If you follow this blog, you may have noticed it’s been a really long time since I’ve posted anything. There are several reasons for this. One of them is that I inherited some money when my mother passed away, and that’s allowed us to take a step out of the grinding poverty in which we’d been living for so long. I found that without the stress of poverty, I was a lot less angry all the time, and consequently had less to say. So that was maybe a good thing.
But the other thing is this: a little over a year ago, I started a terrible depressive episode. Calling it an “episode” seems really wrong, because it’s not an episode, it’s just my life now. Being depressed. And by depressed I don’t mean sad. I don’t really feel sad; I don’t really feel anything. They tell me this is called ahedonia, which translates to lack of joy in life. They say that depression has “Three As,” Ahedonia, Apathy, and Amotivation. I don’t feel anything, I don’t really care about anything, and I have no desire to do anything. Sitting down to write this blog post took me a number of weeks of coaching myself to do it, and I don’t really know what made me do it today. Maybe I was especially bored.
I’m also scared all the time, there’s that. I’m scared to write this. I’m scared to leave my house, even to go into the back yard to check on the garden. It takes amazing force of will, which I don’t always have. I can call up the will to leave the house if I have an appointment or something like that. I don’t like it, but I can do it. If I don’t absolutely have to, though, forget it. Last summer I went swimming a lot, three days a week at least. This summer I got a pool pass, but I’ve hardly used it. I just don’t have the energy.
I don’t know what it is. Mostly, I just feel hopeless. Sometimes I think I’m too broken; I’ve been hurt too much and disappointed too much to believe anything better is possible. I don’t know what it means to do anything other than sit on the sofa and stare at the walls. Maybe pet the cat, if a cat happens along. That’s the best I can hope for, I think.
My therapist asked me at the end of our last session whether I was more afraid of failure or more afraid of success. I was supposed to think about this over the intervening two weeks until our next session. My immediate response was going to be “Success, because I know what failure looks like and it’s comfortable.” That may still be my answer. But you know, it doesn’t feel like fear. It feels like I have no idea what success even means. I have no model for it. It doesn’t grip me; it has no substance. To me, the closest I can get to success is sitting on the sofa with my cat, or maybe watching Netflix at night with mu husband. Because I’m not in pain, and success is not being in active pain.
I think I’m down below the surface of pain, down in the dark where you can’t feel anything. I think sometimes I can’t go on like this, but the truth is I could probably go on pretty much infinitely, which scares the hell out of me. But the fear of that is fleeting. The fear of the pain I’d have to face before I could surface is a lot stronger. I don’t want to feel any more pain; I’ve felt enough.
I’ve run into a wall writing this. With those last few words, “I’ve felt enough,” something in me uncoupled and my reasons for sitting down to write this were worn out. There’s nothing left in me. There’s nothing left to say.