I knew what needed done, but I didn’t know how to start any of it.
Laundry and clutter and dishes and library books and kindergarten homework and first grade homework and unpacking from the vacation that ended two weeks ago.
I sat in the middle of it all, flat affect, with nothing to say and no ability to think.
(This is what my depression looks like, only I never really recognize it in the moment. I simply feel irrationally and unreasonably overwhelmed.)
Some investigation by the people who know me well revealed an important puzzle piece: I had stopped taking one of my medications.
The one that supports mental clarity and capacity in the face of depression.
I remember when it happened, actually. The prescription ran out, I meant to fill it that day, then I forgot, and when I remembered again, the task of calling in the refill very nearly overwhelmed me.
It’s an odd irony. I was overwhelmed to call in my prescription because I was out of the prescription that keeps me from feeling overwhelmed.
(Which came first, the chicken or the egg?)
I can perhaps predict what you’re thinking: how irresponsible this is, how important it is to stay current and stocked with ongoing medications, how I need to put on my own oxygen mask first, how dangerous it is to go ‘cold turkey’ without the knowledge and approval of doctors and therapists and all parties involved.
I know. I really do. I know.
It’s a whole lot of work to take care of me sometimes. The presciption simply fell off my list of things to do. And then I fell off my own radar.
Prescription: hereby filled and in my system for two days now. I still haven’t unpacked, but that’s just because I don’t want to bother with it, not because I don’t know how to put things away.
My children went to school with packed lunches and complete homework, and I came home and did the dishes and cleaned the fish bowl before I sat down to write four chapters.
Better living through chemistry. It’s a good thing.