Posts Tagged ‘depression’

Five for Friday.

February 12, 2021

It’s Friday! Wait; Is it Friday? I think it’s Friday. Somebody check for me! Friday! Yes. We’re pretty sure. One of a gazillion reasons I need a grown-up job with grown-up responsibilities: a grown-up Monday-to-Friday schedule.

And you know what Friday means? Five for Friday posts! I am ridiculously excited about my “Five for Fridays” posts. Just five random thoughts that may or may not have been big enough for their own space. So here we go!

  1. One of the toughest things about being “home” again – “home” being in the house where I grew up, and where my brother and father live – and my baby sister temporarily moved home at the end of August because of a COVID eviction, so her too – is not so much that I’m in a house filled with people; it’s that we’re all on different schedules. Like I said, the number of people doesn’t faze me, because I’ve always lived in a small house with a big family, with scores of people always underfoot. It actually makes me feel more comfortable. Homier. But my dad goes to bed at 7 or 8 p.m. He has insomnia like me, god bless. So he tries to follow a strict sleep schedule. So I’m very conscious of this, especially because I have the insomnia issue he was kind enough to pass along to me. Le sigh. My brother, whom I affectionately call the Grown-Up In Residence, also carries the Insomnia Gene, but he just rolls with it. He’s been laid off for more than a year, but has been the one taking care of my father, and also my mother when she was still living at home. He’s been sleeping on the couch so he can hear if my father falls during teh night. That’s why it’s “easy” that I take over his room upstairs. Joe stays up til midnight. 1a. 2a. Somewhere in there. So I know any accidental bumps coming from my room isn’t going to bother him, but I do know that despite fitting into most of the stereotypical “guy” attributes, he is very sensitive to sounds that might disturb my father. Because then he has to listen to it all the next day. Heh. So our house “shuts down” every night, ridiculously early,, at 8p. It sounds simple, doesn’t it? Unpleasant, but straight-forward. No phone calls after 8p if I can help it, because the house was built in the late 1800s, so the insulation is laughable. You can hear a conversation on different levels and across the house better than you can in if the person was in the same room! And then the bathroom situation is…
  2. Okay, the bathroom. How many of you have lived in a house with multiple people – grown-up, actual people, not childrens – and only one bathroom. I know it’s not that uncommon the city, in older housing.Mostly I feel bad because I’m not the only one with sleeping problems. And when you hear more than one person tramping up and down the stairs at night – over and next to your bedroom, that can’t help. But! It does help your mindfulness, and when you’re lying very, very still in the morning
    listening for your sister to come out of the bathroom, it’s a good time for morning reflections and prayers.
  3. I don’t want to spend a lot of money on my* room here at my dad’s house, but a happier heart is going to keep me from falling into a deep depression. And to be honest, given the situation with my daughters, who are never out of my mind, I’m teetering, and have been So I want to do what I can’t to keep me right side up. Cheering up the room might fall into that category.

    Here’s how it looks now…

    I’m thinking maybe something mandala-y? Definitely something cheerful and happy. Warm tones. But I don’t want spend too much. My girls bought some tapestries at the old house. Gracie asked for some for Christmas, and helped pick some out for Santa. Bee was – IS – the queen of finding the cheapest sales online and avoiding scams. So I crossed my fingers and asked them for help. Sometimes I don’t get a response because: teenagers. Sometimes they don’t answer because…well. That’s a different story, and a sad one, and I don’t know how to fix it. But! I did get a quick answer about the tapestries and I’m trying to decide. So hit me up with suggestions!
  4. My head is a mess. Yes, that’s the most succinct description of me anyone has said in the history of psychoanalysis. In this week’s episode of WTF, Katie?!, we’re looking at why in the world I can’t seem to get it through my head that I don’t need to do timezone math anymore. I know – laugh all you want. It’s the silliest of little things wrong with me. I’ve been tethered to my best friend Corrie since we met. You know, 15 years ago. She’s been a huge part of keeping me sane through the move. And before the move. And every day even when nothing was going on. You get the picture. And sadly, I haven’t been able to deploy my Kidnap Corrie To Keep Her Happy, With me, And All of Sane because of the craptastic weather we’re experiencing not only in the north (expected), but in the deep south of Texas. We’re they’re getting six inches of snow. Because I’m gone!I Sheesh.What a slap in the face! “Dear Weather Gods, can I please have some snow? No? Oh, but now that I’m officially moved out, now Texas is getting snow? Oh. Okay. Just checking.” !!?!>#$#()_!!! For the love of Pete! But! Getting back to the tiniest of little points that I had, an entire paragraph ago, when I talktext Corrie, it’s still an hour behind. Cool, cool. But then when I go to talk to any of my aunts, the nursing home, my friend Juls, or really anyone else, I don’t need to do any math! NO MATH! I hate math! Why would I try to layer in any unnecessary math?! Insanity, I tell you. SOMEone please get that through my head.
  5. COVID. COVID COVID COVID. Please. You really need to stop now. Because now that I’m all up here in my cozy, cozy homeland, having completed this rather insane and intense cross-country drive all by myself, with a carload of shtuff… And now that I’ve unpacked that carload of shtuff and gotten myself as settled as can be for now… the distractions are wearing off and I really, really need to visit with my family, now that I’ve driven 1500+ miles to be with them. The people of Massachusetts are taking this “hunker down” direction seriously. As we should! But I would like to see my aunts and uncles, now that they’re across the city. And I’d love to be able to hang out with my cousins. Maybe a rowdy card game with everyone all at once? Tough to pull off, but I don’t mind being the details girl and organize it, if COVID WOULD JUST GO AWAY! Ahem.

And that is pretty much where my headspace is on this fine COVIDy Friday night. LOL And what are YOU all up to? Whatever it is, I hope it’s something that leaves you in better shape to be ready for bed when the time comes. No more 4a visits from Father Sleep. Or panicked 12:30p wake-ups the next day. But it’s fine. It’s FINE! Because it’s Friday. And after Friday, comes Saturday. God bless.

And good night!

*my brother’s

Moms never stop momming.

November 24, 2018

My mom is in a nursing home. Her Parkinson’s has progressed to the point that she’s been moved (though she’d say banished) to a facility that’s quite nice. The point is that when I call Mum and Dad’s house, Mum isn’t there. Getting her on the phone at her new facility is impossible. And if you were, hypothetically, able to get her on the phone, she’s not verbal. More precisely, she’s verbal in her own time, which has slowed even more than it was. The bottom line: if you’re not there in person, you can’t talk to Mum. The last time I talked to her was months ago, on my birthday.

Today, the girls are at their dad’s. I dropped them off yesterday. Since then, I haven’t so much as changed my pajamas. I’ve lounged as much as a loungey-person can lounge. It’s been good for my worn-out soul.

Which is why my mom called. Not only called, FaceTimed. It’s like she heard the unacceptable levels of laziness and called to give me a good kick in the rear! I had to laugh.

(Actually, my Auntie Pam had called and even though I saw an unsaved number [her cell] in my missed calls when I was moving Christmas decorations, I knew it had to be someone from home if it was a 508- number. So I called back. She had FaceTimed with my cousin while she was visiting with Mum and thought they could try it with me. Huzzah! Rousing success. A Mum-level of rousing success at least. Crazy thoughtful!)

And so that’s how my Mum, from across the Parkinson’s levels of suckitude and increasing in communication, my mom was able to call and give me the what-for. And a Happy Thanksgiving, an I miss you, and an I love you.

I’m not crying that’s just a bit of dust that’s gotten into my eye as I clean my house like crazy. You never know when Mum might call again.

Fall is back (and so, perhaps, am I).

October 22, 2018

Today is Monday. I usually dread Mondays. They’re crazy, stressful, frantic, and exhausting.

But today when I stepped outside, it was cold. Well, not cold. Brisk. Fallish.

It. Was. Glorious.

I have a lot going on. A kidney stone. Plenty of bills – and not the green kind I want to see spilling out of my purse. A roof leak. A concerning lack of brakes in the car. And a constant struggle with depression and anxiety.

But that brisk air…usually it makes me homesick, that first taste of Fall each year. And, yes, there was a tiny taste of that in the back of my throat. The thing is: I’m a little bit homesick all the time. That taste didn’t grow because of the change in seasons this year.

Right now, I feel like I can come up out of it. I feel like I can change things. I feel like I have things I want to say. Words that want to crawl all up over the pages. That feeling, it’s happened before. I type a lot of “It’s gonna be better” posts. <shrugs> I can’t say if this one is for real. If it will be followed tomorrow with another.

But I don’t want to not write it because of the uncertainty.

I want to open the window, and drink in the Fall air, and let myself hope. I have things to say. And today that thing is: It is Fall-ish outside and I am rejuvenated by it.

I hope it is still Fall-ish tomorrow.

Ice cream > Magic kisses.

July 5, 2018

Behold! For it is just the magic I needed to wake me up from the deepest slumber.

You can keep your unsolicited (and kinda creepy) kisses from your Disney Princes. I will keep the black raspberry ice cream.

BlackRaspberry_20180630

Let’s hope the complete surprise (when I needed it most, too!) sustains me through this bout of depression. I’m just gonna keep writing (and ice creaming) until I don’t have to force myself. Faking it until I’m making it.

…But, um, not with the ice cream. No forced marches there!

Five for Friday.

December 8, 2017

Morning, everyone! Let’s launch right into it, shall we?

1. The elephant in the room: I know I haven’t been posting lately. I’ve struggled with depression on and off throughout my life and because of some serious (but not permanent, please Universe) financial difficulties, it’s been hanging around again. When I get deep into the weeds like this, I really can’t write. Especially when I’m asked to create engaging, witty, and entertaining content before coffee. Right? Gawd! No wonder I’ve been without words for so long! But there it is. I promise I’m fighting the good fight and I’ll be back again. I haven’t hung up my sign for good.

2. It snowed last night in Austin and San Antonio. Those who I’m friends with on Facebook know I’ve been excitedly posting about the snowflakes/sleet/wintry mix promises our fickle weathermen have been promising all week. And then taking back because they’re GIANT LIARS!!! Instead, our snow went south and how unfair is that?! I’ve been asking my friend who travels back and forth to a weekend place atop a mountain in Colorado to make a snowman for me, even if it’s a tiny 4″ snowman because they’ve only gotten a dusting. My friend refuses. I. WANT. SNOW. !!!

3. Gracie-girl decided to reclaim her closet and I have a hallway full o’ stuff for me to re-home this weekend. Can you hear my underenthusement? (Is that a word?) It’s not an unreasonable request. The girls shared a room growing up. When Jeff and the Xman moved in, it made more sense for the Xman to share a room with Bee, on the two nights every fourteen days when they’d both be home, and let the girls have their own spaces the rest of the time. Otherwise it would be the girls sharing space all the time, and an empty room for 12 days out of every 14. The Xman was far, far too badly behaved to make that a craft room/Xman’s room to reclaim some functionality. And so we moved Gracie into my craft room. I hastily moved some things so Gracie could hang up her clothes. But I left all the photo albums, scrapbooks, folding chairs, wire shelving unit, and piles and piles of stuff we needed to store and had no other room for. Last weekend Gracie decided she wanted to make it a small office, so she cleared everything out (except the folding chairs – they had to stay) and piled it all in the hallway. I suppose I should, you know, move it. I guess.

4. Bee has been running an underground Slime Business at her school. For the past four months. Yes, this will be a separate blog post. No, I didn’t find out because she went to jail. TL;DR – I need suggestions for an Etsy store name for her to transition into life on the up-and-up.

5. I had a rather successful book haul at the library yesterday! Nine novels, one autobiography. I chose one that someone recently RAVED about on Twitter, but hell if I can remember who it was (and they aren’t ‘fessing up…). The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I grabbed it, thinking it would either go up in flames (and then I could greedily move on to the next book-victim in my pool of contenders….) or I’d fall in gloriously and have all evening to hoover it up. I didn’t have all evening, but I did start thinking it might be one of my Best of 2017; it’s too early for me to say for sure, I’m only about a quarter-way in, but I did volunteer to take shifts covering the receptionist’s breaks today because they let you read up there. I can’t wait to tell you how the rest of my curiosity voyage goes!

And there you have it. A genuine blog post. I hope to have some more for you very soon!

Don’t worry: I’m still swimming.

March 25, 2017

I’ve been having quite a time of it lately. I don’t know how it works for you, but when I’m wrestling with something – an idea, a problem, demons, ghosts, tweenagers, break-ups, and the worst of them all, feelings – well, I shut down. I go into power-save mode so I can ensure that I have energy for the most important things. I feed the kids. Supervise homework. Buy groceries. Go to Beauty in the Beast. Force myself to go to work. The girls know I’ve been…not my best. They think I’m sick. [And, honestly, on top of everything else, I have been sick. I made them draw blood to see if I had listeria because of the constant stomach issues and the fact that I’d eaten some of the recalled Sargento cheese. Why you play me like that, cheese?]

Depression isn’t an easy thing. Yes, that’s the most obvious statement I could possibly have made, but here’s the thing: saying it out loud helps. Writing it helps me even more, given my affinity for writerly occupations. Writing is my oxygen. Writing and reading, they’re one of my best measurements to gauge my mental health and overall well-being. This past week (and maybe longer? I don’t know, honestly, how wide this pond has stretched) I haven’t been able to post because I haven’t been able to write. I couldn’t think of anything worthwhile. When I did think of something, I couldn’t imagine that it would hold any value for any one reading it. Why post useless material? But I persisted. I sat every morning and tried to think of anything of value; things that would necessitate more than three sentences to sum things up. Because I wouldn’t let myself just throw my hands in the air (metaphorically; my depression sucks all energy out of me and I couldn’t even throw my hands in the air in exasperation in my head). I made myself type things out, start stories I didn’t like, just to go through the motions. To fucking do something. I have a couple dozen drafts from last week. I might have written something, but I couldn’t post it. I wasn’t close to swimming to shore, but at least I was treading water. When you’re in the muck as bad as I was, “just” treading water is amazing. It’s a gold star. Getting your mind to loosen the grip on the thoughts of uselessness, panic, anxiety, and general despair…it’s exhausting, but also rewarding because a tiny voice is in there telling you that you made a bit of progress. There’s hope. I was still swimming. Or, trying to anyway.

Gracie kept asking for blog posts. A few book club partners asked if they had missed my Thursday reviews. I imagine Kathy is probably one step from boarding a plane and showing up on my doorstep. But other than that, it’s been quiet. Either everyone is giving me space. Or they have been busy and don’t notice. Maybe I’m barely a ripple in their pond.

But that’s okay. Them, waiting it out. It’s what I needed. I don’t know why I was moved to finally write a post tonight. I don’t know why I wanted to explain all of a sudden. I’m not embarrassed by my conditions. Depression and anxiety are heavily stigmatized in our society, and that’s not right. You can’t seek help if you’re afraid to say what’s wrong. If you’re afraid to admit even to yourself what’s wrong. There’s nothing wrong with being depressed. It’s not your fault if you are. Tell yourself what’s wrong. Tell someone else what’s wrong (if you can). And seek self-care and let others care for you, too.

I’m doing better. I kept swimming (just keep swimming – Dory gives the best advice). I know that I have a wonderful village standing by, ready to throw in a life preserver if I need it. I know that things will get better. It won’t always be like this; it won’t always feel like this. I’m okay, guys. I’m writing. And in just a few seconds, I’ll hit the publish button. I’m back. Ish, but hey! I’m here!