one step forward from three hundred and one steps back

yesterday I felt better. I even feel better today. I’d say it progressed on monday afternoon from being down-at-the-bottom depressed to monday evening feeling half angst-y and half numb. I want to say yesterday I felt better; I think I did. but I also feel like I wasn’t feeling anything at all. I think that’s something that maybe is sometimes hard to explain, or maybe hard for some people to see/understand. “feeling better” doesn’t mean happy or healed or cured. it’s a qualitative thing – meaning better but not best -  better than wanting to evaporate into nothingness, but not dancing in a field of wildflowers.

I read this article on mindbodygreen yesterday and so much of it hit home. granted, I don’t take medication anymore and I hope I never have to or do again, but I understand what is behind all of that. like even when I’m “doing ok”, the depression is still there. It is always there, hiding, lingering, being. I’m not knocking taking medication – please don’t misunderstand that – but for me, personally, there is no amount of medication that will take that away. my experience was that the medication just put a blanket over it… pushed it under the couch, so to speak. it was still there. I think – no, I know – it will always be there.

so I live with it. I guess…if that’s what this is. it doesn’t always feel like living though. that’s hard.

what’s harder – maybe – is being bipolar, or manic-depressive. whatever. being extreme. that’s what’s really hard. I often think that it would be easier to just be depressed. because when the mania, or the “up” comes inevitably the “down” will follow. it took me a while to realize this – that while the “up” feels good, the “down” feels even worse. it makes sense, when you compare it to substance abuse, why people get hooked on drugs. you know, they want to maintain the high. because the down is so painful – but only after knowing the up. if there’s no up, there’s no point of reference. and the more up I feel, the worse the down feels. almost like the difference in dropping something from different heights. like if you drop a pebbled just from your hand to the ground, it’s not such a big deal. but if you drop a brick off a ten-story building, it’s going to hit the ground hard. it’s kind of like that.

so, anyway, I kind of feel even right now. like the road is flat. no hills. but there might be some potholes. you know it was just winter. and winter always leaves potholes in the pavement.

a few years ago I taught 'six word stories' to my residents. this was my personal example.

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