Monday, August 1, 2011

Sinking-Climbing

Day 192 - Predicament

I'm in a deep funk, and it feels like I am sinking.

It seems as though it was only a couple of months ago that I emerged from my winter hibernation. I thought I was through with all that for awhile, and I expected a longer period of sunny days.

Instead, clouds follow me wherever I go. I try to make out the sun, and from the looks of others, the sun is there for them. Why do I not see it? Why is it that I only feel the sky's dark shadow over me?

I feel like I am doing the right amount of things to help propel myself forward. I'm doing my best to keep the tide going in my favor, yet it is always that undertow that wins out. Is this depression? Is this grief?

I have struggled with depression for many years, and have turned to therapy and medication to assist me with coping. I have also added new elements into my life, such as my love of gardening, or my interest in Buddhism. I have tried prayer, and have struggled to reclaim that inner peace that my soul once had. It seems that life does indeed give you more than you can handle, or perhaps more than your share to carry. I suppose those words are not true, as I would have already given up if that were the case.

I sit here and think about these words, and I know it's all par for the course. This is what I must work through. Am I depressed? Sure, I have plenty to be depressed about. Is everything dark and gloomy? No. I'm in a funk, and it will pass. Sometimes these heavy hearted days pass quickly, and other times last for weeks. I just have to be patient. It's not like there is anybody knocking at my door wondering why I haven't come out to play. And, it's not like I have to measure up to others' perception of where I should be at this point.

This is just where I am right now. Today. The saving grace is that it is quite familiar, and I have come to expect days like these. Sometimes it's just the disappointing realization that I have been pulled back under. It would be nice to think that my grief was like climbing up a ladder, getting closer and closer to the top with each reach of that next rung. Yet we all know the reality, and it certainly is not as easy as that.

We slip, we fall, and then we begin reaching back up.

Reach with me.

12 comments:

  1. ... reaching counts as exercise, i believe.

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  2. Just so long as you keep reaching, the rest of us can help pull you up. XXXX

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  3. Oh so true for me. They talk about the yo-yo effect with dieting, but I really experience a yo-yo effect with grief. Up and down, up and down. The ups never really very up, but the downs, well. . . .I guess we only can hope that it gets better. . . . .
    Hang in there, Dan.

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  4. Dan,I can so relate. I feel like I am doing things to help me move forward.Yet, I still feel like I am faking it! I too sometimes wonder if this depression? I now know it is grief.

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  5. Just when as though I've turned a corner, here comes the grief wave to slam me back down again. I have so much to do, but am having such a hard time finding the energy to accomplish it. I'm asking myself is it normal grief or depression that I should seek help for?

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  6. I identify so much with this, Dan...27 months and sometimes I think I am ok, other days not so much. Yeah, like you, no one is knocking on my door. I am by myself a lot. I go to grief groups....I volunteered...I feel like I did everything I could do but at year 2, it all meant nothing. Knocked me for a loop., Another year of grieving. Now, I feel like though maybe I don't cry as much, or as long, I am still never going to be "happy" like I was before the loss of my Mike. I will never love anyone again like that. Nothing is going to make that better. He would not want me to be this way, I know that...but while everyone can tell me what I need to do, it has to be me who feels it, and I don't. I want my old life back, that can''t happen. So I guess I don't know where I go from here.

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  7. I can so agree with this, its 23 months, and I still feel like I'm existing and not living. The ups and downs are a constant and the pain and sorrow sometimes still brings me to my knees. Especially when something happens that brings me back to bad memories of his illness and hospitalizations. I don't want this life, but I take it one day at a time, that's all I can say. I miss him so much,I just look forward to being together again someday. He was a part of every fiber of my being and now thats gone and people don't get that except for our community.

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  8. It doesn't hurt to get a professional opinion re "just grief" or depression. Depression can make grief much more difficult. I've suffered from depression for 15yrs, and it was worse this past winter with the extreme weather. I'm feeling better now, but wondered why I was feeling so much worse 2 1/2 yrs out. It was my depression and i could have gone in and had my meds increased. Grief is hard enuf without battling untreated depression too

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  9. This post causes me to reflect on many things pertaining to grief. I am at 21 months. For me, it is a dichotomy. The emotions and memories are less painful and sharp, but the hard part is sustaining the grief and the major life changes. I think I want to default to what my previous, happy life was, and somewhere in my head is the hope to recreate it. I think happiness can come again, but I have to accept a few things. One, it will never be with the same person; two, once we have seen the finality and sometimes the horrible reality of the end, we will never be the same. I think this is the definition of the term "new normal" (which I've always hated, because I don't want one). But at this point I think it's the key, we have to reach the point of acceptance, then be willing to be open to new experiences and new people and let life take its' course. This is a BIG order and can take a long time, while we try and fail and try and fail, and then hopefully someday, we will land. I for one am not there yet. The grief vs. depression question, well, I think if you stay in a perpetual state of ACUTE grief (continue to feel the way you felt the first 6 months to a year) with no relief, maybe it is more about depression. They overlap, so if you feel you may be depressed, see a therapist and by all means take whatever help you can get. I will never regret the grief therapy I had for a little over a year, it kept me grounded and gave me an extra layer of support. Bereavement takes a long time, years, so even though we get sick of feeling lousy it helps to know it's normal and part of the process. Hang in there.

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  10. I feel a kinship when I read your posts, one that I wish I did not have, but I do. No one gets it in my life, everyone keeps asking "how are you doing?", such a stupid question to ask. Thank you all for letting me tune in to how you feel, and how you get through each day.

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  11. I love reading each of your comments. It's so affirming when we can look to eachother and find recognition. There aren't too many places where we can truly express what we are experiencing, yet here we can. Here it's okay to say we are struggling, because we find that we are not alone. Well, maybe we feel alone, but through these connections, a bit less isolated.

    Dan

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