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Inspired by My Friend Helen
Pat has gone to pick up the stray mini-pumpkins from last night's jack-o-lantern lighting fest at the Presby Iris Gardens and I can see from the web-cam that she has her work cut out for her.
My friend Helen has been blogging super-honestly and it's heartening to read -- picks me up, even when the entries are sad, and makes me feel more connected to humanity. I'll try to follow her example:
Anyone who knows me knows that I'm known for my enthusiasm. So how can such an enthusiastic person be depressed? It's a good question, and it *is* unnerving to be so, as I'm used to being easily delighted, highly-appreciative, observant of my surroundings and generally ready to laugh when provoked.
Thankfully, Pat still can provoke me. From the silly to the hilarious, Pat can make me giggle. Yesterday, during a lower-than-typical point -- my period had finally arrived -- I heard a huge diesel engine expelling exhaust on our street, and said, "What's that?" even as I knew.
"It's me," Pat said. That's just silly. And from a few weeks ago, a friend of my mom died, who she never allowed herself to be romantic with, as she believed he had served in the Norwegian version of Hitler Youth as a kid. When he died, Pat said, "He may have been an anti-Semite, but he was *her* anti-Semite." Hilarious.
Do I feel free, coming out as depressed? Sort of. I'm grateful that my employer does not discriminate based on genetics -- and though I've got no proven connection between my genes and this depression, somehow that non-discrimination policy is encouraging me to be myself.
I woke up, reasoning, hardly anyone reads your blog in any case, Sarah....No offense meant to anyone who does, and thank you for doing so. In other words, if I weigh what it has been costing me to stay silent, rather than write and share my actual feelings against playing it safe and avoiding this topic of prolonged sadness, I feel less ultimately vulnerable in choosing to share it.
The other day, I was speaking with a friend who will be visiting us from a faraway country. I have not seen my friend in years. She was joking (or not) about how she'd need to abstain from chocolate, so that she wouldn't be heavy when she saw us.
I told her, "I wish my head weren't so heavy. I don't think I'm the person you remember first meeting anymore," and then I began to cry.
"Oh, Sarah, I haven't yet made my flight-plans. Let me know if you want me to take an extra day off and we can just sit in the house and talk if you need to."
I didn't accept my friend's offer, and then I almost wrote to her later, agreeing. Discretion won for once, though, and I opted to let her go home on schedule.
I need to thank God that this depression isn't grandly-justified, and really, is probably based on low-humility; I thought I would be further along in life by now -- even saying that aloud makes me feel ungrateful. It's irrational, as on the one hand, in my early-twenties, I couldn't imagine what the future held, and certainly didn't expect it to be what it has become -- with a partner of 17 years so far; and a chunk of time spent in India, doing meaningful work; and being cat-parents to two sister-cats; and being a highly-successful grad student; and being the aunt of four great kids; and living in a gorgeous town in a great house, but still....
I care too much about what others think of me; I'm not yet a famous writer; I did not have a child organically or otherwise, and haven't yet determined how in any case to leave a meaningful legacy; and in my ego-centric mind, I thought I'd be more famous generally by now. I think these are my main reasons for the depression.