“I almost had my own show in Japan.”

Content warning:  suicidal ideation.

Message in a bottle.

I have a confession.  Every time I read or hear about humans behaving abominably toward other humans, I think about suicide.  Last year, I thought about it almost nonstop.  It was distracting, annoying, and a little scary.

I think I’m supposed to feel ashamed of this, but I don’t.  It just is.  I’m capable of being as cold as space and utterly indifferent.  I trained myself to reject those feelings.  Now it’s habitual.

I could change this internal thought process by forming a new habit, but I choose not to do so.  I don’t want to live as an unfeeling, unattached, and unaffected entity.  We have computers for that.

This is one of the few instances where I regret being too intense.  That’s not quite what I mean…  (I was going to say unbalanced, but it failed the rudeness test ((and made me giggle.)))

Sometimes I wish I could attach an attenuator to my brain.  I’ve thought too many steps ahead, and now I’m more interested in pursuing the new thread.  This is precisely why I’m such an airhead.  I do this constantly.

I can’t complain about being an airhead because it’s the most potent tool in my survival kit.  If I couldn’t distract myself, I wouldn’t still be kicking it.  I’m just far too good at it.  It makes it difficult to communicate with others.

I’ve always journaled since a child.  It’s how I talked to my mom about things more complicated than nodding and head shaking could dispatch.  I began using a typewriter when I was six because writing longhand is (still) difficult for me.

When I don’t blog I go silent.  It’s usually not immediate, but when I don’t have my computer to help me express my thoughts, I gradually stop sharing them because it takes too much effort to mostly fail at saying what I mean.

The longer it goes on, the harder it is to start talking again.  Deep down I’m always terrified I’ll lose the ability to speak permanently.  It’s kinda twisted how the more I fear, the longer it takes to reclaim the skill.   I have to convince myself to stop being afraid of that scenario before my voice returns.  (It’s rocket science when you’re exasperated.)

When I let go of the world outside my head, it’s dangerous for my lifespan.  I overanalyze to death, literally.  It’s not logical for me to exist, and I’m a surprisingly good extemporaneous speaker.  (Even when it’s just in my head.)  It wouldn’t take long to recognize I’m insignificant in any mid to large sized picture.  Then weigh it against the price I pay to participate, and conclude it’s not worth it.

(Fortunately?)  I discovered I have a new tool in my arsenal.  It’s a song by Evanescence called, Imperfection.  When Amy Lee sings, don’t you dare surrender, she sings it like she means it.  She put feeling in it like Beyoncè.

Now, when I remember 45 is still faking it, that sound byte plays in my mind.  It’s an incredibly powerful rebuke.  Startling, even.  I’m a little bit freaked out by how well it works.  But more pleased to have a new empowering tool.  Music is powerful.  (Use it responsibly.)

secret door

Oh shit, you were probably expecting a point.  It’s this:  Feeling all the feels takes incredible strength and courage because it’s not always fun or even tolerable.  Lying and pretending you don’t feel things intensely is weak sauce.

We all have survival strategies we use to function in society.  I’m just confessing my own in case someone thinks they’re the only one who has similar experiences internally.  I have a tough time trusting people (over age 21) who have never contemplated suicide.  (They smell too much like a liar.)  I’m off to beat my drums with sticks.

“Elaine, do you think I would go willy-nilly into a situation so obviously fraught with potential complications?”

The Depression Monster is sitting on my head.  I’m ignoring him out of spite.  It makes me feel powerful (because I’m winning.)  Unfortunately, I’m still moving slowly and taking (really) long pauses to overthink.  It’s messing up my schedule.  I also got an invoice from the legal office negotiating the partnership at work.  I cried a little (because it’s fair despite feeling like robbery.)

I was raised by Great Depression-era parents in the 80’s.  (Everything about money makes me anxious.)  It’s irrational because they also taught me to be generous which means I’ll likely never suffer from lack of resources to survive.  I’m still fascinated by how well it works.  All the religions I know of teach it.  Giving things to other people is painless for me, but it’s been tainted by suggestions I’ve been taken advantage of a few times by relatives.

I’ve learned being used is bearable.  It can change the dynamics of a relationship, though.  So there is sometimes loss involved, but it’s subtle.   Some political news penetrated my defenses and set off this round, I’m guessing.  I really hate having to shield myself from reality in any way.  It makes me feel like a child.  I do it anyway because it’s necessary for me to survive.

I’m stronger now that I know about Stevie Nicks.  She’s a wise guide who is open, honest, and hella famous.  It’s as if she knew all along part of her journey was to help others.  When you study her interviews, it’s clear even from when she first became famous, she’s cognizant of her influence.  She probably knew she would be famous long before it happened.  I’m guessing her mom talked to her at some point about this aspect of fame.  It’s entirely something my mom would have done.

My anti-depression toolkit is super useful, now.  I’ve been teaching M. how to have fun.  He thought playing is just for children.  Now he knows play evolves as we age, but should never be forsaken.  He’s making his first game for IOS.  He’s also coloring on a daily basis.  It’s breaking his addiction to TV, (which is good because I canceled all channels except Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.)

I watched the first episode of Atypical.  I recognize I’m not its target audience.  It’s a show for neurotypical people to better understand autistics.  Therefore, it’s speaking in their language.  I still enjoyed it.  I’m pleased the show exists.  When they use FX to demonstrate how it feels to be the autistic main character, it’s jarring and nearly unbearable to me.  I walked away and came back when that part was over.  I recognize the actors playing the parents, but everyone else is new to me.

My immediate thought was to wonder why the hell the lead actor wasn’t masking.  It’s uncomfortable to watch.  It feels like watching someone walk on a highwire with no net to me.  I cringe when I see him actually say or do the things I spend a lot of energy suppressing.  But again, it’s because the show is not only for entertainment, but it’s teaching.   Also, masking is a skill, and trial and error are how it’s acquired.  (It’s a cruel, mean school.)  He’s young and just discovering how masking can make life less painful.

We age and develop at different rates, and grow based on different experiences.  There will always be a broad spectrum of traits and behaviors associated with autism.  When I was in high school, I didn’t mask well and my energy and time management skills were non-existent.  The difference between then and now is shocking to non-autists.  This is why no one should put limits on our potential.  Especially not where we can come across or overhear them.  (That’s abuse.)  I’m off to beat my drums.

“That’s funny, George. You’re very quick. I feel like I don’t have to explain every little thing to you.”

The Depression Monster ambushed me in my sleep.  I got about an hour of rest first, so there’s that.  I just hate when he gets me at my most vulnerable.  My bullshit detector doesn’t work when I’m asleep.  (It barely works when I’m awake.)  I haven’t managed to find a way to avoid this sadistic slumber party, yet.  Aside from not sleeping, that is.

I wake myself up from weeping in my sleep when this happens.  Then my bullshit detector has to warm up.  It usually takes about an hour before I manage to talk me back from the ledge.  Humor is my most effective (and probably only) weapon against the Depression Monster when I’m half asleep.  It’s the one instance where being a smart ass with a twisted sense of humor has paid off.

He usually plays the race card first:

Depression Monster: You should just kill yourself. You know damn well it’s just a matter of time before a cop shoots you for existing while being black.  And autistic.  And mentally ill.  Um…  How are you still alive?

Half-asleep me: I knew it! This sucks!

DM: Even I have to admit it’s pretty messed up.

HM: But I don’t want to die.

DM: Everybody dies. It’s the only thing you can assume without putting your foot in your mouth, which is something you often do, I’ve noticed.

HM: Hey! I’m eleven days into creating a new habit to correct that. You’re mean.

DM: At least I’m honest.

HM: No, I don’t think that’s right…

DM: You think? Since when? I thought you medalled at First to Reply, not First to Edit. More like, reluctant to edit, right?

Me: I hate you.

DM: So?

M: When will you be dying?

DM: What do you suppose Stevie Nicks would think if she heard that evil question?

M: I don’t know… Shut-up.

DM: Make me.

M: I don’t make trash, I burn it. (Not really, I use city sanitation.)

DM: Rote!

M: You’re a figment. Fig Newton. Farfegnugen.

DM: Rude much?

M: Nope. I save it for you.

DM: I’m touched.

M: I know.

DM: You know… It’s too bad you’re not at least a man. At least then you’d have fewer people who hate you for existing. Also, you wouldn’t have needed a Ph.D. if you were born with a penis. It’s your paper penis.

M: (singing) Have I told you lately that I hate you?

DM: This is why all the hashtag gamers hated your guts. So much. You don’t even understand what funny means.

M: Remember figgy pudding? It was the rudest part of that song. So demanding. Fig.

DM: If someone says the n-word around you in any context, you cry. Every. Single. Time. I don’t think normal black people do.

M: Now I’m going to live just to spite you.

It drags on for a while, but I ended up laughing at myself, (after bawling a little.)  Once I’m fully awake, it doesn’t take long to shut him down.  It’s no wonder I get lost in the shower if I don’t follow my checklist diligently.  The only strategic hint I got out of today’s adventure:  Work on having fewer insecurities.  Sigh.

“She’s like an expensive car with one of those motion-sensor force field alarms.”

I’m still struggling to entirely free myself from the grip of the Depression Monster.  I’m doing better, thanks to our Stevie Nicks party.  When I think about what she’s taught me, it helps free me from my inner asshole.  I quit beating myself up for having depression and focus on forcing it back into remission.

I watched an interview on YouTube in which Stevie Nicks was royally pissed off.  I had to view it a few times to recognize she was angry, (this is one of my known bugs.)  When it clicked, I realized she gets pissed precisely the way I do.  We both talk a whole lot of shit to cover up how powerless and hurt we’re feeling.

I’m kinda glad there’s someone else on this planet who reacts this way besides me.  When I reach that point, I’m incredibly compelled to throw out unbelievable threats against whoever has me riled.  I know as it’s coming out of my mouth how ridiculous it sounds.  I just need to say it anyway.

As I age, I’ve improved slightly.  It’s been decades since I’ve threatened to hit someone with the Empire State Building.  It’s symbolic of my rage, not literal, (although, if I could, I might need a timeout to prevent it.)  To me, I’m merely stating exactly how pissed off I am.  Others usually choose to find it amusing, (which only makes me want to replace the Empire State Building with the moon.)

Before I acquired this um… Skill…  My only way of expressing rage was crying.  This is better.  Just so you know, the best way to react to someone losing it like this is to remain silent and avoid eye contact.  Perhaps no sudden movements, too.  Please, don’t laugh, it just makes it worse.

 

NVIDIA Titan Xp Star Wars Collector’s Edition

Tomorrow morning at 7AM PST, the pre-ordering begins.  Of course, there’s a dark side version as well.  It’s red instead of green.  I was in the process of researching my new gaming build, when this popped up and said, “Strong with the force, I am.”  Gamer’s who also prefer their machine to look like a brilliant, (damn near garish) alien artifact:  May the force be with you.  Always. 💜

I’m getting ready to watch comedians on Netflix.  Laughing until my face hurts is my way of going nuclear against the Depression Monster.  I keep it in reserve for this use.  I’m not pulling out my secret weapon just yet:  Wanda Sykes.  I do need to start watching Conan again, though.  He’s like America’s Prozac.  I love him.  Okay, I’m off to laugh like there’s a prize.

“No matter how depressed I get, I could always read the sports section.”

The Depression Monster got me.  It took all of the last night and most of today to take back control.  I feel like I just finished playing professional tag for three hours.  I’d kinda like to cry, but I’m too stingy with what little energy I have remaining.  At least my thoughts are slow for a change.  Time certainly seems to pass more quickly when I’m fighting a bout of depression.

I just wish it wasn’t because everything takes far longer to pull off in this state.  M. suggested we have a Stevie Nicks party this weekend to send the Depression Monster packing as quickly as possible.  I’m totally going to marry him.  I know I agreed already, and all that.  But this was precisely the moment I knew with all my heart he’s The One.

Geez, I’m grossing myself out.  Heh.  (Mostly because I mean it.)  I don’t know what this feeling is called, but it’s the same way I feel about four chapters into every book by Stephenie Meyer.  I always think to myself, “Dammit, she did it again!  She tricked me into reading a romance novel disguised as speculative fiction!”  (Please note, I’ve read everything she’s written, and will continue because I love her.)

I pay close attention to the way M. says things.  He’s never put his foot in his mouth that I’ve noticed.  He didn’t fall into the trap of suggesting a way to “get over my depression.”  Just a way of getting through this round more quickly.  With him.  This is two new things to consider.  Usually, I send him away when I get depressed.  He figured out how to invite himself to hang out.

Damn, he’s brilliant.  I’m sure there are several ways he could have accomplished this, but a Stevie Nicks party is a home run.  Or maybe a touchdown.  Whichever one is better.  I’d be printing out Stevie Nicks quotes on pretty backgrounds and hanging them all over the place if I could get up.  Tomorrow,  I’ll gather some hardcover notebooks, my best pens, and my favorite blanket.

Then we’ll sit on the blanket in front of the TV and watch my ocean scenes Bluray, and write poetry.  (M. will probably write poems about surgery.)    Then a live concert DVD or three.  Yes, this will send the Depression Monster running in tears.  Perfect.  I love reading poetry written by people who insist they can’t write a poem.

They don’t know the rules, or what’s expected.  It frees their creativity.  Some people are naturally poetic.  I think of them as graceful minded.  I like being near people like this.  I’m probably hoping it’ll rub off on me.  I have a lot of faith in osmosis, apparently.  I’m off to read.  🙃