Sunday, September 28, 2014

Trying to understand depression

What happened to me yesterday? It happens regularly.  Not every week.  Maybe a few times a month.  It depends.  Sometimes there are phases when it happens a lot, and sometimes phases when it doesn't happen for a while.  It's getting hit with depression.  I'm always trying to figure out how to prevent or alleviate such incidents, but I haven't really figured it out yet.

Usually it's on a Saturday when I have nothing scheduled.  So I have some sense that I should keep busy, should fill my life with events, to prevent it from happening.

But, I also have a sense that it comes from fatigue, and that I need to rest.  Partly it's physical fatigue.  The other part is fatigue from a life of trying to live up to the demands of others.  So I want rest, and I want to indulge in doing what I want, rather than what I'm supposed to do.

Yesterday I started out the day setting up a spreadsheet for tracking my expenses.  So it started with productivity.  But that was the extent of my productivity.

After having breakfast and getting dressed, I figured I would read nonfiction.  Reading because I want to indulge in something that I wanted to do, that wasn't a chore.  Nonfiction because I try to avoid fiction because I think it makes depression worse.

I took up one book, but was already near the end of it.  I finished that one and sought another.  I saw a number of unappealing books on the shelf.  Then I chose Boldly Live as You've Never Lived Before.  It's about how Star Trek characters are hero archetypes that can inspire you.  I read a little bit, but what struck me was that I'd rather be inspired by Buffy characters.  So, I went to watch Buffy DVDs.

I don't think it  made me depressed.  I was already depressed.  Watching them left me the same or slightly better.

Today was fairly similar.  I started off thinking I would be productive today.  I had breakfast.  Then I took a nap.  I did a little ironing, and thought I'd get a lot done today.  But somehow I ended up reading fiction.

I am indeed tired.

But I don't think that's all.  I think there are things looming that I don't want to face.  I think fiction is an escape.

If I didn't have anything looming, would I instead spend my time going for a walk, rather than escaping into fiction?

What if I decided reading fiction is how I want to spend my time? Instead of trying to resist it.

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