Waking Up Happy

It was really refreshing to wake up this morning unreasonably happy; no thoughts about anything in particular, except trying to remember the dreams I had last night. I walked over to turn my air conditioner off, and when I got to the window to turn the dial to the “Off” position, I wondered why I was so happy. It wasn’t even the kind of happy you experience on your best day with friends, or the jubilant relief that accompanies realizing a gnawing worry is resolved. It was, in the only way I can think to describe it, ignorant bliss (Clichés-1, Wiggygirl-0). I wasn’t sure why I was happy, but I was obviously enjoying it. Honestly, I have not felt that happy in weeks or months. Months. That’s a long time to not experience an emotion, let alone a fantastic one. This realization made me wonder how long it would be until I felt this strange elation again. After a few weeks of believing my depression was actually going away, I was hit by an especially depressive mood at the beginning of this week; unfortunately, I have to wonder if I brought it on myself. I had been sick after coming home from vacation at the beach, and through a mixture of not really wanting to go to work and guilt of probably spreading germs to my coworkers, I coerced myself to take Monday off. I texted my boss that morning and he told me it was fine if I didn’t come into work, and to inform him when I would be able to come back in (have I mentioned my boss is really chill?). Monday was spent sleeping a lot, browsing a variety of sites on my computer, maybe a little reading….nothing too productive, because I was attempting to relax and “get better”. However, as the day progressed and I knew I would have to go back to work the next day, I started feeling unmotivated, though not quite depressed yet. Since my boss hadn’t said “see you tomorrow”, rather telling me to contact him when I was feeling better, why shouldn’t I take another day off? Though I told myself I would see how I felt in the morning, I knew in the back of my mind my decision had already been made. Not wanting to tell my mom I was taking another day off, I decided I would wake up normal time and pretend I was going to work. I drove to the park behind my house to chill and listen to music/my anxiety tape while I waited for all my coworkers and mother to get off the roads. Then, I spent three hours driving around South Jersey with no actual destination in mind. I love driving, but this wasn’t supposed to be a leisurely escapade through main streets and lonely roads. This was foreshadowing for the lowest low I’ve felt in awhile. Flashback to last summer, when my depression went along unnoticed and untreated. I was so afraid and anxious to tell my boss that once soccer started I would not be able to work, I decided I simply would not, and instead texted him two days in a row saying I would not be coming to work that day. No explanations or excuses; I just would not be working, and in my last text I told him I would not come in again because soccer would be starting. Minus the vague text messages, I did the same thing I did this past Tuesday; I pretended to go to work but instead drove around aimlessly. When I told my best friend about what had occurred, she completely brushed it off. She didn’t get it. This was what I did when I was very depressed. I know now after talking to her she was trying to help by distracting me and discussing other topics, but I had to tell her this was not how to help me. I don’t know about other people, but when I am really depressed or upset about something, I don’t want people to distract me immediately. I don’t even necessarily want advice. What I really need and covet is sympathy and someone who will tell me it’s okay that I’m upset. I really would like someone who will ask questions; this will either show they are interested in what’s going on or it will help me look at the issue and work through it. After a similar conversation with my ex/guy friend, my depression became severe, and I’ve unfortunately spent the past few days feeling alone and melancholy. I barely talked to my friends and spent a lot of time inside my room, traversing the dark regions of Tumblr and listening to music that makes me sad. I excessively and genuinely cried for the first time in awhile. Luckily I conversed with my friends and therapist about this issue and, after this wonderful morning, am starting to feel sort of normal again. Though I know this intense change of mood is fleeting, I have some sense of hope for future happiness.

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“Overcome Fear and Anxiety”?

I tried to blog yesterday, but for some reason wordpress.com was blocked on my computer? Anyway, today it seems to be working okay.

Yesterday my therapist gave me a CD to listen to entitled “Overcome Fear and Anxiety”. After going through it today, I’m not sure what to think about it.

I was surprised it included a lot of Christian references, including affirmations about God/divine spirit and many verses from the Bible. I’m religious, so it did not bother me; it just seemed weird.

To spice up the affirmations, I decided to add “bitch” to some of the end of affirmations. For example, “I am confident BITCH!” I was entirely too amused with calling a disembodied voice a bitch.

Some of the sentiments expressed are untrue. For example, the speaker stated “You cannot feel love and fear at the same time”, which is entirely false.

Then, one affirmation stated, “When we fear something enough, it can become real and attracted to us”, and I automatically thought of Amnesia, which was, to say the least, not good. Then I thought, “Oh my God I’m afraid of ghosts and demons, and now they’re going to be attracted to me? That’s not a very reassuring thought!”.

The CD itself made me a little anxious and depressed, because it forced me to think about my anxiety, stress, worries and fears. This was magnified by the fact my mind combated many of the recorded statements, accusing quite a few declarations of being ridiculously cliche.

During the CD, though I was not overcome by any intense emotion or epiphany whatsoever, my hands started shaking and my entire body was soon encompassed by this shakiness. I am not quite sure what that was all about.

Overall, I do not feel any different, though this was the first time I have used this CD, so I do not expect instant results. About a half an hour ago I experienced another anxious episode, and I really hope this tape will help, but I am only slightly optimistic.

I asked my therapist if I could listen to it while I work out, and she said yes. This is fantastic because I can motivate myself to listen to the tape, which will at the same time force me to exercise five times a week, and vice versa. Basically, killing two birds with one hand grenade.

Has anyone else used these affirmation/self help tapes? Have they worked at all?

Nerds, Snow, and Drugs

The end of this semester has been pretty busy. Though I don’t have to take any finals, I’ve had the FAFSA and CSS profile and a final college application to complete; however, it feels awesome to be done applying, and now my parents just have to update the FAFSA and CSS when we finally get our actual taxes done.

This last week has also been crazy stressful due to the Shore Bowl. My school’s Science League entered this year, and we practiced a lot this week in preparation. The event, which was on Saturday at Rutgers, was a buttload of fun and pretty interesting.

The adventure started off as any true adventure should, with a major setback or conflict. In our case, our adviser did not show up on time. He had accidentally overslept and his wake up call had not come to wake him up, which resulted in about an hour and a half of waiting on the school bus, worrying our butts off, before arriving at the Shore Bowl very late.

Our A team missed their first match, but they later thanked our adviser for being late because the team they would have gone up against turned out to be the winning team and slaughtered the competition. I was on the B team, which I attribute to the fact our adviser tried to split us up by strengths, and the only other AP Chem kid is my genius boyfriend who definitely should have been on the A team. I did mind quite a bit, but it didn’t matter in the end because both teams lost all of their matches. =D

It was fun to see that I actually knew some things. I let my little sister, who was the alternative for our team,  punch me in the face (not really) because she had a right answer and the rest of the team (mostly me) thought she was wrong. We ended up getting 0 points for that round. We had a ton of fun together though, and it was one of those rare days in which I was truly happy.

Plus I got a snazzy shirt, two awesome pins, and a Rutgers bag out of it. Considering all of the other schools were academies, two of which specialized in oceanographic studies, we did pretty good.

Flash forward to today, and it’s snowing AGAIN. I’ve accepted the fact I will never get out of high school (really they’ll just take off from our spring vacation). Not that I cared because I wouldn’t have had to go in anyway, but this means I can’t go to my friends house today.

Finally, I’ve been thinking about the prospect of antidepressants a lot more lately. Nowadays I literally hate everything and everyone, and I can only see all of the bad in the universe. To me, the world is a terrible place and nothing seems to change that image. Furthermore, this view of the world decreases my motivation, because, honestly, what’s the point? There is so much in the world I will never be able to experience-I only have a small sliver of time in the vastness of the universe and will only be able to witness things from my limited point of view.

Then I hate myself for being so negative and am certain I need to isolate myself from my friends because I”m sure my negative nature is bringing them all down. I can’t stand to be around my family anymore, and often need to hide away from them because my anxiety level skyrockets around them. I’ve started to believe I am truly a bad person, and have spent a lot of time doing absolutely nothing productive.

When I make a mistake, it ruins the whole day. I was supposed to fill out a scholarship from which I was sure I would get some money, but because I emailed the wrong person about my recommendation, I started to hyperventilate and cry and hate myself. The rest of the night I locked myself in my bedroom and cried and triggered myself with Tumblr and sad songs. The pain of sadness is so familiar that, when given the chance, I seek it out rather than try to fight it. The time I had put into that scholarship, as well as the time my teacher had spent writing the recommendation, had been wasted.

The worst part about all of this is that I see how much I’m completely wasting my life being sad and unproductive, and that depresses me even more. My mom is really against antidepressants-I think they scare her-but my therapist has promised small doses.

So why haven’t I considered antidepressants an option until now? I’m not scared of side effects or getting addicted. I really just don’t like the idea of messing with my mind. Because depression is a disease of the mind, I feel like it’s almost a part of me;  depression, to an extent, is who I am. By using antidepressants I will be suppressing or at least regulating an immense portion of my being. I’m not sure if this is making any sense or going anywhere, but that’s how I feel.

I’ve begun to accept the idea of antidepressants being like any other medicine which helps to cure a disease.  Sometime before my next appointment I have to bring the subject up to my parents (or at least my mom). I’ve discussed it already with my friends, and two of them support my decision. The third is a bit frightened by antidepressants, but states if they can help me then it’s okay.