The Rise and Fall
So having dropped my daughter off at school this morning I have spent the last hour or so sitting in my local Starbucks doing nothing other than drinking coffee and online shopping (‘Black Friday’ and all that. So basic!). I felt fine when I first went in but now, although the coffees done it’s job and I’m more alert, I feel completely drained in my body. I don’t fully understand why. Some might suggest it could have been the online shopping that did it. Looking at a screen too long. The thinking! And maybe it’s the case. But it sometimes feels like the noise and bustle of people around me (not interacting with me simply going about their business) just takes it out of me. Lately I’ve noticed that on occasion I’m a bit sensitive to prolonged, chaotic noise and….I don’t know what to call it….’busy energy’? Like sitting inside a beehive. It’s the second time in the last few weeks I’ve felt that sort of thing affect me.
I really wanted to go home and stay there. Take a shower if I was lucky enough have sufficient energy return. I had plans for this evening I was looking forward to yet it didn’t look likely now. I’d have to bail if things didn’t change. See how the day goes. Again.
I really wanted to go home but my son had asked me to go to to the local shopping hub and pick up a very niche magazine that could only be gotten from a particular shop. I didn’t want to let him down. His younger sisters needs often takes precedence as, being the elder, he is unreasonably expected to ‘understand’ more. So onto the bus I hopped, squishing myself into the single seat directly behind the driver. It’s my favourite one. It’s separated from everyone else and keeps me hidden
“Depression isn’t static” I wrote the other day. Not long after that post I stumbled across the poem Explaining My Depression To My Mother: A Conversation . It opens with the lines
“Mom, my depression is a shape shifter.
One day it is as small as a firefly in the palm of a bear,
The next, it’s the bear.”
Depression is a very in the moment thing. Continuously changing. Shifting
Down moods, fatigue, self esteem, aches, shivers all of it can grab you out of nowhere and cling on for days. Other times it realeases you much quicker, lifting suddenly like a fog clearing. And there’s no way of telling which way it’s going to go
As such, by the time I’d reached the shopping centre my depression had begun to ease. My energy levels rose. I did a little Christmas shopping. I felt ok. I got a bit hot and fed up in the long que but still I felt ok. I felt normal. Or what I understand to be ‘normal’ anyway.
Before I even got to my sons magazine my energy had returned completely. Indeed, as if to compensate for a bad week I had even more energy than I did before it was sapped away from me. And nothing was touching me. Not the busy stressy shop or the bus crawling through the traffic. I felt fine. I felt normal. I felt human.
I came home managed to have that longed for shower. Put shopping away. The book fair at my daughters school no longer feels like an ordeal (I have always loved School book fairs!!). I might even cook properly. This evening looks promising, but even if I don’t make it I’m still pleased with my small achievements
- The shower
- Going into a stressy place and coming out unscathed
- Putting the shopping away
It probably won’t make much sense to some, but what the some don’t understand is that it doesn’t make much sense to me either. I can’t explain it. All I can do is describe it.
“ Why are you finding this week so difficult?” I was asked late last night “What is it?”
“I don’t know. I’m sorry, I just don’t know”
There is no rhyme or reason to depression One moment it’s the firefly, the next the bear…