Wednesday, March 09, 2011

enough is enough

I admit it. I am depressed. Clinically, situationally, whatever anyone wants to diagnose me as. Depressed.

It sucks. Brutally, royally sucks....And for some reason, I am embarrassed. I don't know if I am humiliated by the weakness that this affliction shows or by the possibility that I am "unfixable" or broken.

After the birth of Briar, I was prescribed antidepressants and attended meetings with a therapist who dealt with post-partum depression. I had been feeling "normal" for quite sometime and had been working with the doctor as I was weaned off the meds.....Then Jeff "bought the farm" (SO sick of using "died", "passed", "left us", etc. I don't think he'd mind if I used more colourful euphemisms...especially if they make me giggle...). His abrupt departure meant the end to my declining medication. I have stayed at the dose I was then. A bloody high dose.

I have been at a point a few times since he "went belly up" where I thought I could resume the lowering of my meds. But since we've moved, that phenomenon has halted all together.

I don't know what has changed aside from working outside the home, Liv attending school, not having my sister or Marnie close by, and the much higher living expenses....Okay, I suppose a lot of shit has changed.

There are truly wonderful things about being here....the beach, the community, the cooler weather....

But I want my garden and my crafts. I want to hang with my kiddos. I want time to sit in the chicken yard and gaze at the "Girlz". I want to again focus on my photography and sewing dresses.

But that time has passed and I have to move on.

I keep focusing on the negative when I should just suck that shit up and move on. I DO NOT want to feel this way. Sad, pathetic, useless, needy.

So I am forcing myself to pull up these bloody itchy socks and face this "Depression Dude" with a sneer on my lips while flipping the bird in his ugly mug.

I have an appointment with my beloved therapist who has agreed to take me on again. I will not allow myself to wallow in the negative (for every bloody issue on my list, I am going to force myself to write something.....happy) and I am making myself go back to my one-good-thing exercise. I don't have the time to do this....But I need to make the time, because I think I am going insane.

I am realizing that it's a damn good thing that I keep this blog. It has chronicled this insidious spiral downward while I was unaware of its' happening. But last night, I sat here and read my posts from the last few months.....and, dude, it was a depressing read.

So wish me luck, I am going to push off from the bottom and attempt to head back up to the surface.

Thank you for all your support, my blogosphere buddies. You rock.


Krista said...

Totally, totally rooting for you, Jackie. We're all in this together. Sending love and hugs to you xoxo

Annie said...

Much love from way up here. xoxo

Lynn said...

Good thoughts are always with you and your family.

Suddenwidow said...

Loving you and cheering you on from here. And may I say that you still make me laugh! You rock and I hope that you are feeling better soon.

Ashley Tinius said...

I struggle with depression as well. Good luck to you:)

leigh in the sav said...

lots of love, jackie. you are doing so many things well and right, please remember to give yourself credit for all that you have done and managed since jeff's death. it's impressive; you may not feel like it, but it is. your strength is evident to so many; i'm happy to hear you're moving forward with a plan.

you're always in my thoughts. xoxo

AKA "Meesh" said...

Holding you up...XOXO

Anonymous said...

i just went through my first anniversary of my dudes has been really good to read your blog, things just click for me,the stuff you say , has helped me i cant be any help to you but depression from reading lots of stuff can be part of the grieving ,so NORMAL...keep being you and all the stuff you do,you are amazing...sending hugs from australia to you norma

Cadi said...

When Brent died, I was pregnant, so no druggies for me. I do wonder at times if they would take the edge of the pain off or if I'd just be more depressed knowing that I was taking anti-depressants... Sigh.

Much love, my dear!

Michele Neff Hernandez said...

Sending love, crossing my fingers, rooting for you (though this word has a whole other connotation in Australia!!), believing in your grit and determination, and just knowing that you are deeply loved. Go Jackie, push off with all your might and know that there are all kinds of merpeople swimming nearby reading to flip a fin when needed. And for the record, I love the euphamisms. Belly up indeed.

Jill said...

Cheering you from afar. One thing I've learned from following your blog for 2.5 years is that you can kick butt - so I am sure you will. I hope the journey there is as gentle as possible.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jackie,

I hope this passes soon. Sounds like when you moved, you lost your biggest support network -- female friends and sister. I'm thinking of you.

Joan said...

I have had episodes of depression a number of times in my life and I have never had to deal with what you are coping with. Be kind to yourself as you cope with some truly difficult life circumstances. Glad to know you are going to have some outside support.

Boo said...

I love you and am proud of you for saying it how it is ... because of the way you view it, that was very hard for you, I'd imagine.

I wish there wasn't this stigma attached to depression ... because there shouldn't be. Actually I define depression as "sad without a reason to be" ... well honey, you had postpartum (is that how you spelled it) and then your husband "bought the farm" ???? I've never heard of that expression before, and I've read your whole blog ... and I thought WTF is she talking about - she never mentioned a farm before - LOL Well I think you have every reason to be down and struggling and finding it hard to motivate yourself and battle each day. It would be strange if you didn't.

Anonymous said...

I'm sending you lots of good thoughts. And I hope that the therapy, and maybe also the coming spring, help.

Anonymous said...

You need the Lord.....he will give you Joy and Comfort. Trust in HIS finished work on the cross. Jesus too experienced death. He died for our sins so that we can have eternal life. Get yourself a King James Bible and start reading in John. Really!

~~~Praying for You

Marissa said...

"I keep focusing on the negative when I should just suck that shit up and move on. I DO NOT want to feel this way. Sad, pathetic, useless, needy."

You are FEELING sad, YOU are not a sad human being. Pathetic? No way. No how. Not happening. You are NOT pathetic. You ARE amazing, not useless. Look at all you've had to do these past few years. Liked doing it or not, you did it. Hardly useless. You've brought me JOY just by being my friend. What's wrong with being needy?! I'm needy. Most of us are actually, if we're willing to admit it.

I'm still in your corner, remaining there steadfastly, wishing you peace and praying you find it very, very soon. Sending lots of love...

Keep flipping the bird to the funk.

KRA said...

Jackie, good for you to step back and decide you need to go get some help. I've suffered from depression for a long time but have only recently been diagnosed and medicated, and I recognize a lot of the feelings in your words. You have gone through a lot of changes since Jeff's passing, all of them stressful. You deserve to feel joy again, and I hope this is the first step in your progress towards that. Much love to you and the children.

Crash Course Widow said...

Sometimes realizing it and accepting it are the hardest parts; I know that's been the case for me each time (2? 3?) I realized I was really, seriously depressed in the past 3-4 years. Everything you wrote here, I felt too…the embarrassment, shame, feeling like failure, broken, etc.

I've never actually been diagnosed as being clinically depressed, and the past 2 times I've realized how low I was, I was able to eventually pull myself out of it. So is it really clinical depression for me, if I don't need meds to regulate it? Beats me…but I still get depressed. And like you, it takes my blog (and realizing my patterns, thoughts, and downward spiral over the previous 3-6 months) to finally "see" those blaring neon signs too.

It's so hard to differentiate between what's grief and what's depression, and it's especially maddening when a lot of therapists (and that stupid DSM "bible" too) can't, won't, or don't have any way to discern which is which. Maybe it doesn't really matter much.

And while I'll say that most of my grieving is done (or at least there's nothing terribly new anymore and it's all pretty seldom and sporadic), feeling awful about different things is still awfully common for me. But the good to average days/weeks/months/times still far outweigh what I used to have in the first 3-4 years of widowhood.

As a widow who moved post-farm-buying too, I completely understand how and why you'd be struggling too. I moved away from my life with Charley at ~17 months out and became totally miserable by a year or so later; moving back into where I'd lived before at almost 4 years out helped immensely. Please don't underestimate how much of a toll that moving can take when you're already so depleted, especially when the move was supposed to be such a good thing and a positive direction "on paper."

Be gentle with yourself, Jackie. You're normal. And much loved.


Kirsten said...

Hang in there, you. We love you.

Abby Carter said...

Ah... like the others, I feel your pain Jackie. I too have struggled with this one. I got onto meds, and Vitamin D and extra Bs and did a ton of exercise. Nothing really seemed to help. It was a slow climb back up a muddy slope.

Moving too has its downfalls. At first, its so exciting, and all these new people come into our lives introducing themselves and inviting us over for get-to-know-you chats, but then all that wanes and we miss the support we left behind and wonder if we really just moved for the "high." This moving "post partum" will also pass as we settle and discover who our real support people are.

I read upbeat books (I recommend Power of Joy) and tried to do things that made me happy. I forced smiles onto my face even though it felt like it would crack. I bought myself flowers and ate tons of dark chocolate.

I think its a big mind game of having faith that you won't be in this state forever and imaging those who have "bought the farm" behind us kicking our asses to get the garden tilled for god's sake.

Sometimes we get so myopic, looking at the one tiny little garden that we tend, that we forget there is a whole farm out there.


Hugs, to you. Abby

Abby Carter said...

Oops. The book I recommend is called "Awakening Joy"

Anonymous said...

Hi Jackie I have never commented before, but I actually came across your blog over a year ago from another blog that I enjoy reading. Anyways I just wanted to say that I think your awesome, you probably don't think so, but the list you wrote of all the shit that changed. Moving, working, kids in school etc shows right there that you still keep moving and do what you need to in life to make a worth while life for your two beautiful children and yourself. I have suffered through depression in my life also so I do know the hopeless feelings, but I always look back to the last time and I remember feeling like I was never going to get past this and now I'm here today past it and moving through more of lifes lessons. So I just wanted to say I don't know you, but I think you seem to have more strong will and determination then you give yourself credit for and I have seen through reading your blog you have already done amazing things for your babies. Thanks for sharing your story, I think it is not only therapeutic for you, but those of us that read your story as well. Good Luck and I hope the best for you and your children always! Amber

michelle said...

I have read your blog for a long while and always wanted to write but never really had the words. I'm still not certain what to say that could relieve any of your pain or to make you smile for even a moment. So, as inadequate as this may be.. hang in what you need to do for yourself. You're an awesome mom and we all see through your blog how hard you are trying. I am sending you good thoughts and wishing you all the best.

Take care

Poppy and Mei said...

Back to the Doctor? Best move ever...XXxx.

Megan B said...

My father just died, my best firend in the world. I was on enough antidepressants before he died to help a horse. I will stay on them, probably the rest of my life. And I am not ashamed. You need not be either. My brain doesn't work just like someone else's heart doesn't work, or their foot, or their pancreas. No different. And loss changes our brain chemistry. So go ahead, do what you need to do, and feel good about it because it means you are taking caer of yourself. You can do it, I can do it.
We'll be ok.
Megan in Minneapolis

Victoria said...

I wish you all the luck in the world and this chicky over here is saying YEAY! Whatever it takes Jackie, I had PND too, although not enough to be medicated. I do remember the feeling though and that (or worse), it's too much to deal with without help, whether it's medication, talking or both. Good luck x

darcie said...

So yeah, I'm pretty behind...
I'm glad you are getting help...It's so hard to do it all and be it all - especially when you are on your own...I hope you feel better soon peached.

Anonymous said...

I have been reading your blog for a few years now - I linked into it from a crafty friend who had your site on her blog roll. I have been following your journey, although I have never commented. I think that you are amazing. You are a loving, caring, devoted, and attached mother who is incredibly in tune with her children's needs. You are creative in your work and in your writing. From what you write, it would seem that you do so much for others. Now it is time to help yourself. You have been through hell - sheer hell. You are allowed to feel whatever it is you want to feel, for however long you need. But. If you feel that your emotions are interfering with the things you do so well (i.e., mothering, working, crafting, being a daughter and sister, and grieving your husband), then it's time. Time to ask for help for you. For Jackie. To get back to the person that you know you are and want to be.

Much love and cyber support,
Heidi, a fellow Canadian

Anonymous said...

I came back to check in on you. How are you feeling? Better? Worse? The same? Thinking of you!


Anonymous said...

Hi Jackie. <3 I have been thinking about you a lot now that I am a mother of a beautiful baby girl. I just looked you up and read your blog and wow my heart goes out to you. I can't even imagine your loss and I'm going to hold my husband extra tight tonight. It's been so long, but I always thought you were out there being a crazy awesome mom and it appears you are. I would love to see you again soon and hope to hear from you. Love Robyn