Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Exposed. Can You See Me Now?

(I've had this post in my draft files for a couple of months, waiting, I suppose, for things to change. It is not a pretty post. Things have not changed. Well, maybe they have, in that I do not feel medicine is the answer right now, and I do wonder if some kind of counseling might be beneficial.

Don't be worried. I am, for the most part, all right. I know from past experience that I will regain my equilibrium eventually. There are plenty of reasons for my feeling this way. I can't quite muster up the "ooomph" to write about it all yet. Lack of time is a factor as well.)

Maybe growth is not the main purpose of life, but I believe it ranks fairly high on the list. Certainly one of our tasks is to use what we have been given in the best way we can.

I have to admit I have been bogged down lately. And the "truth" is, I don't know if I can get up. I am an optimist in my head but in my heart there lurks a doubter. There is depression. It is not severe enough to keep me crying in bed all day. I do still get up and go to work and I manage to get my youngest back and forth to school. But honestly, that is about it.

Several years ago, I took anti-depressants. At that time, the doctor said I had dysthymia. I took the medicine for a while and went to counseling sessions with him. But that gets expensive, and I decided to get off the medicine and drop the counseling sessions. I am not ignorant on the counseling front. I spent a lot of time working with a substance abuse counselor learning how to deal with my reactions to my son's problems. I spent a short time in personal counseling for my own issues before that. I've had some support in the area of growth and I can read a self-help book as well as anybody.

My head knows all this stuff about growth and acceptance of my own imperfections. My heart is heavy and needs help. If my heart will not listen to the logic of my head, does that not send a signal that my body needs help? And wouldn't I be wise to heed such a signal?

(I know there might be a tendency, especially in matters such as this, to tell a person like myself to allow God to come in and work on me, to transform me from the inside out. Believe me, He is there, and He is working. But as my mama always taught me, He also gave me sense enough not to walk in front of a moving school bus (or eighteen wheeler, or train--whatever). I personally prefer the train metaphor because I am on the track and I feel the rumbling beneath my feet and I know that if I do not do something to get myself off this particular track, that train will eventually overcome me. It may be in the form of a wasted life, where I have spent too many years in this low-grade misery to get up and do something.

The rumbling undercurrent is a constant in my life. The thing is, its effects are cumulative. The longer I wait to take the help I need, the slower I move, and the closer that big heavy train gets to overcoming me. The medicine is a tool of sorts, the "switch" that is necessary to divert the train to another part of the track, thereby saving me from premature destruction.)

I don't know if I will call my doctor for the medicine. I know that I do not want to enter into more counseling at this time. I think that is okay for now. And there are also other things I can do to help myself: exercise (even a thirty minute walk several times a week), eat more balanced and healthy meals, work on being less isolated and withdrawn (I have signed up for a Leisure Learning photography class) , be more attentive to my spiritual practices, look for another job that is a better fit for me, work on my home environment (even thirty minutes a day).

See? My head knows what to do. But my heart is exhausted. It just wants to sit down and quit.


  1. Annie, I'm so sorry you're feeling like this. Just reading about it reminds me of where I was a couple of years ago and that makes me sad to think you might be feeling like that.

    However, I do think you're still thinking rationally and have everything in perspective and know what to watch for so I'm not going to preach to the choir.

    But...what I will do is pray for you. Lots and lots of prayers. Sometimes when we can't do the pressing into God others can do it for us. As I press into him these next few weeks I'll remember to ask Him to go press up against you, too.

    I hope that helps...

  2. Thank you Jules I appreciate the prayers. You are correct in observing that I am still thinking rationally. Thinking rationally is one of my gifts (or curses, depending on how you look at it!). Sometimes, for me, anyway, just "speaking" this stuff helps clear things out and makes way for me to move on.

    Hey Rach! Thank you ma'am!

  3. Exposure is the first step. You are headed in the right direction.

    Praying for you...

  4. I have come to know this feeling, Annie.
    I think you are doing everything you can that is good for you right now and the fact that you are so attentive at least to how you are feeling is a ood sign...
    Sometimes we just want to ignore what is going on inside of us but that never helps...
    Sending good thoughts your way...

  5. :-( NOW. Go get the meds NOW. Do all the other healthy lifestyle stuff -- that is a must. You don't have to do the counselling bit, either. But you need to go ahead and get your hand on that train switch you were talking about!

  6. Beth, I think you are so right. I think exposure opens the way for healing to begin. Thank you for the prayers, they are very much needed.

    RCJ, I know you are familiar with these feelings and I pray that you will be able to find a way to live peacefully with your grief.

    Oh Linda, I appreciate your concern. I hope I am not in denial, but I will probably give myself a little more time before I call for the meds again. (Nope, I'm not in denial, but I am stubborn!)


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