Been a while since I’ve posted and I have no excuse. Not much excitement in my life, kinda blah. Not in an emotionally negative kind of way, just not much happening in my life to be writing about. So I was thinking about love today. Not just romantic love, but the sweetness that is good friendship. Something that I think that is even harder to find.
I was reminded of how nice it is to have this sweetness today. A coworker said she wanted to skip today, due to “lack of interest.” Each of us is a beautiful individual deserving of love. And perhaps that love will come in the form of good friendships with others. My good friend passed out boxes of chocolates to our lovely little group of coworkers and that sweetness shown through. Couldn’t ask for anything more today.
Perhaps we expect too much of certain days, or feel we will only be complete with a romantic relationship. I choose to set aside those expectations for at least today, and enjoy the sweetness of good friendship.
I think it is impossible to not be influenced by others when it comes to your mood. Being around positive people is in itself uplifting, being around those who are down can bring you down. It’s important to be strong enough in yourself that you aren’t completely thrown off-balance by someone else’s influence. But again, it is easy to allow intimate relationships to influence how you feel. So if you are in a bad, or even mediocre relationship, it will impact your depression. I was in one of those for a time, and it definitely affected me in a negative manner. But where is the risk if you have the opportunity to have a good relationship, built on equality and mutual understanding? Just something to think about.
Hard to believe that I started blogging a little over a year ago. Looking back, I’ve covered a lot of territory. The question is, am I learning anything, and am I applying it to my life? I hope so, but its hard work.
My therapist is insistent that I really need to work on being more social. Being on the internet doesn’t count! This has been difficult for me. She laughs because just about all my friends are nurses. How else would I know people except through work? Even so, I find that I have a hard time reaching out to others. It’s soooo much easier to veg at home by myself on the weekend. Again I ask, why do I have to be the one reaching out to others? I feel like sometimes someone should reach out to me!
Anyways, it has been a long year of blogging. I have learned much about writing for others and myself. It takes time and thoughtfulness to write something meaningful. I don’t know if it has been helpful to anyone else, but it has been helpful for me. I could never write a journal for myself, but this has come to me somewhat easier. Hopefully even as my depression may improve, I’ll still be able to write about significant topics.
Amazing that I am surrounded by people and feel so alone sometimes. Just not feeling connected, particularly after ending a long-term relationship about six months ago. I know the relationship wasn’t good for me, and I was lonely in the relationship, but I still miss that human touch. Probably more than anything else.
So, what is one to do? I am supposed to be more social, spend time with friends, etc. I just feel like someone should call me once in a while and see how I’m doing for a change. Only fair in a friendship, right? It is really hard to push myself to call friends.
Trust is a big issue for me. I have thought about it more frequently as I commute on the interstate back and forth to work. Being on the highway is trusting in a lot of strangers all at the same time. Trusting that they will maintain their speed, stay in their lane or signal to change, basically trusting that everyone will follow the rules of the road so we all remain safe.
There doesn’t seem to be a rule book for relationships to keep one safe. So trust is a big issue, at least for me. Reflecting on previous relationships, sometimes it did feel as if the other person was driving erratically, forgetting to use turn signals and stopping abruptly. We may have been on the same road, but not necessarily in agreement on how to get where we were going. And of course each of us wants to be just one more car ahead, so we push farther, exceeding the speed limit to be the leader. Throw all caution to the wind, this relationship is on the freeway of love!
However, love is not enough to sustain. Trust involves deeper feelings of consideration, compatibility, and honesty. Each car should be well maintained per se, to function well in relation to others. Lack of maintenance is a sure recipe for disaster. I think we have to work on ourselves and our relationship to build the feelings that lead to trust.
I think my metaphor is a little stretched and worn, but you get my point. Trust is an issue everyday, in many ways.
Why after almost 16 years do I still have some anxiety over seeing and dealing with my ex-husband? I don’t normally have contact with him at all since he moved to Alaska (I know, who the heck moves to Alaska??? But what a blessing!) but he has graced us with his presence for our son’s graduation ceremony. I feel very fortunate that he did move so far away, because we had a very contentious relationship and ongoing battle over custody and parenting. Let me just sum it up for now: it wasn’t pretty, and it wasn’t in our child’s best interest, but I did what I felt I needed to do to protect and nurture him.
Anyway, I imagine part of the anxiety is for my son. His relationship with his father is strained since dad moved away. My son had some say in where he lived when his dad decided to move, and he preferred to stay in Ohio, close to family and friends. His dad didn’t handle this well, and hasn’t managed to stay in close touch. He hasn’t seen him for about a year, and now he comes into town just for the graduation ceremony and is leaving tomorrow. Like my son said, it’s almost as if he just feels obligated. I mean who spends twelve hours flying just to turn around and go back in a day?
There has been a lot of acrimony and hurt between us too. At least that is how I feel. Our failed marriage was the result of his infidelity during my first episode of Depression (how’s that for a kick in the teeth?). He subsequently married the woman that he had the affair with, and had another family. Because of the depression, I found it an extremely painful time of my life, and he is still associated with that pain. I have grieved the loss of the relationship after all this time, but the darkness and despair of that episode of Depression still scares the heck out of me. And I associate him with being abandoned at my time of greatest need. Perhaps that is the source of my anxiety, I just never thought of it that way before. Writing is therapeutic too.
So, wish me luck as I put on my game face and do my best to confront my anxiety/my ex. It does get easier over time as my son gets older, and as I become more self-aware. At least it’s only for a day.
Hard to believe, but I am the parent of a high school graduate. My son’s last day of school was today, and commencement is next Wednesday. There were many rough times and moments I wondered how we would reach this day, but here we are! And I am so grateful for all that we have survived and learned about ourselves and each other along the way.
My son has also suffered from Depression. Without going into too much detail, a combination of family issues, living situation and school struggles ganged up on him and he was in a very bad way. Had to be hospitalized. Very frightening time for both of us but with therapy and medication he has made an excellent recovery, in fact, he has even been able to get off medication and do well. He still has teenage moodiness (don’t they all?) but is pretty even-tempered for the most part. And he has accomplished so much recently that he can be proud of; he will be going off to art college in the fall having earned many scholarships for his talent and hard work.
I am blessed to celebrate this milestone with him. My first episode of Depression hit when he was just a toddler. And I have struggled off and on since then. But I have always, always, made it a priority to be a good parent to him. Many days I was dragging myself around and going through the motions just to get through the day when I was at my worst. But I think that was at a minimum. I was still able to meet others needs while depressed, just not my own. Someday he will realize what a challenge it is to parent.
But for now we are just going to celebrate his success and his limitless future.