Joy lies in the fight, in the attempt, in the suffering involved, not in the victory itself


Wednesday, November 30, 2011


First I was bad. Then I was great. Now I'm just in limbo. And by that I don't mean the fun game played with a broomstick. I mean that awful nothing state, where the slightest push can send me rocketing either way. It's like being on the crest of a rollercoaster and knowing that the plummet to darkness is just a millimetre away. I feel like if I try hard enough I will be able to get the happy place back.

The three day Ignite Your Life course was amazing. It inspired me, and challenged me, and since then I've been feeling more positive and worthwhile and able to change. I've been less depressed, not at all suicidal and had more energy. Until... Until. Until. Until. There's always an "until" isn't there? Or an "and then/but then". I'm so grateful for the two and a half weeks of strength and sanity but WHY does it have to end? Monday morning dawned and my old friend lethargy was back, with apathy and self-loathing not far behind. Of course I could have, and should have, used the strategies I learned in the course to change my mental state and try to motivate myself... Instead I spent the next two days in bed feeling the old depression envelop me. I guess I felt comforted in some way, it's easier to slip back into old patterns than try to develop new ones, right?

I'm frustrated that I am not "cured".

I know that it's impossible, but I still kind of wanted it.

Even though I am the first to tell people you need to work hard at recovery and illness management, in the end I am a lazy SOB who wanted an easy way out.

The teachers I met at Ignite Your Life would say I'm using the mental illness, depression, suicide "game" to try and gain attention, connection with others, and self-worth. They're right, because while I definitely have mental illness, it's my choice how that illness manifests itself and how far I let it take hold of my life. I definitely had a choice Monday morning and I made the choice to remain trapped in the depression cycle.

All I can do now is try to switch my mental state and embrace happy, energising, positive thoughts. Which might be (IS!) tiring, but is certainly within my capabilities. I'll let you know how it goes :-D


Sairs said...

It does suck when you have felt great for a bit and then you feel the pull of too high or too low. I'm feeling really 'normal' for want of a better word lately and I keep waiting for the spark of mania or the lull of depression, you know what I mean. Sometimes it's just the way it goes and using skills you learnt is really really hard sometimes. Be gentle with yourself and I hope the depression doesn't hang around. Also don't forget to be kind to yourself, because you deserve it!

Pixie said...

I don't agree. I think you, and many others, work damn effing hard to make the most out of life. You always have, in my opinion. If you sink then that's not you. That is the nature of the beast. I'm not saying you should give in, but I am saying that it isn't your fault, not your doing. We all have days when we curl into ourselves. And why the hell not? It is bloody hard work from the minute you wake to the minute you sleep. I think we owe ourselves a bit of curling time every so often.

Perhaps this response is somewhat coloured by an interview I heard yesterday with a chap called Tim Cantopher. He has written a book called 'The Curse of the Strong'. I think the title probably says enough as it is. It made me think twice about underestimating the necessity to sit with the illness at times.

But they're just my thoughts and what do I know?

P x

Anonymous said...

Right on Pixie!!

Lil you have never come across to me as begging for attention via your mental illness. So they can go f themselves. :)

Catherine said...

Dear Lil,

I think all your thoughts and feelings are valid, even the depressed ones. This doesn't mean we shouldn't try to get out of them, but it also doesn't mean that they are your fault and that you have brought it on yourself.

To me that is people without mental illnesses response to something that scares them, it scares people to think something like an emotion can be so out of their control, so they act like it is fully in their control in order to cope.

Who would bring depression and pain onto themselves? Certainly not you. I think you are a strong person who is doing your best to deal with the hand you have been dealt.

I get what you are saying though that our choices affect the way we feel at times. I know there are choices we make that add to depression or detract, I'm just worried you are being too hard on yourself.

Sending lots of love and good wishes.


Saracide said...

Blogger ate my long, thoughtful comment. But let me just say I relate to how you're feeling and here's a *hug* :)

d'Artagnan said...

Hang in there! You are loved. Take care of yourself and show yourself compassion.