I have been in alot of therapy over the years. Some terms are with me by memory now; closure, processing, realizing, and "acting as if." Or in other words: fake it til you make it.
My daughters both left home at age sixteen along with most of my good linen, good dishes and good intentions. The empty nest came far sooner than I ever expected and the visits home grew to be less and less. I miss the holidays where Barbie and Ken were the nativity couple with a playdough infant in the plastic saucecup manger and the heralding G.I. Jane and Joe brought tidings.
Depression at this time of year settles over me almost literally like someone has dropped a wet wool blanket on my person from somewhere sunny above me. I have S.A.D. on top of major depression and complicated ptsd and several phobias.
Medication is key but this last fall I got caught up in the black spot on the white wall and decided to change a med that worked but caused peprspiration. Down I went like a historical ship and life activites became exhausting. I spent twelve hours a day in bed and had to push to get the slightest task done. I who would normally be the one to silently scoff at someone who couldn't rise shine and fake it or meet a deadline, who could not punch a clock if it punched them first. Now I was the bedridden slave of fatigue for no reason, the hapless hack of hypochondria- after all there is nothing visibly wrong with my mirror image.
I got back on medication that works - different but effective, vowed not to change it again if it meant weaning off one to get to another and having a drastic lull in between.
Before the med fully activated I dragged myself out to the shed to drag my Christmas stash of decorations in. I didn't want to put them up I thought: what's the use, no one will see them but me. Ah - but I will see them. Seeing last years finery perked me up and reminded me of better times behind me and certainly hinted of better to come ahead. I wound up the musical Santa Claus figurine and listened to the carol tinkle merrily as I placed flickering and stable lights on the tree, mostly color... some solid and some in motion. I also put out white lights that looked like tiny stars on a dark night.
"Depression feeds on inactivity," someone told me once. Its true. And while the accompanying fatigue still robs me of some actions I would like to take, I am cheered up since the initial tumble down the unmedicated well of sadness.
Maybe I will host a "Blue Christmas," party this year for other loners. After all... misery shared is halved. The blackest night holds the prettiest stars.
Happy Non-Denominational Festival Occasion everyone!
A Moodscope member.
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