Sunday, February 20, 2011

Pit of Despair

Remember that scene in The Princess Bride where the hero wakes up in a dungeon and this creepy albino ogre tells him, "You are in the Pit of Despair.  Don't even think about being able to get out of here."  That line kept coming to me this past week.  Grimm as that sounds, it would actually bring a smile to my face.  It's kind of a funny scene and the parallel of being trapped in a dungeon and my life is so absurd. 

I got a lot of PM's and phone calls from friends this week who were concerned and also wanted to let me know that they too have had bouts with Depression.  One friend told me I was brave for sharing about it.  I don't know that I'm brave so much as shameless.  Plus, I knew that there would be lots of people who would tell me that they have been there before and so I felt a little less alone in this boat. 

If one has cancer or diabetes or any other disease, one does not feel the need to hide it.  There is no shame in these diseases.  But with Depression there is.  Here's why:  Depressed people sound like spoiled brat ass holes.

Waaagh!  I just had a beautiful healthy baby and I want nothing more than to disappear from the face of the earth.

Waaagh!  I have a happy marriage, healthy children, no worries and tons of people who love me and I want to run away from them all.

What a bunch of jerks!  Crazy jerks.  Let's face it, when you are in the throws of it you feel crazy because you see how irrational and unbalanced this is.  No one wants to wave their crazy flag.  So one keeps it a secret.

I kept having really good mornings this week and I would think that maybe I was wrong or that the B12 was kickin' in.  Around lunch time I would start to unravel though.  Friday the kids were home from school.  Drew had declared it a "No Trouble Day."  I love when he chooses to do this.  No Trouble Days are when he works very hard to not get in trouble.  He does what he's asked the first time and his manners are gorgeous.  (In a way it ticks me off because it only shows me just how capable he is of being so good.)  So with everyone working hard to behave and have good attitudes we had a lovely morning.  We needed to go to the store to get a birthday gift for a little friends party that afternoon.  The kids moved too slow for my liking and I had no patience for it.  It's like a stick of dynamite with a very short wick.  I could feel the flame racing to the gun powder in just seconds.  I tried really hard to not unleash it on the boys but eventually I'm snapping at them and herding them into the car. 

In the car I tried to tune them out with music.  By the time we got to the store I felt more under control.  We headed into the store and right as we walked in the door Gabriel realized that he did not have his wallet.  He left it in the car.  I'm sure steam was pouring out of my ears.  Through clenched teeth I told him we would go back and get it.  At the car, he can't manage to open the door.  At this point I'm boiling inside.  I went around and opened the door for him.  Gabe got his wallet and I waited, for what seemed to me a painfully long time, while he put his wallet in his pocket.  Then I had him open and close the car door three times.

"See?  Is that so hard?"  I snapped. 

Poop.  Gabriel, always the people pleaser, looked crushed.

"I'm sorry buddy.  Mommy is not feeling well.  Forgive me?"  And of course he did.

We found the gift and the boys pulled their money together to buy themselves a video game they had been wanting for a long time. 

At home they played their new game in the basement and I stayed up stairs trying to soothe my spirit with hot tea.  I also looked up the directions to the party venue.  When it was party time I again waited 2000 years for my sons to find their shoes, to put them on, to get out the door and get into the car.  Regardless of my preparations for getting there I still got lost.  Map Quest put me in the middle of a subdivision when I was supposed to be at a rec center.  I called Caren who talked me in.  I was not feeling angry but very alone and displaced.  It took the rest of the party for me to pull it together.  I could not wait to leave.  I just wanted to go home.  The party was until 5:30 so I knew Aaron would be there when we got home. I could not wait to just fall into his arms and let him take over with the kids (and dinner maybe?)

However, when we pulled into the driveway it was evident that Aaron was not home.  There were no comforting arms to greet me and no dinner (that the kids were already asking for) on the stove.  Quick as a flash I was mad again.  I called one of his two cell phones (which he did not answer) so I called the other one (which he also did not answer.)

"What's for dinner mom?"

Don't take it out on them....don't take it out on them....

And then Aaron walked in the door.

"I called you."

"I know, but I was..."

"I called both phones and you didn't answer."

"I know, but I was just turning onto our street."

"Where have you been?  Why weren't you home?"

"I knew you guys had the party so I went out for a beer with some co-workers.  Are you OK?  You gonna make it?"  Aaron was talking to me slow and careful like.  It was embarrassing and condescending.

"I will make it.  I'm mad because I had it in my head that you would be here when we got home.  I had this idea of how my evening was going to go and you ruined it.  And I know that's not fair.  You never go out with co-workers, you knew we would not be here, you couldn't read my mind seeing as how you were so far away and not a mind reader.  Ug!  Baby, I hate this!"

"It's alright.  Tell me what happened." 

So I told him how the day had gone and how I really thought this morning that I was pulling out of it.

"All right.  You will," and I finally got what I had been waiting for all afternoon.  I laid my head into his chest and he held me.

"Why is mom crying?"  Drew asked.

"I don't feel good buddy.  Sorry."

"What's for dinner?"


Saturday was good.  I was annoyed and bored with the fact that I had laundry to do and the house to tend to.  Saturday is no different then Thursday.  My job does not change much.  Aaron came home Friday and told me he was getting a bonus.  It sort of pissed me off.  He gets recognized and has goals.  My sister reminded me of the many goals I met: breast feeding for a year, potty training, the kids starting school.

"Their milestones are your met goals.  Not to mention you are still married and to a man that you've been with since you were 15.  You need to re-think what success is."  Well said, Sissy.

To mix it up a little I decided to paint.  I painted a picture for a friend that recently got married.  Caren and her daughter stopped by and I gave her daughter some canvas and we painted together.  Drew wanted to paint too and so I had my kitchen full of easels and budding artists.  It was a delicious little moment.  We capped the night off by all going to a hibachi grill together. (Drew was mesmerized!  Fire, knives, exotic foods...he was in his element.)

It was a good day.  One good day.  It felt good though.  Felt like I may be climbing out of the Pit of Despair after all.

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