Until the last couple of years, I was a sack of dreams with fading hopes holding them together.
I think those dreams fell out and got soggy so I hung them up to dry but they were never the same and it might be time to finally throw them away for good.
I’m not sure anyone knows how truly bad I’ve been doing. My partner and a very small handful of friends, yes, but, at large, no.
I have had depression (and apparently anxiety) for most of my adult life. I’m terribly fortunate to have not been suicidal in well over ten years, but mental health is still a struggle. I often think people, when they find out I’m not suicidal, when they find out I know I have to just keep going, they tend to go hands off as though there’s no concern. I clam up and don’t tell anyone how truly bad I’m doing. The song and dance carries on.
I went to see my doctor of eight years the other day. I told her my depression and anxiety are at a particularly bad point. She literally could not have cared less. She nervous laughed and carried on with our incredibly weird appointment.
It was disheartening.
I often feel like no one gives a sh*t. That no one cares or thinks of me or wants to be my friend. I constantly feel like a tremendous burden and that everyone hates me. Not just doesn’t like me, but hates me. I feel like the only way I can keep people invested in even being my friend is by trying way too hard pretty much all the time. I used to be good at reaching out to others and, as my depression and anxiety have worsened, I’ve all but fallen off from it because I feel like I can only be an annoyance to any and every person I know.
My partner being the only exception. I am beyond fortunate for his love and support and, as I’ve said before, if mental illness could be reasoned away with love and friendship, I’d never suffer from depression or anxiety again.
I don’t believe it to be an overstatement that I’m often feeling dire. I can’t stress enough how hard I try or how much I force myself to just carry on even though I feel so deeply sad.
Today, as I read about Opportunity and her last message, I crumbled:
My battery is low and it’s getting dark.
I ache from those words.
I’ve long since identified with satellites and robots. I feel my programming was wrong. I’ve been unwanted by the beings who created me. I have been at a point (lower than this) where, I, too, had a battery low and it was dark, indeed. I tried to kill myself in 2007. I was found and taken to the hospital. When I realized it hadn’t worked, I was devastated. The following day, my parents took me to Chinese food (I’ve never liked Chinese food) and I clearly remember my dad asking me, “So, do you feel better now?”
I’m not sure my parents have ever known or understood me, despite my trying very hard for them, too.
I may have been devastated at the time that I survived, but I’m so grateful to be alive. Even feeling as awful as I do every day, even dealing with my chronic illness for over 20 years, I’m still so grateful to be alive. And I’m grateful that I’m grateful to be alive. I’d far rather have to endure all these difficulties than ever give up. I love being alive so much. I realize that must sound strange given everything else, but it’s true.
Dental hygiene is a strange trigger for me; I am very careful about my teeth and dental care. I’ve had sensitivity in one tooth for a few months now. I went to see my dentist (who I love) in January and they did all kinds of x-rays and exams and, fortunately, found nothing is wrong. But the tooth is still sensitive. They did a minor fix but it didn’t take the sensitivity away so I had to go back on Tuesday. I have been physically ill for days on top of everything and I dragged myself to the appointment because I didn’t want to miss it. As soon as I walked in the door, Dr. Tran looked at me and said, “What’s wrong? You don’t look well.” He said it with care and concern and I told him he was right. I explained that I didn’t want to miss the appointment. He knows I take dental hygiene seriously. He said he would do something that would hopefully allow the dentin to regrow and eventually eliminate the sensitivity. The whole time he was being so kind.
As I sat there in the chair after he was done, he said, “I want you to lay there, close your eyes, and think about peace.” I lay there, thinking about peace, and the room was filled with a beautiful tone and vibration. He told me he had recently acquired a Tibetan singing bowl and thought I could benefit from it.
He was right.
Before I left, he asked me to come look at it. The bowl was large, probably a foot in diameter, and beautifully crafted. He told me I should take a video of him striking it so I could listen to it again if I wanted to. I made the video. I touched the bowl and felt the vibrational “sing” of it.
It was a beautiful, soothing, and magical moment where I’d not expected one.
I went home and thought about some of the most consistently soothing things, which the singing bowl was now added to.
Years ago, by sheer accident, I found putting a bag of rice on my head to be insanely soothing. I often keep a bag of rice around because it’s so nice.
Many months ago, my friend Lucas sent me a message about a dream he’d had. I’m paraphrasing, but in his dream he encountered a giant whale who spoke with Alan Watt’s voice (from then on we referred to him as the “Watts Whale”). Apparently the Watts Whale had invited me to come sit in his mouth while he spoke with Alan Watts’ words. There is something cosmically soothing to me about that entire situation.
In my most difficult times, if I can think clearly (which is often harder than it sounds), I try to remind myself of any of these moments and so many more. I try to remind myself I have a partner who is magical and wonderful and so much better of a partner than I could have dreamed of. I try to remind myself I get to live with a beautiful creature who may look like a dog but might also be a person in a dog suit.
I am so fortunate and yet I am often struggling and devastated. My anxiety and depression have been escalating for the past several years but the past six months have been the worst I’ve had since 2007. Again, I am so grateful to not worry about feeling suicidal. The holidays were especially hard for me this year, and January was rough in ways I never could have anticipated.
I am hurting. All the time. I wish it wasn’t like this. At the same time I’m trying to figure out how to manage things because it seems likely I may have to live with this forever.
I’ve been struggling so badly, and I don’t want to reach out because my brain tells me no one cares or wants to hear this. I’m so close to giving up on my dream of writing. So close I can taste just letting it all go so I no longer embarrass myself by keeping this site up.
I am a broken little robot.
My battery is low and it’s getting dark.
I love connecting with people about games. I love connecting with people, period. Both are why I wanted to become a writer. But I think I’ve failed in those endeavors. I keep going in spite of myself. I keep trying even though I don’t want to try anymore. I keep going because I think that’s just me: that I keep going even when it’s laughably dumb and pointless.
But I’m not a writer. I’m not much of anything, really.
I’m glad I’m alive, truly I am. Life is precious and I’m so grateful for it. I just wish I didn’t hurt so much quite so often.
(I wish I knew who to credit for the beautiful whale art; alas, I do not know who the artist is.)