A Few Friends

In my journal, I wrote that May was the worst month. When June came I was relieved that May was over. Did I really think that all the downs of May wouldn’t flow over? I’d like to think I’m not that dumb. But maybe I am. Or maybe I was just clinging to some hope (real or not).

The depressive episodes are getting worse. Steven sent me the contact to a counselor from his seminary. I’ll probably give her a call soon, but for now, I’m still in limbo. I can’t eat and I love eating. I don’t know how to talk anymore, which is frustrating because fun/life-giving conversations is my specialty. Not anymore. I can’t control what comes out of my mouth. I use to be able to bite my tongue and calm my gloomier thoughts. But now,  everything that comes out of my mouth is covered with a much angrier and withering view than I’m used to.

Friendships.

Maurice and Willa are good constants. I don’t feel like I have to hold back as much. Though, I still want to have a more colorful lens when we talk. Our Fact of the Day / Question of the Day has been a good anchor during my more off days. They’re like breaths of air when I’m drowning. I love the natural rhythm we have. I don’t think this is something that’s very easy to find. How lucky am I to have stumbled upon it. Sometimes, I feel like I might become a burden, and I’m still trying to navigate that. I don’t really know why I haven’t completely shut them out yet. Maybe it’s because they seem to be able to read my moods better than other people. Maybe it’s cause I know I can’t escape them. Their persistence is the best and worse thing about them.

Greg’s always shared a lot with me. His transparency and intentionality are things I value a lot. We’ve had more ups and downs in this friendship in the span of 6 months than I’ve ever had with anyone else. Most people I don’t let very close. I enjoy them and I share, and I can even go deep. But if it takes a turn for the worse and they leave, I just let them go. This friendship with Greg is harder to navigate and much harder to let go. Our rhythm is a little different than Maurice and Willa’s. We used to have amazing spirit-giving talks whether they go deep or not. Lately, it hasn’t been so. This is where I notice my failures the most. My inability to speak, to laugh, to encourage, or to joke becomes a thorn I can’t pick out. Level-headedness is something he said he appreciated about me. And in this season, I feel more out of my mind than ever. So I held back. Even though he offered to be my ear and my person for this stupid depression thing, I couldn’t get myself to actually tell him anything (even though I really want to). Because I didn’t want to be too much and too negative and too scatter-brained. I didn’t want to be dropped. And even though I’ve said some terribly mean things about our friendship (because pushing people away is my other specialty), he still tries to be a good friend. He doesn’t just let me leave without talking things out, and he puts food on my plate when I couldn’t do it myself cause I was falling down the rabbit hole again. Whenever we hang out, the only thought that goes through my head is how much I wish I can go back to the energizing, supportive, and talkative person I used to be.

Kristen’s been growing a lot. Though she struggles, I think she struggles well. Eyes to Jesus. She’s been having more bad days than good, and I understand a lot of what that’s like. Maybe only I think this, but her and I are pretty similar. We’re both allergic to emotions, we like to deflect, and we run from people a lot. It takes a lot of effort to convince her to do anything. But I keep trying because I know deep down she wants to be with people. And I haven’t been wrong yet. I try because I’m the same way. I’m stubborn because I’m afraid. It takes some people a long time to push me out of my comfort zone. Most people drop it after the 3rd or 4th “No thanks”. But I’ve realized that what some need is not a small nudge, but a forceful shoving. Kristen and I are just like that. Even though we met each other not too long ago, there’s a familiarity and comfort  I enjoy. She a great person to talk scripture with and share about church perspectives, if not anything else.

God. Sometimes I don’t know if He’s silent or I’m just a terrible listener. The past week of not being able to move or work left my spirit sulking in sin. I just think, “I’m suffering and I don’t know how to get out of it” or  “God’s redemptive power isn’t enough to get me out of my head” or “the entirety of my life and me as a person is a mistake… I serve no purpose.”

Something to pray over:

And I will give you rest,” i.e., I will stay you. Not – I will put you to bed and hold your hand and sing you to sleep; but – I will get you out of bed, out of the languor and exhaustion, out of the state of being half dead while you are alive; I will imbue you with the spirit of life, and you will be stayed by the perfection of vital activity. We get pathetic and talk about “suffering the will of the Lord”! Where is the majestic vitality and might of the Son of God about that? – My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers

Stop sulking. Get up and out. But not by my power, but the power of Christ. My wallowing and sulking displays my lack of faith, and I’ve been letting this fester into guilt. I do not get out of bed by myself. I’m not able to. But if by chance I do get up, it is because God has lifted me up. By his power, I rise. And by his power, I will continue to move forward.

Processing

My last few posts have been incredibly morbid. Sorry. I wish I could wield my brain to not think about suicide or death so much. I’ve been trying to dissect my brain bit by bit. WHY is it getting harder and harder to control my emotions? When did things start looking so dark?

Counseling. It would be great to do this with a professional, but the first place I contacted never got back to me, which prompted me to contact them again. They put me on a wait list a second time and said someone will call me two weeks later, which never happened. My cynicism, fear, and anxiety told me to give up after that, so I did for another month. Then I tried calling a new place, which didn’t take the insurance that I had. I wanted to call them back later and figure out something, but it didn’t happen. Family stuff. Different opinions. Sticky things. So I gave up again. And I haven’t tried any other place since. It might be an excuse, but it’s hard getting up again by yourself when the little bit of effort you’ve muster gets crushed multiple times already.

Dark thoughts. Here’s what I’ve processed.

I realized that my moods are harder to control when there’s a lot of people. Like there’s too much going on or I hear a lot of different conversations around me and voices start to blur. I get triggered. Everything gets really loud in my head and I start feeling unstable. I start thinking really fast to the point where I can’t retrace my thoughts. Which is probably why I get so frustrated that nothing I say or think makes any sense when I try to explain what I’m feeling or thinking to other people. I can’t trace it back to the original thought. The catalyst.

Also, I find myself slipping into darker moods when I’m really fixated on something that I’m either trying to figure out or that I can’t shake out of my head. Like an idea or question or unprocessed lie/truth. And I’m trying to think positively or just stop thinking at all, but I keep failing.

For example, if I see or hear something that stirs a strong reaction from me, I become fixated on it. I can’t stop thinking about it. I try to think my way out or around but then it arouses other thoughts and feelings. Then it all turns into frustration and negativity. It’s a dark spiral.

After that, it’s just a lot of headaches and struggling with insomnia. And reading/Netflix/writing/exercising can’t take my mind off it. Like I’m trying to keep busy by myself but it doesn’t really work.

Anchor. My friend thinks it’s a stability issue. Like, my church community isn’t stable, my friendships are still new enough that I can’t be confident that they’ll last, my school/career path is up in the air, and there’s nothing tangible that can keep my anchored to the ground. It’s like I’m in the ocean and trying to swim with no life jacket or anything to hold onto.

What do I do? Maybe I’m not trusting enough…