Monday, March 16, 2015

I Am Not Doing Well Right Now

No, I was wrong. The grief I feel at this time of year really hit me hard last night. Terribly hard. I had an appointment this morning with my psychiatrist, and my blood pressure was 183/90. Not as bad as it was recently in a doctor's office, but still very high. And I can feel it, too. In my head, behind my eyes, in my bloodstream. I can always tell when it's going too fast. I can tell when my pulse is high, which it was.

I've had a very stressful few weeks, and the stress continues. Last night I could barely function and had an emotional breakdown. Becca tried to help me through it by asking questions to see if they'd lead anywhere. She ended up asking me, point blank, "Do you feel like you have to punish yourself for being alive?"

And, yeah, I think that about sums it up. A lot of it, anyway.

Apparently I've had undiagnosed ADHD since childhood, and all of the behaviors I'd developed to compensate for it just went away for those years when I was on Lexapro. I was displaying what my counselors thought was (and diagnosed as) Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Agoraphobia, and Non-Specific Mood Disorder, and while those things are there, they seem to sometimes be symptoms of my ADHD. I guess it feels like we've finally traced the river all the way back to its source. ADHD is something we can treat with medication and counseling, and it actually explains many, many occasions in my life--occasions that I still remember and have bad feelings about, going as far back as age 5--as something psychological rather than just me being... wrong, in some unexplainable, horrible way. It explains to me why some things that seem like they're easy for other adults are so hard for me. It makes me realize I'm not just lazy. I'm disabled. And I can try to live with that and have a real life.

It does make me feel better.

But there are a lot of traumas that I haven't dealt with very well because of the ADHD. My car accident, for one. And for another, my sister dying. It feels terribly wrong and unfair that my sister should die and I should be alive, because deep down inside I feel like that was a mistake on the part of... something. Like my own death would be less sad and less... unwelcome, I guess. It just seems so wrong to me. I've spent my whole life expecting to be invalidated, and for me to be the one bad things happen to, and for something that bad to happen to a different member of my family, let alone a 13 year-old girl, four days before her birthday... my sister, my own goddaughter... no, I can't make sense of it. I have had a terrible time accepting it, and I still haven't. I know it's what happened: my sister developed bone cancer and after a year of chemotherapy she passed away in the middle of the night. But it's so fucking wrong.

So I guess, yeah, somewhere inside I feel like it's not right for me to have any sort of life or to be happy for too long. Happiness eventually makes me nervous, like it's inviting some sort of badness in. I feel like everything comes to nothing for me and nothing turns out the way I want it, and that that's the way things are supposed to be. I have problems letting myself feel good. Or wanting things for myself. Or getting things. Orr hoping for things to happen. I don't really know what hope feels like anymore. Not really. I just understand what the word means intellectually.

Having just gone through another spin on antidepressants--which made me realize that I cannot be on antidepressants because they just increase my ADHD fog and take away my motivation--my body is wrecked and I weigh more than I ever have. It's hard to do things. Everything still seems complex and overwhelming. I feel like I'm at my lowest and I don't know if the new medication I'm on now is really effective or not, although I can focus and concentrate better when I try.

It feels like spring today. The snow is almost entirely gone, the ice is definitely gone, and things are warming up. It's 55 degrees today, and it's nice to have the window open and hear the birds. It's cloudy as hell, but it's still nice. After my psychologist this morning, Becca and I went out for breakfast, something we haven't done in a while. I like doing that. Getting breakfast with her is one of my favorite things in the world; it makes me feel like things are better. Like I can come back from this.

Like I'm easing back into the world.

But this has been a stressful few weeks, and this weekend was pretty awful. And I know now that I'm punishing myself just for being alive. It was a longtime self-esteem problem that finally broke me when Ellen died.

I don't want to live like this anymore, but at least I want to live. Now I've got to build up from there.

8 comments:

Some Guy said...

I never know quite what to say after reading posts like this. I believe in you. I'm glad you want to live. I've grown to not just to like the stuff you share online, but rely on it. You've become an essential part of my daily life. I don't mean for this to sound creepy. I just think you're a cool person and I like what you have to say. I will continue to root for you!

Roger Owen Green said...

At the risk of sounding like Kathy Bates in Misery, I'm one of your biggest fans. "Hang in there" seems inadequate...

Pat O'Connor said...

I'm a fan too. Best wishes to you and Becca.

Kelly Sedinger said...

Here's another voice that's in your corner. All the best!

Keir said...

Reading your comments about the snow melting made me think back to the American version of Abbey Road; instead of beginning with Come Together, the final album recorded starts with the the gentle notes of Here Comes the Sun. I always hated how the Americans desecrated their albums, but here was a revelation- after everything they'd gone through and the lingering anger and fear of the future, George can comment on how the ice is slowly melting; that it's been years since it's been clear.
I've been lifted as I cycle to work in the morning (near Dachau where I've been training to be a guide at the camp for the last few months during my free time which is hardly soul-enriching) with another song I rediscovered-Sinatra's version of 'Cycles'. Lyrics, music and voice just match.

Roger Owen Green said...

Keir-I am confused. Here Comes the Sun starts Side 2 of Abbey Road, if you played LPs, which I did.

Keir said...

Roger- OK, I was introduced to the album via cassette tape in which the songs were rearranged given the format. BUT I had read that in the US it had originally been rearranged as well; I've probably misremembered as Hillary would put it...

Roger Owen Green said...

Most of the Beatles music from Sgt Pepper forward was as the Beatles intended. (Though Magical Mystery Tour was a double EP in the UK, expanded to an album by the Americans, and the Hey Jude/Beatles Again album, of mostly singles, did not exist in the UK). Still the white album, Yellow Submarine Abbey Road and Let It Be were as planned. Whereas the albums from Revolver back to the beginning...

Oh, and sorry, Mr. Frog for co-opting your blog like this.