I have experienced depression severely twice in my life, once when I was 20 and now. I don't remember how I got over it when I was 20. I do remember lying curled in the fetal position and sobbing, unable to grasp the enormity of the universe and infinity which I won't get into or I'll freak out again but I know I climbed out of that hole eventually.
This time feels different I think, I'm not sure. Before there was some relief from being with family, with others. This time there's no lasting relief besides maybe falling asleep if I take a sleeping pill. I feel completely disconnected and isolated from everything that brought me joy a mere few weeks ago.
There has been a lot of change lately. My dad moved 10 minutes away from me, my brother is moving into our childhood home, my boyfriend's daughter moved to Columbus and now he, her mom and her are all settled there after months of knowing this was going to happen. I miss his apartment in Cleveland, and the routines we had there. I miss our bubble where he honestly didn't feel like a dad because he had to go to California to be a dad. When his daughter came here I was beside myself with excitement, delighting in creating special experiences that I hoped she'd cherish as she grew.
Now I feel freaked out. There's a constant burning sensation in my chest. I have no appetite and have lost 6 pounds in a week. Being around people often makes me feel like I have to go panic, and I have quite a bit. Am I in the right place? Will these new routines ever feel normal? Am I maybe not cut out to date a single parent now that he's fully engaged as being a parent?
I have positively bombarded everyone with my feelings. Yesterday I cried in public and a barista hugged me. The advice is the same. Do not make decisions right now. Stop searching for a solution. Ride out these bad feelings. This won't last forever.
BUT IT FEELS LIKE IT WILL. Aaron has been endlessly supportive and understanding, even noting that maybe this isn't what I signed up for and possibly I need more out of a partner. But I've always said I didn't want kids or marriage and I have lived my life accordingly. The idea that possibly for the last 30 years I haven't been setting up the life I want to live is terrifying. But I don't even know that I want any of those things! I'm afraid I will wake up one day and feel lonely if I don't have them however. But you don't typically throw away what usually makes you happy because you may suddenly change your mind.
Something about having a kid in the mix, not a toddler but a walking, talking human with big thoughts and ideas and changes in her own little life has woken up something inside me again. That awareness of time passing and a fear of regret. I have invested so much love, time and emotion into this family that I'm a part of and what if that was a mistake? What if I have to walk out on all of them? That idea is abhorrent to me. My system immediately recoils. Life without Aaron? It's the only thing that feels more pointless than how everything feels to me right now.
I am trying to go through the motions, talking to my therapist, being with people, but it's tough. The things I enjoyed aren't soothing me. I can't really read or watch anything to zone out. Exercise is hard because I am weak with hunger even though I'm forcing myself to eat. I keep telling myself STOP SEARCHING FOR A SOLUTION because I don't want to make the wrong choices, but I'm proactive and it feels impossible. My therapist suggested I journal so I am.
I see a light at the end of the tunnel in all the people who have reached out and been there for me in spite of how disconnected and detached I am. I know I'm not alone even though I feel terribly alone and isolated. It will get better. But in the meantime HOLY SHIT I JUST WANT THIS TO BE OVER UGGGGHHHHHHH. Looking into short term anxiety medication, and I really hope it helps. Because this is the worst. I just want to feel like a person again.