I exist to you
the way a single leaf
on a tree
an enormous forest
I exist to you
the way a single leaf
on a tree
an enormous forest
“I feel very alone”
“I’m having a bad day”
“I like being alone but I hate feeling lonely”
“I’m sad right now”
“I am surrounded by people and yet feel very alone”
These are all things I’ve put out onto social media at some point recently. Or as I’ve started to think of the varying platforms: The Void. The definition of void that I’m referring to here is defined as “a completely empty space” because I can say or shout or whisper or yell whatever I’m feeling or thinking on whichever platform I choose, and I mainly throw those thoughts and feelings out there so that they’re not manifesting themselves in my head.
I know that there is a chance that I’ll get a response from someone and occasionally I have received some but what I’ve mostly found is that when you try to tell people that you need company, in whatever way you word it, they make excuses or say, “yeah, we need to catch up soon!” but you know they don’t mean it.
In many ways I can’t blame them because they have their own things to deal with, even ones that I may know nothing about. However, when I’m feeling the way that I am when I throw those thoughts and feelings out there, I take those rejections personally. Especially when they come from people that say that they’ll be there for you and support you no matter what. There are always exceptions.
Reading over this post it feels quite dramatic but at the same time this is how I feel when I feel this way and if you know you know. If you don’t know maybe you do now.
I’ve taken a really long break from writing on my blog. It’s not that I haven’t wanted to write but I’ve lacked any and all motivation to write. Why should I be sharing my boring every day life and thoughts? Who’ll read them anyway? Well, maybe someone will who’s going through something similar; someone who feels quite lost and without purpose and stays up too late because it’s the only time they feel like they can really think but then that late bedtime hinders them the following day? I can’t be the only one who does that.
Skip to almost two months ago when I went to see a psychiatrist (unrelated reasons) and they were more interested in my mood and my socialising habits. They asked me if I felt depressed and honestly what kind of question is that really? I mean, what does depression really feel like? I could use a bunch of metaphors to try and describe what it is to me and how it affects me but to say, “yes, I feel depressed”, seems too strange. Maybe it’s because people will use that term so loosely these days, “I’m depressed, my favourite show got cancelled” or, “I have to work over the long weekend, I’m so depressed“.
Maybe because, to me, depression isn’t a feeling, maybe because, bare with me here, depression is a state of mind because it’s a mental illness. Depression affects your brain and the way your mind works so much that the internal workings, the way you think and function, start to affect how you act and appear outwardly. So why was this person who can diagnose me with depression asking me if I feel depressed? No, I don’t feel depressed, I feel like I always do, tired, stressed, awful, despondent, exhausted, worried, frustrated, drained, pathetic, lazy, worthless, stupid, panicked and utterly useless. Nothing new.
“When was the last time you felt happy?” they asked, what?? I don’t know, I don’t keep an actual log of my “happy meter” to tell you the last time I was above a bloody 5 let alone off the charts. Upon thinking that I realised that I can’t remember the last time I was really happy. Maybe if I have to really think about it, it’s been too long?
To cut a long story short, they did diagnose me with Major Depressive Disorder *salutes* and prescribed me anti-depressants that, “may help restore your interest in daily living“. As if it’s a conscious decision, like one day I decided that I had no interest in daily living but I just keep doing it out of necessity. After one month I had to check in and I reported that I didn’t feel any different so they doubled the dosage. Maybe it hasn’t been long enough to say for sure but the extra quantity I’m taking doesn’t seem to be having much of an effect so far. I know that they’re supposed to make you worse before they make you better (I’ve been through this before) but I’m still skeptical on how they’re supposed to improve my life. The brain is a very powerful thing but I have my doubts over whether or not we can control it or “rebalance” the chemicals within it with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.
I have so many thoughts that I thought I ought to start writing them down, so here I am making some kind of log about this round with anti-depressants and my feelings of depression. I honestly don’t mean to be so negative I guess my doubts just really shine through because this is my normal and I can’t see it changing.
“I’ll call you”, to say this is a phrase that I’m not particularly fond of is an understatement. I do not like telephone calls. They are anxiety inducing for me.
This anxiety can be triggered with the mere thought of having to call someone; talking myself into actually picking up the phone to dial and breathing calmly—breathe in, breathe out—while it rings.
What are you going to say? They don’t want to hear from you. You’re boring. What if they don’t answer and you have to leave a voicemail? Just hang up, it’s not too late.
The instant anxiety of the phone ringing. This is consistent with my own phone or one that I have to answer, but is also applicable to the people or person’s phone I am spending time with. My heart leaps into my throat, palms start sweating and mouth goes dry—breathe in, breathe out—shake it off and answer the phone.
Why are they calling? They’re angry about something. It’s your fault whatever it is. Will I be able to answer their questions? No, your mind has gone blank. What are words?
The sheer apprehension of a promised phone call. The anxiety that comes with waiting for said phone call can make me not want to check my phone and instead distance myself from it. The anticipation of will-they-won’t-they call has my heart racing in the back of my throat all day. Until I pick up my phone, check it—breathe in, breathe out—see there are no missed calls and my heart is allowed to slow down for a few minutes. This anxiety can last all day, depending on what time the phone call actually comes in; the relief that is felt afterwards is so great. However, sometimes that phone call never comes, so after a certain time (when a respectful person will no longer make a telephone call) I allow myself to discard my phone entirely, just in case, and squash the anxiety that has been building up all day as best as I can.
They’ve changed their mind. Why did they want to talk to me anyway? They didn’t, it’s a test. Why couldn’t they just write it down? What are they going to say? Don’t call, please.
The anxiety of actually being on a phone call. The ability for my brain to function and get my mouth to say the words has completely failed me but the ability for all saliva to stop being produced in my mouth is working overtime. If I haven’t prepared dot points to direct the conversation in some way most things that needed to be said will be forgotten. My hands sweat and shake, my skin is itchy—breathe in, breathe out—just say a closing statement and finish the conversation then you can hang up.
What did they say their name was? I wonder if the saliva from my mouth is coming out of my palms? What did they just say? I was thinking about hand saliva. Say something so they know you’re listening. I have to pace now, keep moving. What do they want from me?
There are some exceptions for the telephone call induced anxiety, which include calling a select few people, calling automated machines, answering a call when I know what it will entail such as when making plans or meeting up with them. Calling someone back when I know what it will entail, like after they have left a detailed voicemail or sent a text message that was in no way vague or ambiguous. Adrenaline fuelled phone calls.
The anticipation of a phone call that never comes can at times be disappointing or dejecting but far more often that not it is such a relief. To talk to someone in person, see their expressions and body language, or to have their words to look back over is much more comforting and pleasant to me. Being face to face with someone and occasionally sending someone my words (that I perceive as potentially risky) can bring on their own type of anxiety, but it’s a type that I find I can manage more easily than the kind that comes with telephone calls.
What does it mean to be a good person?
I think that I do good deeds, that I’m polite, that I’m open minded and a good listener, I have patience when needed, I’m courteous, I don’t butt in and I go out of my way to help others. But I don’t know if that makes me a good person.
I have lied and I can’t say that I won’t lie ever again, I think bad things and thoughts, I wish some people would stop talking, I say awful things when I’m angry, I lose my patience, I’m stubborn, I don’t always follow through and I fall short of my own expectations. But does that make me a bad person?
Do any of these things cancel each other out? I don’t believe they do. I’m not sure if someone can be wholly good or wholly bad. I believe that it’s part of human nature to have both good and bad qualities and tendencies.
Granted, some people sway more to the good end of the spectrum and others to the bad. Sometimes you can think you’re doing a good thing and you can feel good about it but if it isn’t good to someone else, or someone else suffers because of it, is it still a good thing you’ve done?
I could say that being a good person is in the eye of the beholder or that as long as you think what you’re doing is good then you should keep doing it. (There is some truth in the latter.) But if what you’re doing isn’t in fact good and you’ve just convinced yourself that it is then there’s not really anything good about it, it’s just an illusion of good. However, going back to the second part of that statement that has some truth to it; if what you’re doing is good and you’re not hurting anyone in the process or being intentionally cruel, and it makes you feel good, then you should absolutely keep doing it.
I’m not really sure where I’m going with this because I don’t have a conclusive answer, it’s something that’s been on my mind lately and something of an ongoing internal struggle, I wanted to get it out somewhere.
Do you have a definition of what it means to be a good person? Do you believe you are a good person? Please let me know what you think of this topic, I may write about it again.
I had one of the worst sleeps I have ever had on Sunday night, I can’t even begin to explain how or why, but it was truly horrible. When I woke I sat straight up convinced I was late for work then realised it was only 4:30 am! A decent hour and half before I needed to be up. When I next woke up I felt disoriented and groggy and exhausted and then I realised my alarms were going off and it was definitely time to get going.
I honestly had to turn my alarms off and calm myself down because I must have been tensed up all night, really struggling against something, even if it was just the sheets. It really threw my morning off. After all I said about Black Hole Sundays being to blame for throwing Mondays in it I had a rotten sleep and it all seemed to just be proving my point.
This week is going by quite quickly. On Sunday night when I posted I thought I’d have something new to post on Wednesday night, but here we are on Wednesday night and my brain has no new things to think to write to post. It’s been a mushy brain week.
I promise my next post will be much better, even if it’s just raving about Twenty One Pilots, who I will be seeing for the second time this Friday night, at least something with more substance than a vague and disturbing dream that I can’t even remember but has somehow stayed with me throughout the week. I do like to discuss dreams though so this will not be the last time they’re mentioned.
I hope your week isn’t speeding away from you, unless, like me, you have something you cannot wait for on the weekend.