recovery Day X; depression strikes
Step 1. Tell Someone;
Depression is no stranger to me. I know what it looks like, how it changes my attitude and behaviour. And I know that when it strikes to suffer in silence is a common response. Depression crushes my drive to socialize. It crushes my desire to care for my home, to care for myself. It sucks the joy out of the things I love the most. Its a bummer, like a flat tire during the worst snowstorm of your life. And you don’t have a spare.
Well… A flat in the middle of the worst snowstorm of your life and no spare tire. You call someone. I know its hard. I know its embarrassing. I know it can strip you of pride. Rob a person of their ability to feel independent. Left unchecked long enough it can start to tear your life down. It can affect your job performance. Maybe even lead to job loss. Bills pile up; And the hole gets deeper and deeper.
Last Monday I was diagnosed with moderate to severe depression by my Doctor @ Connections. He diagnosed me because I told him something was wrong. And I was given two choices; Take more medication OR Initiate the use of my most powerful and effective tools, one being Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).
For those of you not familiar with CBT, its basically a self or assisted launch of a learned tool. CBT helps a person evaluate situations negatively impacting their mental & physical health. Upon evaluation identify negative behaviours and implement a simple, attainable plan of action to help improve or correct the situation.
My Doctor & Connections are amazing. A worker was notified of my situation, it is not an emergency in my case because I have a strong history of self guided recovery. I set in motion a plan that day to right my course:
- Ride my bike! Healthy body, healthy mind. Exercise reduces stress.
- Eat Right. Drop the comfort foods, eat green & healthy proteins.
- Take out the trash, mentally & physically.
- Work Smart, be productive & creative. Feel Accomplished!
- Rinse and Repeat, but don’t overdo it. Start Small.
Soo far, since Monday I’ve executed steps 1 through 4 and I’m getting ready for the “Rinse/Repeat” part. I see improvements already. Its small, but ya gotta start somewhere.
Who knows, maybe my medication will increase? Is that bad? Meh, I don’t think so. But I can sure as hell tell anyone reading this;
I’mma fight. I’m gonna use my learned tools & fight!
Knowledge is power.
9:15 Pm and I’ve been standing in the shower for… I don’t know how long. Staring at my lathered hands, I rinse and repeat. Three days of missed/late meds and fucked up sleep schedule it took to start destabilizing my mental health. I woke up Saturday @ 5 Pm, can’t remember if I took my morning meds or my night meds. I have this fantasy where I followed all the prescribed rules, just backwards. Sunday, again I slept till 5 Pm. This time I woke up and the thoughts came back, hit me like a truck. An overwhelming flood of emotion, a panic attack of sorts. An overwhelming feeling of guilt. For what? And the death, its always nearby but lately not such a preoccupation. The pills shut it out when ya don’t fuck around with the schedule or miss em. I figured ya know, at least a week before I would notice the impact. And I’ve stayed up late before, never slept till 5 Pm the next day though. Maybe 1 Pm. My entire weekend routine is fucked. My eating schedule is fucked. I ate what, a muffin and a couple cookies today with some mint tea. I’ve been hiding out in my room the remainder of my day. My only conversation, passing hello’s and how are you’s with my roommates. I say it’s a cold, I don’t want to be different. I wonder how long it will take me to fix this? A week. Can I fix it? Ugh looks like my train of rushing thoughts and I will be visiting Connections tomorrow. On the bright side, I’ve not drank copiously or exposed myself to any other types of drugs. Street or otherwise. I don’t have much of an appetite. Been eating peanut butter sandwiches. But only after I wash my hands three or four times. I think to bed early and to rise early is the answer here. Go to Connections and stay busy, talk with someone. I hope there is time for CBT tomorrow. I live for CBT these days. I can’t wait to see Mike, Heather, Jamie and Krista. I can’t wait to see my friends. Maybe I will help with dinner or something, I can never remember what goes down on Tuesdays. Guess I’ll find out when I get there.
Made it into Connections, the week is pretty much at a close. I’ve endured what I thought to be unendurable. Today has been very positive. I went to recovery group this morning and poured out my story about how I feel like life is just all fucked up again and I’ll never get better. The facilitator really helped me to see that I am make’n progress, I am use’n my supports. I am being proactive and seeing my doctors. I’ve been sent (quickly) for abdominal x-rays and I have an EKG come’n up. I really need to learn to see the positive in my situation and feel a bit of compassion for myself instead of being so hard on myself about something I can’t change.
Mike was kind enough to walk with me to the park for some emergency CBT upon my immediate arrival. Which was nice cause the little things are getting away from me. It’s hard when you feel like your on the ragged edge to not let things get away from you.
Went to mindfulness today also. It was very grounding.
and yesterday I went through some rec planning with Heather. Found that there are a lot of activities I would love to get into. Tennis was one of them. And while checking my facebook this morning in the resource center I overheard Elaine helping another member put together an ad for someone to play tennis with. I piped up and said I am interested, turns out it’s just down the street from me.
I need to learn how to live life. Just like the rest of the world does and find meaning, purpose and fulfillment. I know its out there and I know I have it in me. Just gotta dig deep and find it.