Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Promise

I'm cold and I can't even remember the last time I wrote anything worth reading and I can't remember the last time I felt like I had something to look forward to.

It's the season, it's the weather, it's the expectations I put on myself, it's my age, it's hormones, it's the moon, it's the tides, it's the depression, it's the anxiety.

Whatever. I'm tired of feeling this way. I KNOW it will pass, I know things will get better, I know I won't always have this crapfuzz going on in my head. I know I will enjoy things again. I know that there are people who are so much worse off than I am (and that only makes me sadder, more depressed, to contemplate the sorrows of humanity). I know this is a sort of brain-illness, I know the Buddha says that suffering is life, or is it vice versa? I know that the days will very soon start to become longer, I know that it will warm up, I know all of this and I know more even than all of this, and I have experienced it over and over in my life and I know that I wish I never had.

I had the boys again today and that was good because I can't fucking lose it when they are here. But Owen said I sounded "tired" and there is no doubt they can tell the difference in me when I am in this place and I hate it that depression affects not only me but my family, my friends. My grandchildren, for god's sake! I try so hard to be the grandmother they deserve- to play ball with Owen on the stairs, to take them outside to feed the goats and chickens and the mule, to explore in the bamboo jungle, to play games, to be cheerful and always mindful of the loving and right reaction and it's so hard when I feel this way. And I did all of those things today along with making sure they had food to eat and something to drink and jackets on and shoes kept up with and Gibson's diapers changed. But.

Everything is hard. And that exhausts me. It is better, I think though, to keep trying, or at least that's what I've always done, perhaps because I've had to, I don't know.
I do not know.

Here's what saved me today- Owen and Gibson. They wanted to put make-up on me and do my hair and I let them paint my entire face as dark blue as any woad-painted Celt. They touched me so gently, my face, and my hair that I felt as if angel wings were brushing me.

My friend Judy who came by. Judy is as prone to suffer visits from the black dog as I am and there is no need to try and pretend around her. She does not need me to be cheerful, she sits and we talk and she makes the boys laugh and that woman has been through hell and if she weren't a warrior, she would not be here and she does not make me feel like a fucking jerk for having the dark days and she can talk about her own without shame. We can talk about it but do not wallow, we laugh, we talk about other things, plenty of other things and when she left, my spirits had risen a bit. When she was getting ready to leave Owen said right out of the blue, "It's a big world out there. Be careful of monsters. If a monster gets you, you call me."

That little boy. My skinny little man who puts on the Rolling Stones and break dances for me. He twirls on his butt on the floor and holds on to the vanity in the hallway and kicks his legs and does 180 degree turns. He tells me that we are going to a party and that I look beautiful. Of course he also tells me I am old but I already knew that.

And then Mr. Moon came home and he played with those boys and there is nothing like watching that. Gibson has him so wrapped around his little finger that it's heartbreakingly beautiful. That tiny little man, leading his giant Boppy through the house to go play whatever Gibson wants to play. His grandfather changes his diaper and Gibson stands up on the bed and hugs him so hard, pats him on the back and says, "Game, Boppy?" And they walk to the Glen Den and play Wii swordfighting, the man and the little boys and it's all so damn precious and this is all so damn precious. Precious in the sense that it is priceless which was a better word before that stupid credit card advertising campaign.
And by god, I want to be able to laugh along with it. To not just witness it and cry because of this stupid fucked-up brain of mine.

I know all of the reasons not to be sad. I can list them until you nod off from boredom.
They help and they do not help. This is not a problem of circumstance, it is a problem of the brain and body. And I feel loathe to even write about it these days. I have written about it so many times and was chastised so recently and yet...this is my life. This is the way it is for me and by god, I am not going to pretend that all is well when it most decidedly is not.

It will pass. All things must pass.

All things must pass away. And I take heart in the fact that when that happens, when this particular bout of madness passes, I will write about how that feels too.

I promise.


  1. {{{{Mary}}}}
    I sent you a letter today. I hope it gets there soon.

  2. Rebecca- You just made the tear-wall break. Thank you. You fucking know. Far more than I. So thank you.

  3. In my experience, sadness is like happiness, it comes and it goes. I, too, am in a bit of a funk but today I made some things with my achy hands and I ate 26 pounds of chocolate and I almost feel like a human.
    Don't ever apologize for feeling blue because then you'd have to apologize for feeling yellow too.
    "Feelings, woah woah woah feelings...."

  4. It's okay to be sad. Anxiety sucks, and this is the season for it. I've had three panic attacks in two days and it isn't even Christmas yet. I give you full permission to feel everything and not to feel guilty for it. You know, your openness with your kids and grandkids counts for a lot--my mom suffers from depression and anxiety but has never once admitted it, probably not even to herself. And that secrecy--her denial of being sad or tired or anxious--made my sister and me feel like it was our fault.

    And Jesus, let's face it. It' beautiful and hard to be a human. Sometimes, it's just hard.


  5. I think part of being a grandmother could also mean walking around the house with rosary beads praying to die. That was my grandmother, and I loved her all the same -- I think all these things (those you hate and those you love) make you you and might be necessary to make you you. And it's YOU everyone loves.

  6. Oh, Mary. I understand you and you understand me and that makes it a little bot better.

  7. It's the pendulum swinging back and forth. And being cold does not help. I hate being cold.

  8. I am having panic attacks about christmas and tonight I teared up about it all. I'm so scared that things are going to be shitty, that I will make them shitty. It's a terrible cycle. I feel your pain.

  9. Forget that recent commenter. Shake of the guilt he or she tried to lay on you. Feel what you feel. Write about it till you don't feel it anymore. Write and write. I will be here. We all will. Loving you. Hugs, sweet woman. And I love what Elizabeth said about you being you.

  10. Oh my that Big Black Dog... He also knows my address. I will not give you words for you are self-wise. That is the best you can be. Your fire will be lit and you will smile in your sleep and it will warm your soul.Be patient.Peace to you;Mary in Florida.From Mary in Alabama.HUG...

  11. Love the term "crapfuzz." And it will pass. And it's ok for the boys to know sadness happens, and for them to cherish you. Cathy-in-Simi

  12. suffering visits from the black dog.
    He gets around way more than he should.

  13. In the words of the prophet Joni Mitchell, "Laughin' and cryin', you know it's the same release."

    (I quote that line all the time. Apologies if I have quoted it to you before.)

    The black dog is part of what makes up you and your life. I for one would never think to chastise you for expressing what's going on in your mind when the black dog is running around in your yard.

  14. Sweet Mary-there's a wee package headed your way from the NW-the black dog is here too. I got to dance it out in 'open floor', a dance workshop with my lovely dance friends. I stood and cried and moved and they witnessed and held me.

    Sometimes it helps for a while. Anxiety, depression, sorrow as wide as an ocean, will never be gone from my life. They are just there.

    XXXXXXX Beth

  15. Oh Mary, it is the seasons, the tides, the hormones.... it's life. It's not easy. I'm sorry the depression has hold of you. I'm feeling as flat and uninterested and uninteresting as I've ever felt. Crying might be an upgrade right now. I'm going to focus on the shortening of the nights and the lengthening of the days, like I always do this time of year and wait to come out the other side.

    What Owen said about monsters? It is a big world out there. How does he come up with these things? Thank goodness you have such fascinating and lovable people in your life.

    And please try not to feel loathe to write about it. This is your blog, your place and you are entitled to write whatever you choose. I'm thinking turning off anonymous comments might be an idea whose time has come....

    I know the rollercoaster ride will continue, and hope this dip is a short one. xo

  16. That's the thing about depression--the reasons not to be sad don't matter because your brain is misfiring. Depression isn't about anything rational. It's so irrational. It's not your fault, your brain is lying to you right now. I'm sure you know all this but I know from my own winter depression how easy it is to spiral down and your brain just tells you so many things that aren't true. Like someone else said, you are self-wise and I feel silly saying all this. I know that black dog and it always lumbers away eventually. I hope yours does soon. Much Love. You are loved.

  17. Just hold on in there. It'll pass. Always does. xxx

  18. Heartinhand- You are a funny lady. Thank you.

    Sara- Being a human IS sad AND beautiful. You are so right. And I hear you on the Mom thing. My mother's depression was horrible and yet, it was never ever discussed and yes, I always felt it was my fault. One thing I have done over and over is to tell my kids that my happiness IS NOT THEIR RESPONSIBILITY! It's my husband's. Haha! No. I tell him the same thing.

    Elizabeth- I love your grandmother, even though she finally got her wish and died, right? I can so relate. I just need some rosary beads. And you are right- I am who I am because of everything but I sure as shit wish sometimes that I was someone different.

    Birdie- I do understand and I feel your suffering.

    Ellen Abbott- I don't like it either. Being cold makes me hurt.

    SJ- Fact of the matter is, no one can buy anyone a present that truly says how we feel about them. It's all gravy. Why can't we believe that?
    I love you, girl.

    Angella- I know. I know that that anonymous commenter had no clue as to what he/she was saying. But when you're depressed- you believe ALL the shit. You know. Even if you don't really. Thank you. Always.

    Mary- Hello Mary in Alabama. Thank you for calling me self-wise. Sometimes I am, as all of us probably are after a certain age. It helps a little, I guess. I am trying to be patient. Hug back.

    Cathy-in-Simi- Thank you. And thank you for stopping by, for taking time to comment. My boys will love me, even if I'm not cheerful as I should be. I know. I just want to be the best MerMer I can be for them because- well, I love them. So much.

    Ms. Yo- He is legion, isn't he? That damn fucking bastard. I hate him for all of us.

    Steve Reed- I do love Joni. She was so wise. Thanks for the reminder. Thanks for the sweet words.

    Beth Coyote- I wonder why I (do you do this too?) think that we should be able to live without this crap. It is so obviously apparent that is never going to happen. We do what we can. I love that you dance and are held. I love you. I can't wait to get your package.

    Mel- We are so similar, you and I. Thank you for noting what Owen said. I felt it was so sweet and profound, too, although of course he was just quoting something he'd heard on TV, most likely. Still. There be monsters out there in this big world. We have to hold each other, don't we?

    Ms. Vesuvius- Yes, I know that lying bastard but what a convincing liar he is! Thank you so much for your words today and for all of them you leave here. I appreciate you more than you can know.

    Jo- So far! Thanks, sugar.

    Jill- Seriously.

  19. I know the feeling and hope not to go there anytime soon. The boat trip this week was a cure for whatever sadness I felt. And the four black dogs here send you their best wishes. They are good dogs.


Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.