Depression with Richard Bleil
Some days are just more difficult than others. Today was a terrible day for me. I hit a level of depression I don’t recall hitting recently. The reality is that I really didn’t like where my head was at.
Yes, this is another of my myriad of posts to tell you that if you feel this way, you are not alone. We, you and I, are in this together, and while I did spend part of the day playing with guns, I never would turn one on myself. (Take a deep breathe, friends, it’ll never happen.) See, as miserable as I might be, an act such as that would not alleviate the depression. In fact, it would have no effect at all save to pass the sadness on to my friends, those who I love and who I know love me and would worsen it. I could never do that to my friends. But, that doesn’t think the thoughts don’t cross my mind.
It started with a dream, a dream that was so depressing that it woke me up at 4 AM. It was a dream of teaching, and while I used to dream about it, they have turned into nightmares. I’ve suffered a lot of loss in my life, but I think that this loss has hit me as hard as anything else. I still struggle to move on, with the idea that I’ve given up on teaching altogether because of what happened in the spring. I still feel like I’m drifting, an arc with no rudder. At one time, I felt like I had purpose, and had reached the pinnacle of my career goals, and today I’m struggling to find purpose.
When I’m feeling so down, I try, often in vain, to at least accomplish something. My house has fallen into disarray, a clear sign of my deteriorating state of mental health and hope. I’ve spent two days trying to straighten up things I should have been keeping up with, making progress but still behind. Today I found the strength, somehow, to continue the quest. Since I’ve started working with Pampered Chef, I find that I’ve purchased so many of their products that they don’t even all fit in my tiny kitchen. Today I took down most of my little dining room lab to make room for the small appliances I’ve acquired. I’ve even gone so far as to purchase a kitchen hutch which should be delivered sometime late this week. That should be interesting since it’s the first item I’ve ever intentionally had delivered here to my address rather than to my mailbox, but I’m not sure I would have the strength to move it here alone.
I worked a little bit more on an outline for a book I want to try to dictate rather than type. I’ve been struggling with the ending, and have come to realize that, if it is to be a happy ending (which maybe it won’t be), I’ll need another character. That means weaving a new thread into the fabric of the story line. It’s interesting that even with my depth of depression I can still be somewhat creative.
When I’m depressed, I also tend to spend money. This is not a good thing. Today, I agreed to purchase an old piano. It looks to be nineteenth century (I hope to learn more about it tomorrow). It’s an upright, but I do not know if it has grand piano key action or not. I’m kind of hoping it does. This will replace an old piano I had many years ago and sorely miss today. The seller claims he has had it tuned every year and that his wife plays it, so if it’s tunable it should be in good shape. Of course, I do have an electronic piano and a Midi synthesizer I’ve purchased in the past year as well so my friend can help me learn how to play and write music, but it will be nice to add this classic instrument to my collection. Another friend of mine is helping me find a guitar. I do seem to have a musical soul. Even as I write this, I’m listening to music and it’s truly helping motivate me.
Listen, if you are struggling, you are not alone. If you can, do something to start to pull yourself out of it. My friend suggested that I go for a drive, but I couldn’t bring myself to do that. Heck, I desperately need to mow my lawn and weed, but I couldn’t find the motivation to do that either. But I did something. I cleaned a bit, I bought a piano, I did something creative. It’s about all I had the energy to do, but I did it.
Most importantly, don’t do anything to hurt yourself. People love you. When you bring harm to yourself, you’re also bringing harm to them, and something I learned a long time ago from suicides of friends and of friends’ friends is that no matter how alone and isolated you feel, harming yourself will ripple much farther than you can possibly imagine. You can do this. We can do this. Together. You and I, we will do this.