You got a problem with paba?

The Depression Monster is kicking my ass.  I’m doing surprisingly well, despite.  Well, in that I’m too numb for it to touch my spirit.  The buffer has always existed, but it’s only recently occurred why.  I’m delighted by this new insight.  I’ve decided to accept it without analyzing it (to death.)  My understanding is enough.  How rare.  But I don’t dare linger here.  The brain zaps from Prozac withdrawal are happening every few moments, now.  It feels a lot like being excessively high on cannabis.  It’s almost out of me forever.  Yay.

I’m glad I went on the marijuana tour last year, or this would probably freak me out.  (Okay, definitely.)  I was awed by the amount of weed I was able to consume without consequences during the tour.  I watched the younger tourists consume far more simultaneously, also without repercussion.  It had the intended effect of eliminating rote fears.  Something about cannabis works the same way Prozac does on my brain.  Does this mean I’m going to replace Prozac with pot?  Nope.   😂  Fuck drugs.

While I had no compunction with legally consuming in the past, I’ve grown since.  People who were off my radar then are now present in my world, and their influence is intense.  I could legally smoke a joint in front of both Michelle Obama and Lisa Bloom (my imaginary personal life coaches) without feeling like I was hovering over a pit of doom.  I couldn’t do it in front of  Stevie Nicks, though.  I can’t even do it knowing Stevie Nicks exists.  So here we are.  Post pot life.  I’m glad I experimented, but fuck feeling like I’m hovering over a pit of doom just to get high.

It’s not even ironic.  Stevie Nicks specifically said to avoid cocaine, bourbon, and weed because she used the hell out of them, and it almost killed her.  She added Klonopin to the list of never do’s, too, stating it was the worst of them.  Through watching her documentary DVD’s and the interviews on YouTube, I learned of this dark chapter of her story.  It made me grieve for what she endured.  (That’s the only part that didn’t surprise me.  😂)   Do as I learned, not as I did before learning.  That’s fucking powerful.  I’m amazed by this turn of events, but not upset.

I’m pretty confident I was born high enough.  I don’t need mood altering substances to tease reality.  I can just read a Stephen King novel.  Or Clive Barker, who is rapidly gaining my loyalty as a reader.  I abandoned Tess of d’Ubervilles by Thomas Hardy quickly, and read Duma Key by Stephen King, instead.  If you’re an artist, read Duma Key.  You’re welcome.  (It’s an excellent story, regardless.)  I’m done reading fiction that centers on women as victims.  I’m basically abstaining from the Lifetime Channel variety of novels forever.  ‘Cuz holy shit.  It’s like forced empathy training for sociopaths, (as if that would work.)

What?  Your novel is about a woman who got raped?  (Visualize me running away, screaming “Fuck!”)  I don’t even watch TV anymore.  I have four TV’s, two of which are newer 4k LG’s with HDR.  I’m going to give away the other two.  The new ones are still useful for movies and video games.  And to watch Will and Grace when it starts, of course.  My other show, Better Things, I buy to stream via Amazon.  I’m going to give away my Fire TV, too, since I just realized I haven’t used it since I set it up a year ago.  Oops.  Roku made it redundant.  I haven’t even looked at the Apple 4k whatever.  I’m good.

I need to give away my excess computers, too.  My house AI can stay once I adjust her, but all the single card computers can go.  I don’t need to know the humidity level of my bedroom while I’m  sleeping, for starters.  I regret I’ve crossed the line between smart home and smart ass home.  Sigh.  I thought I would love it, but it turns out I find it incredibly annoying between the hours of 2 and 4 AM.  Even Wanda Sykes couldn’t make me laugh during that time…  On second thought, she probably could.  😂  But until she shows up to try, I’ll be sleeping during those hours.  I’m off to debug de-feature.

…No soft cheese of any kind.

I got triggered.  I don’t know what caused it, but I’m not in the mood to linger on it.  I’m super tired from not sleeping well (in a strange place.)  I’m debating about going to Denver to ride this out.  I’m trying not to let myself give in to the urge to be Negative Nancy.  I know it’s one of The Depression Monster’s automatic weapons, so giving in means letting that bastard win.  Not happening.  I’m off work this week, but I think I’d be better off skipping a nap and sleeping well tonight.  Swimming will probably help.

I’m starting to realize what will get me to finally move to Denver;  Issues with the VA hospital here.  For some reason, getting decent care is iffy for me at the VA here.  From my perspective, it seems as if it merely depends on the mood of whomever I see.  Of course, I suspect racism whenever a caregiver mistreats me.  I scrutinize a list of possible reasons, but it almost always results in cause unknown.  Racism is easiest to detect based on experience, but it’s rarely the reason.

You can see why I concluded it’s a mood issue.  I find it ironic and frustrating.  It contributes heavily to my desire to replace all humans but nurses in most medical environs with AI, starting with psychiatry and psychology.  A human psychologist is offensive to me because it’s intrinsically half-assed.  I’m disgusted by partial effort, but it doesn’t blind me to the fact psychologists can get good results despite being hobbled.  I just know AI would do better due to being less fettered.  Moods;  They’re finding me in a bad one.

I just realized what triggered me.  I heard sirens while in Mexico City.  They still use the version we used in the US years ago.  I used to have a panic attack anytime I heard sirens.  It sucked.  It basically dictated where I could live peacefully.  Now, the newer siren sound doesn’t trigger me anymore.  At most, I get a sinking sensation that passes quickly.  (I suspect it’s genetic by now.)  When I hear sirens, a switch is flipped in my brain that signals my body to expect sudden death.  Good times.

This may be common, or it might be a quirk.  I don’t know (because people don’t like being asked if they feel a sinking sensation and impending doom whenever they hear sirens.)  It’s baffling.  They act as if my next question will be, “Do you think anyone will hear you scream?”  So it’s in the I wonder bin.  I saw a GI in the Denver airport and thought to myself, “OMG!  He’s so young!”  Then I remembered I’m old.  I finally understand why I almost got sent home before basic training (because nobody believed I was 17.)  Imagine how offended I was.

I pulled out my group photo of my basic training unit earlier.  I’m the only person smiling in the entire photo (53 people.)  (It was before I got the memo informing POC and soldiers not to smile in pictures.)  I looked pretty young back then, I guess.  I think it had more to do with how I behaved.  I was still very much a child at 17.  I’m the one who was taken home with a Drill SGT over a weekend to play barbies with her daughter, (because she knew I would get my ass kicked if she turned her back too long, but I didn’t know this at the time.)

I hope this passes quickly.  Tomorrow, my first bass guitar arrives.  It’s a lightly used Dean acoustic electric.  I love creating electronic music, but I would rather spend time with the actual instrument than my computer.  Creating sounds on my computer is awesome, but I only like to do it when it’s a sound I can’t produce for $200 (and some time on YouTube learning how to play.)  My first guitar was easily mistaken for a toy.  I’ve learned a few things since, and am looking forward to studying bass.  I have so much material in my head that I sometimes play on guitar while wishing it was lower pitched.

I use the bass pedal far more than the drummers I’m playing along with.  I think I have double bass pedal envy.  Okay, subtract the I think part.  I’m not ready for it, so I just use the shit out of my single pedal.  I need to anchor the padding beneath my kit because I keep inching forward and to the left.  When I try to drag it back into place, the puzzle piece connections get strained.  I’ve adjusted my hi-hat pedal so much it looks like someone was bored and had an ice pick.

Okay, I think I’ve distracted myself out of panicking.  Whew.  Sorry about the rambling.  I just finished Imagica by Clive Barker.  It was an incredible journey.  I’m still on a witches and magic streak but in such wildly different and unexpected ways.  It’s fascinating.  I’m reading Terminal World by Alastair Reynolds now.  I started laughing when witches were mentioned.   They seem to be everywhere.  I like them far more than vampires because they’re so Sappho.  (Women don’t automatically put me in combat mode, except for Ann Coulter.)  I’m off to read.

 

 

I hear everything.

The Depression Monster has me in a Full Nelson.  (I had to use Wikipedia.)  I’m no longer able to ignore him, but I’m flipping him the bird.  I’ve learned studying Stevie Nicks requires a commitment of sorts.  You have to accept the fact it’s going to hurt sometimes, or you have to move on.  I didn’t even need to think about it.  I like earning my passage into her world.  It’s calmer.  I also like how it doesn’t matter that I’m out of sync in time.

I’m on the second documentary now.  It’s called Stevie Nicks:  In Your Dreams.  I’m at the point where Katrina happened.  Fuck.  I wasn’t ready.  You can tell Stevie directed and edited.  It’s raw where it needs to be, and soft where it’s not.  I suppose this is a trigger warning.  Pause when you see the first hint of Katrina coming next.  It will be obvious now.  Make sure you’re in a safe place to ugly cry.  Get tissues and a few bottles of water.  Round up your pets, and your favorite blanket.  Then take a deep breath, and hit play.  You’re welcome.  (I do this because I love you.)

This hasn’t happened since I spent hours listening to Amy Lee (Hartzell) sing, Hello and Like You on repeat, while I wept with her over losing our little sisters.  It’s a good thing I eat intensity for breakfast.  I never thought I’d say that.  I’m so used to people telling me I’m too intense, (and having it sound like, “fuck off.”)  I’m glad it keeps proving valuable where it matters.  I slept on Tuesday night, so I should be good for a while.  I started writing my short horror story last night.  In hindsight, it may have been better to do it in the morning.

I learned some secrets about fear years ago.  It has a ceiling.  There’s nothing beyond scared shitless.  Further, I discovered there’s a limit to how long you can remain terrified.  I’m sure with practice you could extend it, but for most of us, it’s a relatively rare event.  It’s intense until you run out of energy.  Then it’s surreal.  It stays surreal while you recover a bit.  Then it repeats a few times, like a chorus.  But it has diminishing returns.  Your initial level of terror is greater than your fourth course.  Eventually, it just becomes hysterically funny.

Don’t look at me, I didn’t create these rules, I’m just reporting them.  This is how humans process prolonged fear.  At least the ones who don’t pop straight away, that is.  It’s not good news, but I believe it’s better to know up front.  I hate surprises.  So anyway, my point is I’ve learned how to cope with fear.  I don’t flee at the sight of it.  It’s a bitch, but so am I.  And you can refocus your eyes, I’m done giving myself a pep talk.  I plan on writing more tonight.  Last night I wrote two pages, then deleted them and started over.  I thought about an outline, then didn’t create one.  Finally,  I wrote two better pages.

Creative writing clearly had a far greater influence on my writing than English Grammar.  I love rules, except where creativity is involved, at which point it reverses.  Rules are for one type of thinking.  Creativity is for the other.  They don’t mix.  Mixing them should cause profound halitosis.  That’s how serious I am.  Incidentally, when my orchestra instructor tried to tell me how to feel about Beethoven, I noticed he had funky breath.  (I don’t believe in coincidences.  I’m far more impressed by irony.)

This is the closest I’ve ever leaned into my blog.  I’m incredibly impressionable, so it’s likely Stevie Nicks’ influence on me.  I’m becoming a little more open.  I didn’t see any of this coming.  Despite the tears, I’m having a fabulous time.  It’s a little like following a rabbit down a hole if you know what I mean. 😉  I have a long night ahead.  I’m off to get to it.

What does the little man inside say?

The Depression Monster is riding my back. It’s at minor annoyance level.  I’m a bit surprised by my suspicions of why I’m feeling low.  I think it’s because I’m studying Stevie Nicks, and I’ve come to a rough point in her past.  I’m at the overwhelming betrayal:  She was told she had to stop using cocaine or she’d die. Clearly, she stopped.  When she was recovering from addiction to cocaine, she was prescribed Klonopin.  It led to a worse addiction.  That’s a pretty big mind fuck.  I’m experiencing it retroactively, but apparently, my empathy didn’t get the memo.

I paused the documentary at that point to process what I’ve learned so far.  Fame is ugly.  It’s not new information, but watching Fleetwood Mac lose their innocence was hard.  I now know Rumours was created from pain.  They were all experiencing raw grief.  The successful album says a lot about their professionalism and abilities.  Most people don’t want anything badly enough to endure such circumstances.  They were about to make it big, but I don’t think they knew it.  They certainly earned it.

It bugs me something so sought after is basically a trap.  A trap for drug addiction, and a new type of loneliness exclusive to famous people.  It triggers my protective nature.  Fuck the universe for tempting so many people to strive for fame before revealing it’s true nature.  People don’t like to be fucked with, especially not after pouring everything they have into reaching for excellence.  Fuck.  Also, the men interviewed in this documentary are pissing me off.  They’re music producers from the late 70’s, which is probably enough explanation.

They’re accidentally doing a fairly good job of conveying how things went down, but you have to read between the lines.  They’re inarticulate and behave like frenemies at best, ex-lovers at worst.  Nobody is watching this documentary to hear about how butt-hurt the producers are decades after the fact.  Besides, Gen X women know misogyny speak fluently.  When men describe a woman as a bitch, diva, full of herself, bossy, and/or demanding, we are aware it actually means she was a formidable leader.  It says she didn’t submit to male dominance.  It means she’s someone worthy of our attention.

I’m noticing similarities between Stevie Nicks and Carrie Fisher.  They’re both survivors and storytellers.  They’re understandable to me.  I’ve probably stated this many times, but understanding is the path to love.  When you understand someone, you can’t help but love them.  Loving those who don’t know I even exist is surprisingly delightful.  It’s a safe secret.  I’m not very good at being a fan of famous people.  I rarely go to concerts because the other fans scare the shit out of me.  I’m pretty sure a lot of famous people have been traumatized by their fans.  We should rename fame.  It should be called Public Pain.  (I’m a huge fan of stating what’s meant.)

I can’t recall ever meeting anyone famous.  It’s a perk of living in South Dakota.  We’ve all rehearsed how we plan to act should it ever occur, but even my rehearsals haven’t gone well.  My imagination is kind of an asshole.  I’m barely able to manage it, (mostly because it amuses me too much to try very hard.)  The only famous person I’m confident I could meet (without regretting my behavior ever after) would be Michelle Obama.  I know exactly how that would go down.  She’d smile and offer to shake my hand, and I’d immediately start bawling.  I wouldn’t be ashamed because I know so many who would react exactly the same way.  (She’s probably used to it.)

I know I’m rambling on and on, but I can’t help myself.  I haven’t spoken to anyone but my cat in a few days.  (It was deliberate, but I’m an inch away from too weird, to begin with.)  So here we are.  I still have a profound sense the end of my life is impending.  It’s been over six months, but the feeling hasn’t waivered.  I hate to admit it, but I’m enjoying the planning process.  (I think it’s just that I like planning in general.)  I’m at a point now where I recognize I need to write a short story about my childhood nightmares.  It’ll be a cleansing.  I’ve always been reluctant to write it because it’s a horror story and it’s not reality.

I would suck as an author.  I have the discipline and imagination.  I don’t have the thingamajig required to convince anyone a fantasy is real.  The things I love most about novels are things I’m only capable of recognizing, not reproducing.  I’m pretty sure identifying them is more fun, though.  I don’t do the foreshadowing dance anymore, but I still get a burst of joy every time I recognize it on a first read.  That’s a lot of mileage considering I was in primary school when I learned of it.  But as a writer, I don’t foreshadow, I announce in advance.  Sigh.  Sophistication is a bitch.

Why give me comprehension without the skill?  That’s fucking mean.  But I’m not complaining, just rambling.  I’ve managed to put off this short story for most of my life.  I guess it’s time to purge it.  I’m extremely curious about what comes after life if anything.  I’m mostly sure the answer is nothing.  The thing I like most about that possibility is its nature; there can be no regrets.  The itsy bitsy chance someone imagined it right, or even close, is still enough to get lost in for a while.  It bothers me a bit that I’m not grieving, though.  Does it mean I’m ready?  We’ll see.  I’m off to beat my drums.

 

 

 

 

Still with the neck hole?

Content Warning:  Descriptions of severe depression, the aftermath of sexual assault.

 

 

I’m feeling much better.  Turns out, it wasn’t a round of severe depression, as evidenced by my improved condition a few days later.  I believe the suddenness (that word is spelled so redundantly) in which my happy-go-lucky stasis was shattered led me to panic and overreact.  My bad.  (Please, dear Universe, don’t use this as an excuse to teach me the difference between mild and severe depression.)  I do remember on some level.  A level I can push away at will.  Usually.

The scenario that stands out the most for me is when I was an inpatient at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.  I was severely depressed.  I remember walking outside to a roofless enclosure within the ward.  I don’t recall any thoughts.  I crashed in a moment.  I had to lay down on the cement.  I remember only being able to muster the necessary energy to lower myself somewhat gently.  Then that was all I had.  I could only breathe and lay there.  It was like I was paralyzed.  I couldn’t move, but I had no idea why.  I didn’t even feel upset or concerned about it because it took more than what I had.  I’m the type of person who seriously considers abandoning my apartment over a spider.  I hate bugs.  I have the willies just sharing that fact.

That’s how I remember severe depression.  It’s nothingness.  No control, no abilities, and no drive.  It’s laying on the bare ground while a Daddy Long-Legs spider crawls on my face (when typically it would have resulted in a frenzied attempt to practically peel the skin off my face.)  It took 18 months of my life to get from that point to the person who could do a task without weeping.  I remember my Mom suggested I do a load of laundry one day after I was out of the hospital.  The question filled me with panic.  I learned how to do laundry when I was 12.  I relearned when I was 28.

The second time required me to trust in myself and my abilities again, after spending so long as an inpatient.  I wish I didn’t remember that part so well.  My mom’s suggestion sent my mind racing immediately.  What else am I going to have to start doing again?  Why is this so hard?  Why are you doing this to me?  Can’t you see I’m broken?  I deeply resent the interruption to my life, the termination of my military career, and the murder of who I used to be.  All because a man decided his momentary pleasure was more valuable than my existence.  The mindset is where I focus my fury.  Those who view women as mere sex toys and worse.

Severe depression is traumatic.  The women who slept on my right at Walter Reed was undergoing ECT for depression at the time.  She was funny, I liked her.  There were people from all branches of the military at Walter Reed.  I met a lot of individuals who were there for attempting suicide, often over their sexuality.  They were always quickly processed out of the service back when it was Don’t ask, Don’t tell.  I’m glad they stopped that bullshit.  It should have been, Don’t treat humans like shit, Don’t drink and drive.  I bet my slogan would have resulted in far fewer deaths.  (Don’t worry, I’m keeping my day job.)

I just needed to clarify the varying degrees of depressive episodes.  It’s easy to get the impression PTSD is a walk in the park based on what I share when in actuality, I’ve been living with it for several years.  I’ve had psych nurses teach me all about coping skills, how to distract myself, and most importantly, how to trust my ability to endure.  Then I had the remedial course, the refresher, and the graduation ceremony, (when the nurse kindly but firmly reminds you about having the skills but needing to actually use them.)  I earned my walk in the park through endurance, experience, and a blessedly short attention span.

Side note: Thanks, J. and M.

You bought a car because it was owned by Jon Voight?

Content Warning:  Sweary as fuck, angry, and unsafe for anyone feeling fragile/suicidal.

 

 

I’ve gone and tripped into severe depression.  I usually only dabble in low-level depression.  For some reason, I forget what it’s like to be severely depressed soon after I stop experiencing it.  I can recall feeling wrecked, but my mind shies away from remembering it well or lingering.  There were signs, but I don’t tend to pay attention until one of them smacks me in the head.

All the things I worry about silently have surfaced and demanded I pay up in stomach acid, anxiety, and restlessness.  My thoughts are all over the place.  I forget what I was about to do every time I try to do something.  I can’t find my empathy.  I feel cold and emotionally detached.  It feels like I’m on a rollercoaster.  Every few minutes my stomach drops like I’m free falling.  I’m out of breath like I just sprinted, yet I’m sitting here, rigid and numb.  I want to run so badly, but it’s against the rules.  I have very strict rules during these episodes.  It’s how I’ve lived this long.

I don’t interact with people when severely depressed.  I also don’t drive, shop online, or leave my home.  It upsets me how severe depression alters my thoughts.  I feel like a parasite has invaded my mind and has taken control while I’m still in here, alarmed by what it’s doing.  But nobody can hear me scream.  Some parasite hijacked my perception.  Intellectually, I’m aware it’s because I’m depressed, but this fucking parasite doesn’t believe me.

It’s like I’m in a heated debate with the parasite over which of our perceptions is accurate.  I used to like debating.  Now it just makes me tired.  The parasite insists everyone I know despises me overtly, and everyone realizes it but me.  How the fuck do I debate that?  So I wing it and throw out statistical norms.  I’m not falling for that shit this time!  So of course, the parasite comes at me with my sparkling history of making and maintaining friendships.  (It doesn’t sparkle at all, it’s sarcasm.)  Damn.  Right in the nuts.  Sigh.

That’s alright.  Fuck everyone.  Fuck you, fuck me, and fuck that guy over there.  I can convince myself I don’t care if everybody hates me.  I’m autistic; I’ve had lots of practice.  So take that, you parasitic prick-face.  And more of the like.  I’d like to go for a run.   But shit!  Why does it have to be so fucking hard?  I want my mind back.  I need it!  I was using it!  It’s fucking mine!  Parasite, get out and die in a fire!

I want to break lots of things.  Preferably those that shatter on impact.  Why am I so angry?  Why am I feeling this way when I didn’t do anything wrong?  I do every little fucking thing depression demands.  It’s a lot.  I could use that time to do other stuff.  But no, I have to fucking deal with depression.  I have to fucking exercise even when I don’t fucking want to.  I have to pass on delicious things like Cheetos and Pringles because if I indulge just one fucking time, I fall off a fucking cliff of despair.  Is that fair?  No.  No, that is not fucking fair.

This shit should only happen to people who are hateful and vile and mean.  The ones who do horrible shit to others just because they’re fucking evil.  They’re the ones who should have a parasite in their brain trying to convince them life isn’t worth enduring times like these.  But no, I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.  I hate this.  It isn’t worth it.  I just keep fighting likely out of habit.  Maybe one day I’ll be the first person to die from eating Cheetos (in a roundabout way only others who get it comprehend.)  Although, it would be cool to die hilariously.  I’m going to go stim and not die.  Because fuck depression.

His wife is in a coma…

The Depression Monster put me in an illegal sleeper hold.  Usually, this would have pissed me off, but I couldn’t muster the necessary energy.  Instead, I rolled with it.  I went straight for the nuclear arsenal.  I gathered my weighted blanket, my favorite tops, my bag of dice, and my pillow.  I headed for the living room and made my nest in the Lay-Z-Boy recliner.  I turned on Netflix and watched Louis C.K.’s new special.  He was wearing a suit!  He looks like he’s taking better care of himself.  (I hope I’m right.)  Within minutes, I could feel The Depression Monster begin loosening his grip.  Laughing always trips him up.  When it was over, I had a huge grin my face, and I was on the verge of belly laughing for hours after.

I wasn’t fucking around.  I don’t have time for days when I can’t lift my head without intense effort.  My PTSD begs to differ, but I’m becoming a ninja when it comes to coping with depression.  Sometimes I wonder if my PTSD is improving over time.  I push myself to my limits as often as possible because I’m convinced they stretch and loosen under stress.  I also do this with my running to satisfy my methodical inclinations.  I periodically run as fast and far as I can so I can run faster and farther in the future.  The results are easily measured.  I’d like to think the limitations caused by having PTSD are being stretched and loosened, and therefore improving.  I wish it were that simple.  The tricky part lies in being retraumatized.  I honestly don’t think it’s easy to avoid being traumatized while living on earth for more than twenty years.  It would take a lot of effort, and you’d probably be in a bubble.

Life is traumatic.  Fucked up things are happening to someone right now.  Others are being traumatized by witnessing.  Collectively, we’re the most destructive force on the planet.  Individually, many are deeply scarred by humans behaving badly.  Or accidentally.  Or unfortunately.  I’m one of the many who got pushed too far.  I say pushed too far because there are so many things that can trigger PTSD it’s mind boggling.  I found myself in a situation my mind wouldn’t believe was a reality in real time.  The process of accepting it was a lot like grieving the loss of a loved one, only it was done alone in a hostile environment.

The combination of shock and isolation led to acquiring PTSD.  Had I been able to fathom the possibility, or had I been around someone I trusted enough to allow inside my personal hell, I likely would have avoided getting PTSD.   There may be other factors that increased my susceptibility, but I’m skeptical.  On second thought, I do have a known bug:  I’ve been told I’m overly certain.  It hurt my feelings the first five or six times, then I got over myself and accepted it’s the likely truth.  This bug might have contributed, too.  It’s usually debugged in early adulthood, but my trauma occurred before I got there.

I think what people mean when they call me too certain now is I’m militant.  I like this about me.  It’s an efficient mindset.  It’s a bit cold, but warmth is sacrificed for readiness.  I’m just paranoid enough to stay ready.  (Yep.  Zombies.)  It also acts as a filter.  People who are immediately repelled by my well adjusted weird don’t like me after spending more time with me, either.  I like my rejection up front.  I just cracked myself up.

I’m so happy I can walk across the room without using The Force, today.  (I chanted, The Force is with me, I’m one with The Force while doing it earlier, of course.)  Making fun of Rogue One is as fun as watching it.  It’s the cotton candy of the Star Wars saga.  Well, except the final moment.  Even She can’t make us overlook such a vast uncanny valley.  I’m still pissed they did such a shitty job on such an important few seconds of fan candy.  Disney needs to remember fans are the only reason buying Star Wars was profitable.  Without us, it’s just another movie.  I’m off to read.

 

The speed dial is like a relationship barometer.

So here we are.  A month into 45’s regime.  The disturbance in the force is still resonating at high frequency.  A lot of Americans are wondering when Congress plans to do something other than run and hide from their constituents.  It’s frustrating because we’re discovering so many GOP politicians don’t give a shit if their constituents know they don’t represent them.  They don’t think anyone is going to hold them accountable for their actions.  They feel quite confident in the fact that they run the committees that oversee their corruption.

It’s depressing.  I know a lot of people are struggling to keep their chin up.  I’m so proud of The Resistance.  I know it’s painful having friends and loved ones who don’t share our views.  It’s agonizing to disagree so vehemently with people you care about.  The reason you care about them is that they’re loveable.  But loveable can still be frustrating as fuck!  Hang in there.  Don’t turn your back on them, they’re going to need your support no matter what happens.  Please, hang in there.  Remind yourself what made you love them in the first place, and hold that thought tightly.  We’ll get through this.

Keep up the good work.  Keep reading and listening to leaders and news sources that consistently pass fact checking.  Follow your representatives on social media to open another avenue of communication.  Keep calling and telling your representatives what you want them to do on your behalf.  If you can’t get through, leave a message.  If they shut off their phone, send a postcard or letter.  Be persistent.  Remember, not everyone we’re fighting for can do this, so if you’re able, thank you so much for lifting others with you.

I’m doing my part and following a good leader within The Resistance. If you haven’t joined yet, here is a link to an ACLU-run site that can help you get involved.  Also, don’t forget to donate to the ACLU if you’re able.  I’m using the funds I saved by canceling cable to send them a monthly amount.  I have to say, it feels great to donate money to them.  I gave to Bernie during his campaign, but that was the first time I put money into politics (willingly).  Now I’m addicted to activism with my wallet.  The best part is it’s not contributing to my “too much stuff” issue.  Bonus.  It’s got to be in my top ten adulting actions thus far.

Remember to step away when you need to, and come back refreshed.  It’s a marathon, not a sprint.  Don’t feel guilty for self-care.  It’s mandatory for humans who want to continue being humane.  The Obama’s are back and looking rested and ready to dig in.  Hillary Clinton has also been publicly cheering us on.  They’re with us.  But even better, we have each other.  If you need a shoulder, I have two.  You can reach out to me knowing I’m awkward and dorky and usually ruin the three jokes I know, but I care about you because you’re alive.  Being alive sucks sometimes.  When that happens, reach out.  Some days are too heavy to carry alone.

 

How to create an anti-depression kit.

*Not a replacement for medical advice from a physician.

Here is a guide to creating an anti-depression kit.  I’ve referred to mine in the past as my Depression Box.  What you choose to call yours is your choice.  As this is a guide, your own creativity is encouraged.  I began with a cardboard box and decorated it with stickers.  I added some favorite movies and a Wanda Sykes video.  Her comedy is like a digital Prozac infusion.  I watch it sparingly, so it doesn’t lose its power.  I acquired the stickers from thinkgeek.com and various geek subscription boxes.  I’ll add more over time.  I deliberately left the decoration minimal to allow for future activity.

Amazon has an extensive collection of adult coloring books.  I purchased a version with black backgrounds that make the colors pop.  Another is stylized cuss words and candy.  The Balance book has intricate patterns.  My favorite so far was anthropomorphized unicorns being assholes.  I choose things that amuse me because laughing is my favorite weapon against The Depression Monster.

I invite all to create their own Anti-Depression kit using the things you enjoy.  It’s important to remember coping skills are for coping.  They aren’t a cure.  They’re a distraction.  Activities you enjoy are far more tempting when you’re depressed.  I save a few things I love doing just for when I’m depressed.  I know it’s not easy to do anything when you’re suffering an episode of depression.  It took time for me to consistently follow through with my coping skills, and trust that they would get me through a rough patch.  It takes practice and effort, just like so many things in life.

*Note again this is not a substitute for medical advice from a physician.  This is a coping skill that works for me.  In adapting it to your own arsenal against The Depression Monster, be creative.  If you’re unsure what types of activities you like, experiment and see what works for you.  I’ve recently added a few paint-by-number sets, and I only eat chocolate when I’m depressed.  In doing so, I created a depression-proof enticement.  It certainly doesn’t make me look forward to an episode, but it takes a bit of power away from The Depression Monster.

I invite you to share your own Anti-Depression kits and will add your link to a list so we can all see what others have done, and get new ideas.  Respond to this post with a link to photos or a blog post of your kit to be included.  Here is a link to my little sister’s kit.  She’s so creative!  You should follow her blog, she’s brilliant.  Now go make your own.