Nope, it’s not COVID-19, although that is obviously a continuing source of anxiety.
My bigger problem right now is depression. Unlike coronavirus, there is no potential for avoiding this situation.
Depression runs through my family like a deep vein of coal. Sometimes it is easy to say my underlying sadness is situational, other times it just is. Like a shadow, some sort of darkness has always remained attached to me in one way or another.
Fortunately I have found ways to address my mood disorder. Counseling, antidepressants. But also diversion. If I am busy enough, it is generally sufficient to overcome.
What is happening right now is a game changer. Extroversion is part of my natural defense against despondency. And never in my life have I gone three weeks with no one touching me unless they were taking my blood pressure, attaching EKG leads, or poking me with a needle.
Sure, I have Kumo, my little white dog. He is an amazing comfort but it is not the same as the company of a human being.
I find myself arising in the morning only to go back to bed. I would rather sleep than do anything else and that is simply not normal.
Yesterday I asked my oncologist if we could double my dose of Prozac. This is a first for me, and I am hoping it is temporary.
However I am determined that I shall not be brought down by my very own demons. In some ways, this is the most difficult thing I have ever done, because of the complete and total social isolation. Desert islands are not my idea of paradise. I need contact–I need people. But I also need to make absolutely certain I don’t come down with COVID-19.
Hi Linnea, I read your posts and am cheering you on from the Chicago area. I am sorry that you are feeling so down. I figure you have been using FaceTime and other types of videoconferencing with your loved ones… there is no way around the reality of the isolation. Wishing you reprieve from the depression, hang in there. 💪🏼💪🏼💪🏼
Linnea, I wish there were words to relieve you of even a particle of the heaviness you’re going through. You are in the hearts of many, including mine. Sending love and light.
> Sometimes it is easy to say my underlying sadness is situational,
> other times it just is.
In the email leading up to my December 2006 appointment that immediately preceded my cancer discovery, I wrote to my doctor that for the first time in my life, I felt like there were more endings than beginnings in my future. It was the first time I’d ever comprehended what depression could feel like; I had never had any idea how anyone could be not optimistic. I mean, something great might happen tomorrow, right?? (What a fortunate upbringing I’d had.)
I explained to him how there were circumstances that made despair entirely sensible, and asked how they can tell if it’s “endogenous” (chemical, internal) or situational. As I’m sure you know, he told me it’s now understood that the cause doesn’t matter – the condition is what it is, regardless of source, and so is the treatment. We started an antidepressant. Within 2 weeks we found out I was dying, which changed everything… once I survived, my mood had, ahem, shifted!
I know voice isn’t contact, but if you want a call, of duration 10 seconds or more :-), ping me on one channel or another. I got nothin’ better to do with my time than relive our chance meetup in that Goodwill parking lot 🙂
We are all in this together. Better days are ahead🌺❤️
You are in my prayers 🙏