I had big plans for my week off. I was going to revitalize my whole life. I was going to look depression in the face and say, "Take that, depression". I was going to chronicle my findings on my blog and become a poster child for fighting depression. There would be posters of me, smiling, with a slogan in pink that said, "If I can beat depression, then so can you."
Looking back, I can see how it was a little unrealistic. I mean, one person can only do so much in a week. And when that one person is in the grips of depression, it's kind of difficult to single-handedly pull themselves out. I know that. I've dealt with that.
The thing about depression is there are levels of depression. I'm pretty sure I'm somewhere between 'hiding under the blankets' and 'do something constructive'. While depression can be all consuming, a constant ache in your soul, there's this little voice inside that says..."It's okay. There's a light at the end of the tunnel. Get through this, and you'll be okay. Just trust me, okay? It is not going to be like this forever." And if you can believe that little voice, then you really will be okay.
So, this was my plan (and bear with me here...the list is a little long):
I was going to quit smoking. Again, cold turkey. Again, expect for it to work. The tricky thing about smoking is that when you're stressed out, your mind thinks having a smoke will make you feel better. In actuality, it stresses you out more. So, take one of the stresses away, and voila...after the nic fits are gone, you feel less stressed. Nice plan, right? Right.
I was going to quit drinking coffee. Again, a stimulant. Immediate high, then crash later on - so they say. The thing is, I just really like the way coffee tastes. I don't think it has anything to do with caffeine. I know, smarty pants, that they make decaf coffee. I happen to be of the opinion that decaf coffee tastes like cardboard. I don't think I'm affected by caffeine, either. I can have a cup of coffee right before I go to bed and still fall asleep after only an hour or so of tossing and turning (which is actually very normal for me...) and I can be super tired and drink coffee and still feel super tired. Ergo: I just like it because of the taste. But because *they* say it's a stimulant, I'm willing to let it go in the name of mental health.
I was going to stop eating ANY processed foods. This basically means if it's not a vegetable, I can't eat it. Unless it's organic. And then I can't afford it (haha). Who has any idea what they put in Spam to make it last 10 years on the shelf. Not that I've ever had Spam...because um, ewwww it's meat in a can. But back to my point...what do they put in bread or deli meat or pasta to preserve it? And what does it do to our bodies? To our brains? I was going to make my own apple sauce with organic honey. I was going to steam veggies and buy fresh salmon and bbq it with a splash of lemon. I was going to eat organic yogurt. My whole body was going to be teeming with health.
I was going to start exercising. Practical, of course. Start off slow. Go for a walk. Then go for a longer walk. Then maybe put a bit of a jog into it. Then start running. By the end of the week, I'd be doing half marathons.
I was going to drink water. Lots of water. Like the recommended 8 glasses per day. Which is huge, because I hate the taste of water. But again, if *they* recommend it, it must be good for us, right? Right. I wasn't going to dilute it with Crystal Light or anything either. Straight up water. Oh ya!!
I think that about covers it. Water, exercise, organic...yep...that's it.
Oh, wait...nope. One more thing. I was going to call a therapist. Sit and talk about my feelings and fears and "Why the hell am I so angry?" This would have been constructive and practical. But I can't just seem to pick up my phone and dial the numbers. I have them sitting right in front of me, and it's free through work. But my experience is that you just sit there and tell them all these things you already know about yourself. And then you have to feign an epiphany in an attempt to make them feel like a) you're not stupid and b) they're good at their job. I know this, because I've done this. I've done the "ahhhh, yes!!" and the nodding, like, "Why didn't I think of this before?" When, really, I had thought of this a million times before because that is what I do...I over-analyze the shit out of things. And I paid her 90 bucks an hour.
We went to the beach, me and Q. What goes better with beach than ice cream? You guessed it...nothing. So, when we went to the beach again the next day...oh, who am I kidding? I've had ice cream every single day this week. Every single day. We went mini golfing and had lollipops to celebrate Q's victory. We rented movies and ate popcicles to cool down. I've had beer. I've eaten at McDonald's at least two times, three if you count Wendy's. I've eaten chips (ketchup...my favourite!!) and chocolate. Right now I'm snacking on black Twizzlers while typing. And I just finished a cup of coffee.
I think it's fairly obvious that I didn't do a thing. But looking at list like the one I just made, damn, that's intimidating. I could have started with just *one* thing and then go from there. But instead, I pick like 1500 things to do....overwhelming.
I did do one thing constructive. I've applied for 3 jobs. I have a stable job. One that pays me very well. I've grown to love my employees (some more than others, haha). It will provide for my future when I retire. It offers health benefits so I can keep what teeth I have left, and make sure my son is healthy. But...I don't see my son as much as I'd like to. Once he goes into grade one, I will see him on the occasional lunch hour and weekends. I am not a part time momma. I did not have a child so that someone else could raise him. He's only young once and I want to make sure that I'm there for him. I'm his momma. That's my job. That's the only job I really, really want. So I've applied for jobs where I will most definitely take a pay cut, my retirement might not be paid for, and I might be an employee rather than a manager. And it's totally okay, because it will allow me the opportunity to see my kid and be his mom.
I can feel my spirits rising already.