When you’re out of commission as long as I’ve been, things tend to pile up. All those little things you didn’t feel like doing before are now in front of you. This is true for me even though I have had people help me so much. For instance, the church went in to help fix our air conditioner. While they were there, they figured, holy crap these people can’t find their floor – or their cabinets – or likely their sanity. So they cleaned also.
If you know someone who is ill either mentally, physically, or both, and you’re wondering what to do – that’s it. Clean. If they are at all open to the idea, it is a huge help to them, and they likely aren’t going to ask for it because it’s embarrassing. So that and cooking – both great ideas. They might even go to your church if you do it.
Anyway, in spite of this, I still find myself overwhelmed by the amount of stuff that I’ve gotten behind on. Since we had so many clothes, enough to make a new carpet and then some, they bagged many of them up in leaf bags for us to sort through ourselves. Which we will . . . eventually. But right now, the idea of even starting this project makes me itch.
Itch like my head, because now was a perfect time to come up with the little buggers. Sometimes I even wonder if I’m really better, but my husband assures me I am. I want to go out again, I want to do things again, I smile again. The problem is that there is so much left over from when I could do squat that I don’t even know where to begin. I was told I could skip my Friday treatment. So I did, and I went back on Thursday after getting home on Wednesday. I can’t even drive yet, but I’m back at work.
Or I was, until Friday around 10 AM when I had to go home. I just couldn’t figure out what to do with myself. Not like there weren’t things to do, but there were too many things both at work and at home that I was thinking about, and I had no idea how to prioritize them. Of course I know now that the head itching, which was distracting itself, was not psychological for once. So I can treat that. But there isn’t a shampoo for prioritizing.
I just can’t figure out how so much got away from me. I’ve been in treatment for 3.5 weeks, but even before the ECT, I wasn’t getting anything done because of the depression. Its much easier to say “Yes I should do laundry, but that bed looks comfy” etc., etc. So now I have so many decisions to make that at times I will skip an official meal because I would have to decide what I was going to eat. Overwhelmation is taking its toll.
June is a big month. My Things turned 13 and 17 – yes, you heard right. I can believe 13 for Thing Two – she’s been thirteen for the last three years at least. But 17 for Thing One? You realize how old that makes me, right? If you know me on Facebook, you already know – I turned 41 three days ago. I can’t figure out how so much has happened. Turns out that the world goes on even when you don’t.
In some ways, I needed this depression to understand how much things meant to me. Things like, well, my things – my children and the other people who care for me. I feel I’ve gotten much closer to several people through this, including my parents. They love me more than I realized, and have even told me so. I’ve seen how good so many people can be, and I’ve been inspired to be that way myself.
But where to begin? I don’t know. When you are driving to a big city 6 hours away on Sunday, then driving home Friday afternoon, only to repeat all of this again the following Sunday, your regular life takes a back seat. Normal everyday things like getting housework done or even remembering to fill my pills regularly, take a back seat. There just isn’t any time. And I cannot begin to describe the homesickness. A hotel away from it all sounds nice, but only for a certain amount of time. You start to miss your own town, your own house, your own bed, your children, on certain weeks your husband, and your old routine. And you want to smack the ceiling with a stick to shut up those people upstairs.
I haven’t been able to drive since beginning treatment. While I was in Dallas, driving was scary anyway, and on weeks with my father you could forget going anywhere. He’s 75 and much more nervous than he used to be on the road. I’ve always been nervous, so there’s not a lot of change there. Yet that meant more isolation on days I was with him. I could go out with my husband at least, but that traffic was still unreal. I don’t know how people live like that on a normal basis. No wonder so many in Dallas are getting ECT.
Driving represents a certain amount of freedom for me, and I never realized how I took it, like so many things, for granted. Or how much I used the word “thing” to describe everything. Sorry about that. I don’t have great memory loss, but I do get flustered easily. So here I am, discovering how much I’ve missed, and wanting for once to catch up, but getting confused easily and wanting to go hide under my covers at times. Getting a few zaps doesn’t fix things right away. Recovery takes more time, and as usual, I have no patience. Life doesn’t have much patience for you either. Get on the train or get off, it seems.
I don’t know if I’m ready for work, or even if this is the job I should stay with forever. I like my coworkers, especially my immediate boss. I get decent pay and really good insurance and retirement. It involves History and English, which are two subjects I’m good at. I’m proud of my job, and worked hard to get it. My daughter will be in college in a couple of years, and it would be nice to be around there. However, it doesn’t have an exact job description, which sometimes leaves you floundering around, wondering what you’re supposed to be doing exactly. I feel guilty when I’m not working hard enough, which seems to be most of the time. Not only that, I have a hard time concentrating on job tasks I often find boring when so many other tasks need doing elsewhere. That work / life balance idea is rather laughable. Yet I’m not sure what else to do. If I quit, then I need another job, but what? I’m not sure I could bring myself to decide. I can’t even figure out what clothes to keep.
So keep in mind how I really do want to get it in gear, which means catching up on both my own blog and the blogs of others. This used to be a big part of my life, and I think it would help me to make it so again. But I am struggling right now to get my life put back together, to figure out what is most important and what should be first. I’m not sure how to do that. Old Bob Frost said “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I, I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference.”
I like that poem, but I have a question. Which road is less traveled by, and how do you figure that out?
Some say the world will end in fire
Some say in ice,
From what I’ve tasted of desire,
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if I had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.
“Fire and Ice” by Robert Frost
Monday morning I woke up at four am to my husband yammering about something. Turned out he was talking into his cell phone. He’s a mechanic for the city police, and his boss was telling him to go put on snow tires. At four am. So the cops would be safe. The mechanic working on said cars? Eh, whatever.
So he got ready to trudge the normally fifteen minute drive (which would take an hour this time) as I looked at the window. And what to my wondering eye would appear? No, not reindeer. Just a heck of a lot of snow. Gobs is the right terminology I think. Gobs of freaking snow on the ground, and snow blowing through the air like billions of tiny flakes of dandruff. You’re welcome for that imagery. I specialize in this sort of stuff.
Like poet Robert Frost. Get it? Frost? And the poem is all about cold and destruction? I know; I chose perfectly. I think it’s supposed to mean something else entirely, something profound, but for me, today, it meant a snow day trapped in my house with the Things. Oh, sure, at first I was happy. I saw, at four am, that the schools were closed. No word on the university. I made several internal threats that they had better be closed, or else I’d get mad and no one else would care. So there! And I went back to bed.
At six am, I woke up again and checked the T.V. I waited as the school closings scrolled across the screen. There was school after school after school . . . who cares? Where’s mine, huh? Finally, it reported the university closed. YES! I was about as happy as I was as a kid when they announced a snow day. No work! Hooray! It’s not like I had a test or anything I was dreading, just work that I didn’t happen to feel like doing. Worse, I didn’t feel like getting to work, which even on fair weather days is an extraordinary pain in the butt.
So after bouncing on my bed a few times, I ate breakfast, checked the computer, and went back to bed. Bed is GREAT on cold days. I highly recommend it. Then the Things got up. I forgot to take the idea of the Things and me entrapped in a closed space together for several hours into account. It turned out to be a not very nice thing. The whole thing got off with a bang when Thing Two woke up her sister, who freaked out because OMG we were not going to school and Mom are you sure it’s closed? Yes, I was sure. I mean, like I’d just decide none of us would go anywhere for no reason? Dream about it yes, but not actually do it.
So then we were all awake. And the Wii remotes were dead. No Wii. Crap. They plugged them into the charger that takes roughly 81 hours to recharge things. Then Thing One claimed the kid’s computer. Thing Two was annoyed that she was not being entertained. I had Thing One get off the kid’s computer. This works for roughly ten minutes until Thing One, compelled like metal to a super magnet, snaps right back in front of the computer. It’s like she can’t help it. I don’t know where she gets that compulsion from, but it sure is annoying. Especially since she doesn’t do useful stuff like blogging. She plays something called Animal Jam, which apparently is some form of computer crack, because she would play it 24 hours a day if you let her.
So Thing One and Thing Two played together for a while. Usually they play pretty well together for two kids four years apart. Not today. No, today consisted of screeching, crying, poking, yelling, and stomping. And that was just what I was doing. Chores were assigned and reluctantly completed. Outside the snow continued to blow. I decided God seriously needs some dandruff control shampoo.
I cooked my fabulous specialty of Kraft macaroni and cheese and chicken nuggets for lunch. Strangely enough, Thing One ate the macaroni. Normally I do not have the Mac n Cheese magic touch that her grandmother possesses. It’s boxed mac n cheese. I feel as if I have let down all woman kind because I can’t even make that right. Oh, well. Today, though, she ate it. Maybe she was afraid of the shrieking.
I’m trying to remember what all happened in between various crisis. I guess I slept. There was a Nook emergency in which Thing Two lost some of her art work that was destined for greatness (I’m sure it was at least as good as most of the stuff in the galleries these days). But it disappeared! This is why I recommend markers and paper. That doesn’t’ disappear as easily. What am I saying? Like anyone could find a marker in the house. Or paper for that matter.
We played the Sims on computer. It’s like an animated dollhouse and a whale of a lot of fun. You can kill them in lots of awesome ways. Um, and you can make a family and stuff too! Our current family was the monster family and consisted of a Sim werewolf, a plant person, a girl we were trying to get bitten by a vampire, a zombie, and a zombie clown. We were going to have the clown be a ghost after having him get eaten by the giant plant in the backyard, but that didn’t work so we made him a zombie instead. Anyway, this was fun until Thing One was attracted back to Animal Jam on the other computer. This annoyed me. Apparently Sims monsters were not entertaining enough. Not enough computer crack.
There was more arguing and pouting and then the Wii remotes started working again, yea Hallelujah, and they played Star Wars and randomly shot at stuff. I checked my blogs. I spoke to my husband, stuck off putting on snow tires that he would then have to strip off the very next day. Sort of like Sisyphus and his rock. Look it up. Anyway, he wasn’t certain if he’d get done in time to make it home. I informed him that if he didn’t, the children might be head first in the snow outside. I mostly was kidding.
Finally, the blizzard let up, and we were going to go outside, but I couldn’t find my other snow boot that has quit repelling water anyway. I am always prepared for emergencies. Still, I was able to take a picture of Hoth, the ice planet from Star Wars that currently made up our backyard. Here is a scene with Luke Skywalker finding a giant Yoda bobblehead in the snow. Yes we are all hopeless geeks here.
So now the snow is lightening up, and I’m sure it will do this just enough that we’re stuck getting out in the mess tomorrow. Somehow, after today, I’m thinking maybe that won’t be such a bad thing after all.