Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Uh Oh

I don't really want to post this, but I'm more afraid of not posting it.

I'm depressed.

Most people say that and they just mean they're having a bad day or maybe two.

But when a person with depression says it...

I should have realized it when I stopped blogging. Nothing to say, despite my first Mother's Day and Ella's first birthday. Really?

That's right. In the midst of all this joy, on the brink of what is essentially our dream life together, I started "cycling downward," as my doctor said.

I haven't cycled in more than 1 year and nine months--really in more than two years. Not since way before we found out I was pregnant with Ella. I made it through my entire pregnancy, and the year-allotted-for-post-partum-depression without ever feeling depressed. Sure there were some sad days--days when I got bad news, days when I learned people were sick or dying or dead, but there wasn't this feeling.

What is the feeling, you ask?

Sometimes it's like walking wearing clothes that have been drenched by a down pour. That heavy, awkward, difficult to move feeling. Sometimes I just want to lie in my bed. Sometimes it's more like I'm running as fast as I can, being chased, in a race... Wondering where the finish line is, when it will be over. Sometimes it's my legs feeling restless, as though I need to pace or walk and walk and walk without ever stopping. Trouble is, that comes at night when I'm supposed to be falling asleep. In the morning, when I used to walk with Ella, we're sleeping, eating breakfast, staying in our pajamas til noon.

Don't say it.

I know I have nothing to be depressed about. Our money problems will be solved when Justin starts working in July. The stress he is under finishing his residency will end with the end of June. I live in a beautiful house. I have a beautiful, healthy child. I live in the town we wanted to live in... I could go on.

That's what makes depression a disease. It sneaks in when you're least expecting it, starts as a little kernel and then metastasizes into parts of your life you thought were untouchable by depression.

I can't be depressed and have this beautiful child at the same time, can I?


So, Monday, it was back to San Diego to see my therapist and my psychiatrist. These women are geniuses, the ones who got me onto the right combination of meds and cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness and kept me stable for so long and saw me through the darkest time.

A little addition to the daily medicinal regime and the wrinkle should be smoothed out soon.

In the meantime, I am thankful for the friend who coincidentally called to chat. She pulled me out of my isolation (I was not even reading blogs, or calling friends or doing anything unnecessary). I'm grateful for my husband who doesn't tell me I have nothing to be depressed about, but hugs me and knows that sometimes I'll have a bad patch but that we'll get through it. I'm grateful for what I have. I'm grateful for the sunny day.

And look at this girl. How can I not smile? She KISSED me this morning. Justin got her out of her crib and changed her diaper when she woke up. I came in with a bottle and waited for them to be ready. He was holding her, when she leaned forward with her rosebud mouth, her tongue sticking out a little and landed on my cheek. It was gross and sloppy and amazing. Justin and I were so thrilled that we celebrated with cheers and congratulations and laughter--and she almost cried because of the commotion.

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