I Keep Trying


I Keep Trying

puzzle-693873_640It starts with losing interest in activities I once enjoyed. Then the crying at inconvenient moments comes on. That's fun. Then the irrability kicks in. That's fun too. It affects my work and my life.

Stress and depression. One leads to the other. Makes life, um, interesting. I've struggled with it for a long time. I quit living because of it. Quit school. Quit work. I didn't like doing it but in my opinion if you can't handle something and it starts to affect the people around you, it's time to step back and get some help. ( Sorry for the run-on sentence, I'm bad for that.)

Annnnyway... I do have a point. For the two people who know and have read my book, I've been a caregiver for a long time. Since my 20s. Parents, Grandparents, The Husband. Yes, that's his name. It's an honor and a privilege. I like doing it, I'm glad I can. I've learned a lot, grown in many ways.

It can also be a bitch. Sorry. But it can. The hospitalizations, the various health problems, navigating the medical field where medical professionals are incompetent, lazy. or both. Navigating the insurance field where the, uh, insurance people are incompetent, lazy, or both. Quitting work because you can't handle both. Going back to work because you're so far under the poverty line you can't even see it. Feeling guilty for going back to work. Wondering if you handle both and PLEASE God, don't let me snap and kill someone.

Fun thoughts floating around, ain't they?

I usually handle it well, I'm meaner and tougher than I look. Wait... No, I'm not. But for someone prone to depression--one who at times has mini-breakdowns--it's important to take care of yourself.

Right now I'm fighting it. I don't want to get depressed again. Sleeping all the time sounds like fun but it really ain't. So here's what I do:

1. Take Paxil.
2. Keep faith.
3. Take Paxil.
4. Take time for yourself--go to the movies, go out to eat, talk to friends.
5. Take Paxil.
6. Stay healthy--eat right, exercise. Don't go overboard on the freakin' Doritos. ( But it's so much cheesy goodness!)

If you can't function, you can't help others. So keep trying, keep fighting, and everything will work out.

That's what I do.

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Ugh - I needed to edit some parts but cannot find an edit button but I am sure you understand the gist of my post. :-)


Hi LisaD - The difficult part about depression is that people cannot see how deep this illness affects us so I understand what you are going through. Through a particularly rough period, a really close friend told me she needed to put some distance between us as she could only handle positive and upbeat people. I sent flowers when it was her birthday, continued to send Christmas cards for the last 4 years. I totally understood where she was coming from and respected her wishes. (I can't pretend it did not hurt but I *did* understand.)\n\nSeveral weeks ago an acquaintance of mine who I bumped into when out shopping - she told me have you heard that Amie has been admitted to a psychiatric ward and her husband is debating whether to allow them to give her brain zaps as none of the medications were helping her. I went over to see her immediately and boy - did that turn into a big crying fest! She gradually got better, was discharged and I was delighted when a knock on my door about 3 months ago revealed my friend standing there. She asked if she could come for a visit and she apologized for her having asked me for us to take a social break from one another. \"Colette, I just did not understand what you were going through. I just had NO idea how this illness can take one to an incredibly deep and dark place and no understands\"\nThis is the sad part of depression. People who have never experienced it look at us, they think we are a 'Debby Downer' and they simply disappear. And that is when we MOST need to feel loved, cared for and to know that we won't feel abandoned. \nI can relate to everything you describe and all I can offer you is a listening ear - no matter what mood you are in. Before my Mom moved in with me - I had a little social group 'meet' in my flat every last Friday evening with depressed ladies and we would not talk about depression - we would watch fun movies, I hired a magician one month which went down a treat - we would plan shopping trips to the mall where we would buy anything fun/cute and it could not cost more than R20.00 and then over tea and cake - we would swop out the little token gifts and it brought SO much joy. One evening we had a barbeque at the pool in the apartment complex here and it was hysterically funny to see 9 - short - tall - overweight - underweight women ranging in ages from 59 (me) to 72. \nThe only rule we had was no one was allowed to speak about depression. That was our one day per week to just do everything and anything to laugh, to have fun, to be silly, to be playful and even though we knew about our underlying, communal issue - that day was our FUN day. The rest of the month? We all knew we could phone or email one another if we were going through a rough patch and we knew that we were there for one another. If we felt that someone was withdrawing and isolating, the red flag would go up and as a group we all reached out to stand by our pal in need. It worked brilliantly and though I had to put it on hold as I am now totally tied down taking care of Mom - one day our group will be resurrected again :-)\nSending you hugs - just know you are not alone! \nColette xoxo


Mom's book collection left me a trail to find my way through the hardest days--faith, humor, and curiosity about many things past and present.


You've had so many difficult losses that it's understandable that it sometimes feels like just too much. Your fighting spirit will get you to better. \n\nGood to hear from you!!


Thanks for your post, Lisa. I went back and reviewed your old posts to refresh your story in my mind. It is so obvious that you are a furious fighter, with your wit and honesty helping you in everything you accomplish. I understand the translation between what you know and what you do with what you know. You're doing a great job with it, keep going!

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