Crawling out of the hole

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I will finally admit it. As much as I try to blog about staying positive and having fun despite having RA, I am in the process of pulling myself out of a major self loathing anxiety ridden episode of depression.

Unfortunately, I think that many of us experience the co-existence of depression and chronic illness and while I want to always be positive and funny, I guess I figured that nobody would want to hear about being sad.

Shame on me. I blog, of course, to make connections with other people but also because it helps me process to see it written down somewhere.

I’ve also tried to be as realistic as possible so why in the world would I not write about this very real part of it?

Maybe because I needed to let it happen for awhile before I was willing to start processing it.

So what am I depressed about?

I really don’t know. I think it’s just a culmination of chronic illness, trying to do everything for everyone all the time, trying to be in 10 places at once, working and stressing about work far too much, and letting people take advantage of me.

It’s a lot.

I find myself in a position where I’m continually exhausted, where I get home from work and have absolutely no energy to do anything (including blogging), where I’m avoiding friends because I just don’t feel like going anywhere, and where my body is hurting because stress makes my symptoms so much worse.

Of course, the rational reactions I’ve had (screaming and throwing a double bird) to seriously important and life altering events (a homeless dude who jaywalked in front of my car on a quiet street carrying a case of beer) definitely make me a good time to hang out with.

Everybody loves the crazy angry girl!

Or at least everyone loves someone crazy!

Maybe it’s my bodys way of saying HEY YOU! YOU! Yeah, YOU with the blond (strawberry blond right now, thank you epic fail at touching up the roots yourself) hair! You’re not taking care of me! You’re trying to make me do an Ironman where I’m really only in proper form for a 10k! You’re not feeding me properly. You’re not giving me enough sleep. Sure, you bathe me but I could really use some exercise. And since you’re not giving me this, I’m going to make it so that all you feel like doing is getting into bed and crying.

Dude, body. I’d much prefer a good old fashioned bitch slap.

I had a moment with a good friend recently where everything kinda fell apart. And by fell apart, I mean that she asked me how my day was and I literally fell apart. I hadn’t realized until then how bad I was…and it was a good, much needed cry that ended with a long walk and a cup of tea.

So what am I doing right now? I am making damn well sure I get MY time. While I usually do a gratitude challenge for myself in November, now I’m taking time everyday to do 3 things for myself. Something I want to do, something for my health, and something to set me up for a good day tomorrow.

Today, it was a long hot bath and some yoga stretches. And I fully intend to dream about People’s new Sexiest Man Alive tonight so chalk that up to starting tomorrow happy!

Slowly but surely.

9 responses »

  1. What a great idea, to do these 3 items each day: “Something I want to do, something for my health, and something to set me up for a good day tomorrow.”

    As much as I too try to put a positive/happy spin to my life with RA, the truth to the matter is that periods of depression are inevitable. Entering these periods is often beyond my control. Sometimes, I don’t always immediately recognize that I’m even in such a state…but as soon as I do, it is (now) within my control to slowly start making those changes that will pull me out of the depression. I am happy about the fact that I can indeed now pull myself out, as I’ve previously written on my blog about a period where I got stuck in depression, and finally had to ask for help from others in order to get out of the whole.

    In my opinion, you’re doing everything right: you’re recognizing where you are at the moment, you’re establishing achievable goals for each day, and most importantly, you’re taking care of YOURSELF.

    Thanks for this open and honest post.

  2. (((hug))) I think most of us have been where you are now. I’m really sorry that you’re experiencing these feelings right now, but it’s good to share them.

    What a good idea – doing three things for yourself every day! I hope you enjoy every one of them, and start feeling much better soon.

  3. Oh hell yeah. You owe it to yourself to take “me time”, no matter how guilty and selfish it makes you feel. Anyone who doesn’t understand why you need it isn’t worth the time to worry about. This time of year tends to be one of the hardest. There’s all the regular “stuff” to deal with, plus all the extra holiday stresses and demands on your time. And all of that can make the RA go into overdrive.

    A good cry can be cathartic. Sometimes it’s the only way to reboot yourself. I’m sorry you had to fall so far and that things have been so hectic, but I love your three things approach and plan to give it a try myself. I’ve been kind of forced to reboot for the past week since I somehow managed to sprain my ankle. I thought it was just the RA kicking up a fuss at first, but it was not quite right. I don’t even know how I did it. So, I’ve been kind of forced to relax and push off a lot of the usual load. It’s kind of weird to think of spraining something as being a good thing, LOL.

    I hope things mellow and smooth out for you and the Body decided to cooperate and cut you some slack for a while.

  4. I think the best thing you did was making sure you told everybody how you were feeling but also what you were doing to make a little “me” time. Depression is ugly and it only grows with each minute. At least by talking about it here you can get a little inspiration to get up and get moving to start the ball rolling. Keep up doing things for yourself, in the end it’s all we’ve got :)

  5. These posts are old and not sure this will be seen but I want to thank you for expressing ur bouts w depression on here. It made me realize I’m not alone! I’m not living in self pity! I’m not making excuses! This pain is real! Thank You!

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