… from the bungalow

I’ll Know My Name As It’s Called Again

34 Comments

I’m just not feelin’ it today. I had wanted to write last night about how amazing and magical my life is, and how I’m helping to create a successful blended family, but my stupid depression keeps creeping in lately. So I thought, I shouldn’t write today. I can’t get my head into it and it will just be boring and dumb anyway.

Do you ever do this? Classic depression. You have a desire to do something, but some jerkface in your head immediately tells you why it’s a bad idea. It won’t work. You’re no good. And it stops you in your tracks before you ever had a chance to find out.

Well, fuck you, depression.

See, something I’ve always struggled with is not being able to start something because I feel like I have to have it all perfectly planned out in my head. I need to do it right. Need to do it well. Who am I trying to impress, anyway?

In reality, all it usually takes for me is to get started on something. I start to see something come out of my efforts and it’s motivating. I don’t always finish things, but starting them is usually enough of an accomplishment by itself. Things almost always turn out to be easier or better than I would have imagined. I know this because I decided to see a counselor and take anti-depressants for a few years. During that time I was “me” enough to see the flaws in my thinking and I was able to develop some coping skills. I’ve since stopped taking anti-depressant medication, and I’ve been able to carry forward some of those skills. The trick is finding the way out of your head enough to remember to use them when you need them most. So rather than waiting until it’s dark to use these skills of mine, I will stand resolute in being pro-active.

I hereby declare war on depression.

“So make your siren’s call and sing all you want. I will not hear what you have to say. ‘Cause I need freedom now and I need to know how to live my life as it’s meant to be…

“I’ll know my name as it’s called again.”

Depression, consider yourself warned: You’re on my list.

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Author: Chris

A dad with a self-evaluation complex. Also a music therapist, college enrollment administrator, and hippie-nerd.

34 thoughts on “I’ll Know My Name As It’s Called Again

  1. Congratulations Sir! For taking responsibility for your happiness, but know that you have a helper and a comforter to walk beside you on this journey!
    Beautiful song!

  2. I love you, and I’ll help you as much as I can. I know it’s not easy, especially when we’re both depressed, but at least we have each other.

  3. You so nailed this one. I, too, needed the anti-depressants to re-find myself and have now weaned myself away from the nasty combination that went from discovery to redefinition to someone who would be no better to the world than the one who hid behind the false “OK’ perceived by colleagues and friends. It’s the dreary grey days that beckon the ghosts of all the years where hiding behind performing the little things needed to be done for everyone else kept me from disappearing totally. You are so right in noting that beginning is sufficient to push depression away from its powerhouse status and relegate it to second rate. Depression doesn’t bother with those who don’t care; it quantifies those who feel they need to be perfect for others. I’ll join your army of FYD’s (Fuck You Depression). bon travail.

    • “It’s the dreary grey days that beckon the ghosts of all the years where hiding behind performing the little things needed to be done for everyone else kept me from disappearing totally.”

      Wow. So eloquently stated, Ginnie. I always love what you have to say about things. Thanks for your support and your comment.

  4. I am having one of those days. I need a different enviroment between 8am and 5pm. Ever feel depressed and not know why? Maybe I am just being ungrateful and not thankful enough. I started going for counselling and it has really helped. Sorry just yapping and having a moment. Hope you feel better. Lets be like Nike and just do it and forget about the voices in the head.

    • Thanks, Claire. Gratitude goes a long way, but it’s hard to settle into that place in your heart when you’re feeling like you’re in the shadows.

  5. Serendipitously, right after I published this post, Jessica Kristie posted to her Facebook wall: “The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” ~ Elizabeth Kubler Ross’

    Indeed.

  6. The trick is finding the way out of your head enough to remember to use them when you need them most.

    My sisters and I have found the things that got us out of our heads, but my brother still struggles with that.

    For me, the way out of my head was volunteering. By seeing what other people were experiencing and being a part of mitigating those hardships in some small way, it was easier for me to see that everyone struggles . . . and that we principally get through it together.

    I haven’t volunteered since my son was born, but I’m looking for things to do maybe once a month. And I’m trying to get back into running, plantar fasciitis be damned, because running has always been a huge part of my kicking depression in the face.

    I like your affirmative, assertive stance against depression. Kick its butt, and know you’ve got virtual cheerleaders rootin’ for ya!

    • Awesome. Thanks, Deborah. I’m sure exercise would help my sedentary, depressed ass. But how do you find the motivation to exercise when you’re so accustomed to being sedentary? But writing helps, which is why I made a conscious effort to push past those feelings today and write anyway. Part of being proactive. I hope your brother is able to find a way that works for him.

  7. I had to do this a while ago. Now I’m on anxiety meds. When we went to the doc, I guess, until my husband had verbal diarreah about how horrible I’ve been and how much I’d changed, I never realized things were as bad as they were….

    • That’s hard to hear from your partner, I know. Kudos to you on taking the steps to make your life better. To me, the whole point of meds is to just use them long enough to gain perspective and learn coping mechanisms for when you decide to be yourself again. They really helped me with depression and anxiety, but I had this totally flat affect all the time. No downs, no ups. Just chill. Beats depression, but not a very exciting way to live.

  8. I’m working on a post that touches on the clutter in my heart. But perhaps it’s also the clutter in my head. Either way, I’m working on ways to ‘minimize’ the clutter that so often seems to take over.

    • Looking forward to reading that. It’s amazing how writing can help you clear your head. For me, it’s like there are only vague notions of thoughts and concepts pinging around in my head until I start to assign words to them. Once I’ve given my thoughts and feelings a voice, I’m much better equipped to understand them and move beyond.

  9. Starting is better than not starting. So just take that step, every time you’re called to action and pretty soon you’ll discover you’ve walked a mile. Just one step at a time.
    Keep going! You’re awesome.

    Kell

  10. HEY I just created a sharing page on my blog, and linked you as a favorite. 🙂 Thanks for sharing my blog. 🙂 I appreciate it.
    Kelly

  11. Interesting… Just yesterday I determined that the droopiness I’ve been feeling has been coming on for months and is a resurgence of the depression I successfully suppressed for a bunch of years. Now I can do something about it; of course I’m sad that it took me so long to catch on, but that’s one of the symptoms, isn’t it?

    I feel for you. Hope you feel better soon.

  12. Depression sucks and that’s why I take a magic pill every morning!

    • Carri, do you ever feel like it just evens you out? That was my main problem with meds: no downs and no ups. Even Steven. Although, middle ground looks good when you’re standing in a pit.

  13. I took meds for depression for a year, and I weaned myself off. I still feel “in the depths” sometimes, but I’m trying to handle life with exercise, vitamins, and blogging (just kidding, sort of). It’s hard some days, but mostly I’m plugging along.

    I found your blog through a link on another blog and look forward to reading more. I keep a blog as well at http://troismommy.wordpress.com if you ever want to stop by! 🙂

    Hang in there!

    • Thanks for reading & commenting! I really want to start exercising. I know it would help. And writing is therapeutic, so I know what you mean. I will definitely stop by!

  14. I wish my brother could you read your text, he definitely something like this as a push forward.

    My mother has always told me that if you don’t finish something you’ll always have the feeling that something is missing. And I do, because like you I never finish what I start.

    • Thanks for your comments. I do love the feeling of accomplishing something that I’ve started. I don’t know why I don’t do it more often. 🙂

  15. Ah, yes… depression. Yeah, I’m a bit (very) familiar with it. In fact, I was just starting to go into one of my downward spirals from ‘wow I really need a job’ to ‘wait, what the heck am I even alive for?’ when I read this and laughed a little bit. It’s hard to try to fight something like depression… something without a face, or a physical embodiment. Sometimes it helps when I imagine it as a sort of goo inside of me, and do some mental (‘metaphysical’) gymnastics to force it from my body. It really does help, honest. It’s just that ah… well, let’s face it, when you’re depressed, usually the things on your mind right then and there have nothing to do with making you feel BETTER, but everything to do with making you feel worse.

    Still. In the words of a wise man I’d attended the seminar of, ‘You’ve got to take ownership of yourself and everything about you. This includes your sadness, anger, fear, and hate.’ After all, if you surround yourself on the inside with bitterness, the world seems bleak, but if you can find those rays of happiness, they’ll shine out through you and light up the world as you see it.

    And now I have no idea what I’m writing. Sorry for the ramble. 😛

    • Not at all, Cassie. I hear you. You’re right on. There’s a thickness that weighs you down, like a wet blanket, only you don’t realize you’re under it. All you know is you feel sluggish and disinterested. It’s hard to move or even get out of bed. Simple things start to fade from your view, like eating healthy foods or sometimes even bathing.

      Visualization totally helps if you can teach yourself to recognize that you’re under the blanket in the first place. I’m going to visualize my wet blanket taking a Chuck Norris roundhouse to the face.

  16. One thing I’ve learned is to make myself forge ahead even when I’m mired in depression.

    I suffered a severe and extended depression that began when I was 18 and ended when I was 20 years old, and during that time I forced myself to go to class and complete my assignments even though I didn’t really care.

    The objective part of my brain knew that, once I’d recovered, I’d be happy for my prudence and that slacking off in the present would only hurt me in the future.

    • It’s good to be able to recognize that. Unfortunately, for so many people depression is not situational, but a lifelong disability. Best of luck to you!

  17. You’re awesome, Chris! Kickin’ ass and takin’ names!

  18. Pingback: Writing Challenge: Musical affinity | … from the bungalow

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