Getting out of bed is hard, y’all. This morning I woke up around 8 am and it took three hours of debating to decide get out of bed. How’d I do it? I really wanted a cigarette. That’s how I did it. I’m not magic.
One thing about depression is that it turns my brain into a negative Nancy. Everything sucks when I am depressed. However, I’ve spent most of the last four years being really positive. My brain tells me that everything sucks, and somehow I have programmed a warrior princess in my brain to say, “HAHA! Flowers don’t suck! Dancing doesn’t suck! Let’s go over all the awesome things we’re looking forward to!” And then my depression rolls her eyes and tries to rain on everything while my warrior princess lists all of the things I’m grateful for on a never-ending loop. When my warrior princess starts getting tired, she forces me to look at the notes I’ve written myself for this very occasion. “Hey sim, I know you think everything sucks right now, but here are some things I know about you: you love your job, you love your family, you love your hair and you love it when people compliment your hair and that is not something to be ashamed of.” And then I smile, and then my negative Nancy is like, “yo girl, your hair sucks today.”
I’ve gone over this before, but what’s the only rule I follow when I am depressed? Show up. When I get my body where it needs to be, I am less able to come up with reasons why I am a terrible person. It really helps that negative self-talk. And goodness, that negative self-talk is having a field day in my head right now. It’s telling me not to go to work. It’s telling me that I am not valued there and they would love to fire me so I should totally not go in today so that they can fire me without feeling bad. Somehow I know that’s all bullshit, and I’m going to show up to work today.
The reason it took me so long to get out of bed is because I didn’t need to be anywhere until I needed to leave for work. This is something I have just realized: I’ll show up alright, but that’s all I’m going to do. I’m not going to respond to emails, I’m not going to work on my book, I’m not going to do my laundry, I’m not even going to take a shower. It’s hard for me to set new boundaries for my depression while I am depressed, so once I am not depressed I’m going to try to set it up so that showing up includes the things I am not obligated to do.
Ugh, that sounds so hard I’m not even going to think about it yet. I’ll just try to remember later. This morning, as I was texting jonny about my inability to get out of bed, he reminded me what a blessing it is that my life is good right now. Thinking about how good my life is tends to make me feel really shitty for being depressed, but it’s still a good thing to acknowledge. I’m so grateful that I have a job to show up to, I am so grateful that my wedding is in 80-something days. I’m so grateful that when I am in bed for hours on end, my dog and my cat come to see what’s up with me and they stay there with me, patiently cuddling, until I am ready to face my day.
I am depressed, and it feels shitty, but the people in my life who love me help to propel me forward so that I can move through this undertow with as little stress and shittiness as possible. And I’m feeling a little better right now. I’m feeling like I can do this day today. And today is all I need to think about right now.