To be honest, I’m not sure I’m ready – I would be if the nature of my job was different – but I feel I should get back on the wagon. I might have to live with these feelings long term so I need to learn how to manage them in normal life. I’m still a bit weepy most days and I’m anxious about how that will translate to my working environment. But the isolation of being home alone all day is getting to me quite a lot now. And of course, I can’t afford to stay on sick pay. I’m poor enough even when I’m working.
I’ve taken a few steps to address a couple of the practical issues that are exacerbating my depression, with differing degrees of success, and I’m planning some others. But mostly I feel like I have so many things in my life that I need to fix, many of which are beyond my control, and I just don’t know where to start.
To rub salt in the wound, my cat has stopped eating altogether and seems very unhappy. He is very old and I think he might be on the way out. I don’t know how I can cope if he leaves me too. 11 months ago
.. put back on antidepressants/anti-anxiety meds for the first time since 2002. I feel weird about this. My doctor has advised me to get some exercise and to spend my time off constructively catching up on things I’ve neglected in the build-up or sorting things out. But I am so low in energy, sleepy and weepy that I don’t feel able to do much. My brain is so fuzzy. I am terrified of being alone for long, but it’s inevitable in the situation. Yet I know that when I do spend time with people all I do is cry and make it hard for them to be around me, and push them away. I don’t know what to do for the best. 11 months ago
..but in the last six weeks my life has changed irrevocably, maybe irreparably. I have been cut out or rejected by several people who I thought were permanent and loving fixtures in my life, and the shapes of my relationships and my future have changed drastically. I am in deep, deep grief and almost completely without support.
This has brought on an episode of depression the like of which I haven’t seen since I recovered from my long-term depression in 2002. I am tearful and crying more often than not, getting about three hours of sleep a night and waking at 5.30am, and I feel utterly hopeless. I can’t smile. I’m not really eating. I have no energy. I am battling the urge to self-harm and having a lot of thoughts of death, which are something I’ve not really experienced before even in the depths of my previous depression. I guess it’s the contrast – now that I’ve been happy I know what I’m missing, and I just can’t bear feeling like this.
I went to see my parents yesterday and collapsed on the floor in hysterical tears the second I got there. Mum put me to bed at 1pm with a sleeping tablet, waked me up at 5 to feed me a veggieburger, then put me back to bed. I was supposed to go to a family party today but it was agreed that I was in no fit state and this morning I drove home, feeling like a zombie.
I am astonished that I have been hit this hard. I always felt that I was recovered from depression and was now resilient. Just a few weeks ago I told someone that I would never be so depressed again. But here I am again. It seems that I can cope with life when it’s going well – CBT taught me that, and I had it at a time when I had an objectively good life. But when the rug of my life is pulled from under me and all my foundations are shaken to pieces, I just can’t cope with my emotions.
It’s 9pm now and I feel ready to sleep again now but to be honest I am dreading tomorrow. I hate waking up. I’ve got the day off work because I was supposed to be at this party. I need to try and make an appointment to see the doctor as soon as I can. I don’t know what he’s going to be able to do, because even the best anti-depressants take a couple of weeks to work. I don’t know how I’m going to go to work – it’s not exactly a stress-free environment – or run my workshop, which requires me to be all happy and positive. I need time off. And a whole new life. 11 months ago