendly coach instead.

tom sheepandgoats said...

Why don't you post about a day at the Lilac Festival? I've taken last Sunday, so you have to choose another day.

If you're up to it.

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi Mysti,

It's good to hear from you. I know that this is a difficult time for you. Your going though something too. So I was pleasantly surprised to see you visit.

Thanks for the positive tips on what to do. I should make a little list of those thing because when depression get bad, I can't seem to think of any of them.

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi Pat,

I'm sorry to hear that you also have had trouble with depression. I am aware that it is not rare.

I am not to keen on meds. I have heard more against them, (some by therapists), then for. It's good if they have helped you, and I would be interested in hearing how they have. But I don't intend to take any.

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi Tom sheepandgoats,

At first I was going to mention how all types of imperfections draw us together including physical ones that some are born with. And that would be true, but I pared it down to acquired ones because of the topic.

For some reason I have figured out a lot about the reason I have anxiety. Things have just occurred to me in recent years. Knowing these things has not changed me, so hopefully the therapist can direct me in what to do with the info so I can change.

I hope to go to the Lilac Festival sometime this weekend. I don't have a camera so I don't know if I will post about it.

MYSTI said...

You are very welcome Awake. I just hope that you feel better soon. Lists are great, i learned to count on them when i am in my fibro fogs. lol well when i remember to write on the list, or remember where i put the list! laughing. Hugs... I hope you had a little happiness in your day today. Know you are in my prayers and thoughts.

Anonymous said...

You know what? After reading some of your post ... you don't really sound depressed at all. I'm sorry to hear about it, hope you get better! :)

Sometimes you just need the support of friends or family, hope the therapy gets you back onto your feet.

Awake In Rochester said...

Hi -a,

Actually the depression isn't as bad as it was before. It is something that comes, and goes. I'm seeking help now mostly because my last episode of depression was bad. I don't want to go into details. Plus I have been in depression for years.

I try to keep things upbeat when I blog. I did post something kind of heavy, and dark awhile back and got some negative reactions. So I'm trying not to do that here. I don't want to scare people away.

tom sheepandgoats said...

Possibly you can think of persons who have had the same or similar experiences as you, and who blow it off or take it in stride, whereas you become anxious. Or, if not that, maybe you can think of persons who seem to do without a care what would worry you to death. Why that difference among people?

Some of it is the genes. But it may that some of it is thinking you regard things that happen to you. This is where the right type of therapy could prove helpful.

Identifying what makes you anxious, to a large extent, is a project you can do yourself. And you have done that. Good for you! But identifying thinking patterns often is beyond self-help. As well as how those thinking patterns came about, which knowledge is often necessary so as to modify them.

What is hard-wired you must learn to live with, even embrace. It's you. Sometimes people direct much anger at themselves because they haven't yet come to terms with who they want to be or feel this or that.....but there's something that keeps dragging you another way. This, too, is an area in which counseling can help.

Actually, that's a better word, isn't it? "Therapy" carries a certain stigma, doesn't it? But not counseling. That's what I meant by self-knowledge. The right counseling can help people find out who they are.

Anonymous said...

FInding what works for you is sometimes a long journey.. meds and such sometimes take their toll before they work.. may you find what you need to help you along the way. GOOD LUCK to you and take care.. PS thanks for the craigslist idea!! : )

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Awake In Rochester said...

Hi Mysti,

Laughter is important to me too. I think that is why I enjoy sit-coms, and comedy movies so much. I think I'll put that on the list.

Hi Tom,

I didn't realize that the word Therapy carried a stigma, and that counseling sounds better. Maybe I should consider saying the word counseling instead. However, for some reason I like the word therapy, maybe because it reminds me of physical therapy, occupational therapy, and so on. The word therapy to me sounds like a treatment to help get you better. And that's what I want.

Hi Caroldee, I'm not to keen on the meds, but want the therapy. I hope that Craigslist works for you. By the way, your message doubled so I deleted one.