I just had a very positive session with my psychiatrist. It was the first one I have walked away from feeling ... yes ... he makes sense. I am glad that has happened. I was ready to give up on him. But really, the problem wasn't him; it was me. While I thought I was being proactive, all I was really doing was going through the motions.
Man oh man it is hard admitting shit when you thought you were right. It wasn't that I was wrong - it was just that I was stuck. I still am stuck but am about to jump. I will tie myself to a bungee cord and let it stretch until it is taut. It will oscillate up and down. As will my emotions. They will be stretched and stretched until they can be stretched no further. They will strain and they will oscillate. They will reach different highs and lows. But for this to happen I have to jump. And for me to jump I must be brave.
My psychiatrist rightly said I have all my eggs in one basket. And he is so correct. It is not something I set out to do. However, my depression has allowed me to become more and more isolated and withdrawn from life. In doing so, like a spiralling circle I was becoming more and more lost and lonely. I was relying more and more on just my husband to save me from this whirlpooling vacuum of despair.
Although I love my husband dearly, he can't be my everything. Nobody can. I need to see my friends, spend time in my community, look at rejoining a public speaking club and seek out activities that are meaningful to me.
So, from today I am emptying my basket. I am going to instead have little pods akin to Milkweed seeds. They will start small, growing and ripening and then bursting open into a beautiful silky transformation to be scattered by the wind. Seeking out and again starting anew. Ironically, after reading about Milkweed here on Wikipedia did you know that Milkweed sap is used externally as a natural remedy to poison ivy. I find that just so symbolic.
To compare my depression to poison ivy is such a great way to visualise it. To then allow my pods of Milkweed to ripen and have the sap overflow and relieve me is just a great way to think about it.
What will I put in my pods? I know I will have pods for my friends, pods for my art and creativity, pods for my writing and pods for autism/carers/mental health advocacy. My pod for my family will remain my largest but will have offshoots allowing me to find fulfilment and helping me to get out of my spiralling despair. I am also going to grow a pod for public speaking. I love public speaking and for years belonged to a public speaking club so it is time to have a go as us Aussies would say. My most important pod will be my mental health. I will continue to fill it with my CBT skills, mindfulness and meditation allowing no room for rancid evil head speak and lethargy.
The hardest thing for me to do will be to get started. To motivate myself and to keep at it. You my friends, my family and fellow bloggers have permission to enquire, gently question and in fact bloody well nag me about it.
It will take a lot of time, it won't be easy. I will be stepping out of my comfort zone and I will continue to want to return to the safety of my bed. But this bed while comfortable and safe is also my rusting stagnating anchor. I need to to cut anchor and start drifting and see where the tide will take me. While talking about this I just wanted to share a poem I love that I find also very poignant at the moment.
Love to you all, take care of your loved family and friends and remember 'fairytales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten' ~ G K Chesterton