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  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by horsefaerie View Post
    Years ago, before anti depressants, people gave others good advice.

    You are not alone. Depression is anger turned inward. When disabled with depression do one good thing for you and one that life requires in that one day.

    Our thoughts feed our depression. I would not want anyone else running my thoughts but if they are going to hurt me I can change them. When ugly thoughts, self defeating thoughts and all other thoughts that cause me and my emotions distress I repeat endlessly "Let it go!". I make the conscious now defeat the ugliness.

    I had to learn this to cope with losing some of the use of my arms and chronic pain. I made it a habit. I do not attack myself. THere are plenty of folks available to do that. Amazingly so.

    I feed my spirit. I give myself permission to be who I am, exactly as I am right now. I do not ask others for their opinion of me. THey can keep that to themselves.

    THe horse world is full of people that know little or nothing about horses, yet they own them. I have learned to walk away and spend time with these incredible creatures, sometimes just smelling their fur. Everything you said is true. I make a note and I do my best to move on and away from foolish negative people.

    I have God, it helps. With God I have no need to even attempt to control everything. Rather practical really if one doesn't get carried away with THAT as well. You might want to hold off on finding God at the moment, people are even uglier about God than horses!

    Take baby steps. Celebrate your ability and awareness. Appreciate who you are and know that you have purpose even if you never get to see it. Let each day matter to you. Smile at people. Appreciate them once you can appreciate you.

    It is what it is. Breathe. Learn to breathe better. Explore life as it is not as what you think it is until you can change what you think.
    I actually thought the advice comment was really funny, and even though I'm really not looking for advice, yours is good. I will remember the 1 thing for me, 1 for life thing.

    I also see where grayarabpony is coming from. It's the sort of statement that people might read into. I just have a little bit of a different perspective as I've really tried pretty much everything and when I tell people I deal with depression, it seems really hard for them to accept that there isn't just "the thing" I haven't heard about that will make things a ton better, and usually "the thing" I need to try is a med. I totally relate to the living ghost thing although I do a little better than that most days. There were no good old days (and IMO no lost civilized time), meds don't work for a lot of people, depression is the symptom, not the disease, and a lot of people experience relief due to placebo affect (if this is you, RUN with it and don't look back! )

    I think my biggest task right now (as some of you hit on) is that I need to not worry about things that aren't mine to worry about and I need to figure out when that's the case. I think I experience a lot of anxiety just trying to sort out if I need to respond to something or not, and if so in what way. I think it's tempting to want to just "let go" of all of it, but that's how you get to the good samaritan dilemma. If that's not obvious, I can convert the soticism-by-proxy joke from my book to something horsey



  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillnDale View Post

    I think my biggest task right now (as some of you hit on) is that I need to not worry about things that aren't mine to worry about and I need to figure out when that's the case. I think I experience a lot of anxiety just trying to sort out if I need to respond to something or not, and if so in what way. I think it's tempting to want to just "let go" of all of it, but that's how you get to the good samaritan dilemma. If that's not obvious, I can convert the soticism-by-proxy joke from my book to something horsey
    For what it's worth, I agree. I have suffered depression so severe that I could not get out of bed for weeks. Not "meh, I don't feel like it today," but, "dear God if I get out of bed and take a shower I will fall down into a strangling mass of wet desperation and scream for help. And then I would disturb everyone who is trying to help me, so I better not do that, because I have hurt them too much already." I can tell you one thing. It DOES get better. It cannot help but get better. Your brain just can't stay that way forever. I will repeat. It DOES get better. I don't know when. But it will. I can promise you that. I will bet you that on my own soul, it will get better.



  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by mayhew View Post
    Not "meh, I don't feel like it today," but, "dear God if I get out of bed and take a shower I will fall down into a strangling mass of wet desperation and scream for help. And then I would disturb everyone who is trying to help me, so I better not do that, because I have hurt them too much already."
    Sucks, huh?

    I totally understand the added burden of not wanting to subject loved ones and coworkers to the misery. Feel free to look me up next time you find yourself muffling into your arm in the bottom of the shower
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  4. #44
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    HillnDale: I don't totally agree with what other posters are saying about just hit the 'ignore' button. What I think is most helpful for people who have the intelligence, perception, and wits to help face down a major social issue -- like you -- is to focus on an issue, just ONE issue, and stay alert to that one and figure out how you can help.

    Agree with yourself that you are not 24 people who can take on 24 different issues. You have a pact with yourself to channel your energy toward this one issue that won't smother you AND allows you to contribute to the improvement of society.

    Going thru the day putting your energy toward "ignoring' doesn't help. The world needs disciplined engagment,not dismissiveness. Teaching yourself how to filter, how to re-direct, and how to stay empowered when in draining situations, I think, is the key. You don't want people 'ignoring' you, so be sure you're not engaging in this yourself.

    It is true that you can't fix the issues you mentioned in one day, but, remember, over time, issues can get resolved. It takes practise to know how to pick battles, but if you do want to improve things, there will be battles. You'll learn your style and how to honor it.



  5. #45
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    Thanks for the input cyberbay. This is a really wise perspective and fits in a little better with my personal values than ignore. You're right, that's exhausting, too! And it leaves me feeling morally fraudulent, which isn't great. I thank Marcia Linehan (see posts above) for teaching me to consider the Middle Way I totally didn't know she wasn't just the president, but also a client.

    There are 3 forces at work at work right now:
    1) I'm starting to get desensitized to some of the things that initially bugged me. Desensitization, with people as with horses, is a double edged sword.
    2) Some things are still ephed up, and I can't change it and I don't like it, and grrr, and
    3) Other people are either passing through or coming out at the ranch as being bothered by some things as well and I feel like I'm a driving force in bringing about some gradual changes. So I realize that's part of my personal style to react to things I think are "wrong" but to advocate for slow rather than radical change. And I feel good about that. I keep repeating the line from the film version of Seabiscuit, "Brick by brick my citizens! Brick by brick."
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  6. #46
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    I too suffer from depresion and anxiety. Been riding for over 40 years and haven't put my foot in a stirrup in a year. I lost my horse in February of this year wich sent my depresion even deeper.

    Through loosing my horse and suffering depresion I have learned that as much as I want to I can't solve everyone elses problems; I have to work on my own problems and solve my issues first.
    I have to try the best I can to move forward. I have lost horses before but this horse was my heart horse. He was also the one that caused me seriouse injury almost five years ago. Yet I was able to get back on him. I didn't ride him much but I rode him. Then I lost him and now I just don't have the want to with horses but I still have the love. I know I need to move forward so just last night I went and looked at a few horses. Don't know if I will act on it or not.

    In my opinion you too need to think about solving your own issues and working on you and if working with horses is what helps you the most then continue to do so but try to find away to move forward.
    I have a journal that each night I write in and I set a goal for myself for the next day. That night I write if I was able to accomplish that goal, if I even tried or if I just sat and did nothing. Doing this has also helped me understand that I need to move forward. But take baby steps in doing so.

    I hope this helps.



  7. #47
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    Angry ARRRRGGGGHHHH everything sucks!

    I don't know what I clicked that made my whole post just evaporate. Blah.

    I'll try again:

    I'm totally on the verge. I'm lonely but feel completely alienated from the people around me. Work is all I have right now, which is NOT GOOD FOR ME and my coworkers are just ridiculous. I have quite a bit of responsibility and absolutely no authority which sets my coworkers up to not respect me and not take responsibility to get work done themselves. I've been told to "lead by example" but I feel like all that's accomplishing is training the other employees to expect me to take care of everything. There is more than I can do myself, I am really struggling to stay happy and friendly in this dynamic. At the end of the day it's bad for - and really just unfair - to the horses.

    If I have to find an encouraging way to say, "Hey, so the horses who aren't working today need to get turned out, kinda like how we did it yesterday" with the result being one coworker just wonders off without a word and the other sort of helps, but then doesn't clip (seriously, it's a clip. Either it's snapped or it's not. It's not something that's got a "quirk" or something a horse could undo) the chain to the gate and all the horses get out and careen around the ranch while there are clients riding and this kid has no reaction and no apparent understanding that he has done something wrong and potentially really dangerous - I dunno. Fine. The horses can just stay boxed. Because I guess I'm a total a-hole for wanting them turned out in the first place and then not thinking it's hilarious you supposedly grew up ranching but don't understand the importance of closing gates. Really the lack of initiative and willingness to self-direct basic, daily tasks is beyond stunning to me right now. Phew.

    I just feel totally demoralized by my job right now.

    On top of that, my physical symptoms were wince-ingly bad today. My head and back hurt so much I could barely think. I had really hoped this issue was better, but I don't see being able to work well at all if it's gonna be like this. It's just too much pain. And I'm pretty sure my brain is dying, as my memory is getting so crazy bad I'm genuinely scared. It impacts my work and I'm sure it negatively affects how my coworkers see me.

    I've been choking back tears all day and I STILL managed to be keep a smile on, crack a joke here and there, and be respectful to - lemme tell you how I really feel - THESE FREAKING JERKY STUPID-FACE MORONS I HAVE TO WORK WITH. I'm struggling to find a way to improve the situation without ending up the hired nag and tattle-tale I feel I've been asked to be.

    And then, AND THEN! this guy I met texted me and asked me to meet him for a drink, so I rallied and said I would. But turns out he wants ME to drive to a restaurant where he lives, which is an hour away. And I already drive 2 hours everyday. Not meet in the middle, not responsive to meeting up a different day and definitely not offering to hop on over this way. Am I crazy??? If I asked someone I just met to hang out I WOULD NOT expect them to drive an hour to come to me, and be out late, in the middle of their work week. I would not expect someone who doesn't even really know me to say,"Hey, what a fabulous proposition! Rather than make a mutually convenient PLAN, why don't I just drive an extra 2 hours with no notice because you're going to be bored this evening." I don't want to have unreasonable expectations or spend my life alone, but it's been a freakishly long time since I met a guy who will just make an effort. I know this seems really trivial, but when I got the text, initially I felt a little hopeful that I might have something nice in my day, and like I said, I've already been teetering on the brink.

    Done with everyone today. Can't see myself in tomorrow. I know the way out is to just keep plodding one foot in front of the other, but UGGHHH! I can't find anything to feel good about to make that seem like a worthwhile idea

    PS I'm so sorry gdolapp that you lost your heart horse. Have you looked any more horses yet?
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  8. #48
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    Sorry everything is so tough. Are you on any medications new/or old that might be attributing to the physical problems.

    I recently had vision loss, pain in neck and shoulders. That was on a Wednesday. I mentioned it on Friday. My doctor didn't lecture me. Just looked at me with wonder and said next time (if) go get it checked at the time.

    She calmly walked over with a piece of paper that earned me a cat scan and ekg. I felt really stupid.

    Sometimes its too overwhelming to go into a dr's office for me. I'm not advocating that you need a dr. Bodies show us reactions in mental and physical ways. I remind myself to try to recognize changes.

    My sympathies on your job. It really sucks that you are stuck in the middle. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Try to keep talking about it and don't let it eat you alive.

    PM if theres anything I can do.



  9. #49
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    Thanks for the kind post, Yamaha. Did your diagnostics reveal anything? I've had head and neck pain, sometimes with weird "greying" of my peripheral vision for, like, 17 years and have really had very little imaging ordered. Chiro and breast reduction surgery both really seemed to help but a long list of things could be culprits now. I don't know that there's a lot I can do about any of them immediately, although you are definitely tempting me to call in sick tomorrow and report to the doctor. I'm having a terrible time trying to get myself to cowgirl up and go in to work tomorrow.

    One of the triggers for sure is sleep issues. I often get anxious at night and can't fall asleep even if I'm exhausted. Right now is really bad. I don't want to sleep at all since next thing I know it will be morning and I will have to face the day, but physically I'm sleepy. I want to stretch the time out and have this quiet time to myself. When I start to drift off at night it's normal for my heart to start racing and I pop awake again. In the morning I have an awful time trying to wake up for the same reason - I don't want to face the day. Last night I just had nightmares all night about not being able to manage the barn well and the ensuing horse emergencies anyway. None of this is conducive to pain management.

    Another thing I really freaking hate right now: Everyday some stranger (visiting the ranch) will feel the need to tell me how great my life and job are. I know that's just their own thing and they are projecting innocently. No one wants to really wants to hear the grocery cashier answer, "Hi how are you?" with "I'm actively thinking about killing myself right now thanks for asking." And maybe, on the super-good days anyway, this job is as close as I will get to feeling content. But seriously, I don't tell others how to feel about their lives before I've even caught their names. My job is to give other people a break from their real life, and I'm happy to do that for them. I like that part. But MY real life is still happening. I'm not the one on vacation, right? Grrr.

    In the end, I think the alone-ness may kill me. This culture we live in can be sooo isolating and I'm not naturally very good at overcoming that. I hate, hate, hate that.
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  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillnDale View Post
    So I have Major Depressive Disorder, or whatever you want to call it, and have since about the 6th grade. It's the real deal.

    I've been around horses my entire life, riding regularly since I was 6, and the horse industry has been my primary occupation (to whatever extent I've been able to work) for the last several years. It's what I know, what I'm best at, and possibly even what I enjoy at least some of the time (to extent I enjoy anything ) Certainly, I believe horses saved my life during my teens.

    But I really struggle with aspects of this industry and often feel "complicit" in things that really bother me. I struggle with not always being able to live in line with my values at work, which is of course, really bad for depression.

    Does anyone else out there ever have this problem? I love horses and spending time doing the thing I'm most interested in, but horses seem to forever be misunderstood, mistreated, and general sources of heartbreak. I've been exposed to many different sides of the horse industry, and they all have pros and cons and usually it comes down more to individual care or callousness.

    Here are some examples from over the years of the kind of thing I'm talking about:
    1. General neglect, owners being unaware of issues or unaware of their importance which then plays out in my mind to the slow and painful breakdown of the animal (neglecting teeth, lax hoof care, improper or crappy feed).
    2. Ignorance of medically significant symptoms/behaviors (possible ulcers, lameness, moon blindness) which go untreated and sometimes result in the horse being punished (for being cranky, tripping, spooking).
    3. Overuse - over riding, over working, over racing, particularly very young or extremely old horses.
    4. Under use - sitting in a box stall for weeks or even more.
    5. In general taking short cuts on horsemanship, usually because good horsemanship was never bothered to be learned in the first place. Failing to see the "why" behind good horsemanship and how my recommendation should lead to less work and cost over time, not more.
    6. Bubble wrapping - spending ridiculous amounts of time, money and energy obsessing over the slightest deviations from perfection in soundness, health, etc., and indulging fears of what will happen if the horse is ridden, perhaps (gasp) at a trot, or (heaven forbid) in imperfect footing, and then given some (oh just nevermind!) turn-out time with another horse, until more problems are actually created.
    7. Misinterpreting horse psychology in general, leading to abuse. That's not to say I'm a mystical horse psychic, but it's amazing how often people make interpretations with are convenient for themselves or their egos at the expense of the horse's best interest or just reality.

    I have never had the money, influence, or even energy to be in charge of a barn or business, although I don't get the impression that alleviates these problems much. Trainers and vets all live at some extent at the mercy of their clients. And even when I've just ridden for pleasure, it's not like there's a magic bubble I can live in and do everything perfectly (ha.) and remain blissfully unaware of world's horseback riding dunderheads. So I feel stuck between doing what I know best and at least theoretically love, and getting a daily dose of learned helplessness aggravation where I feel I lack the power and control to stop things that hurt animals and bum me out.

    I really feel alone with this feeling most of the time, like the people around me either don't see the problems I'm seeing or aren't as bothered by them. Often these same people seem to care a lot or have really strong opinions about things I don't think matter much at all (saying things like "How could they blanket that horse?" or "not blanket that horse?!" in 45 degree weather and I'm thinking, "How can you you poke your horse in the nose all day for wearing a sour expression and acting pissy at mealtimes when you haven't checked him for ulcers?")

    Because these feelings can get really overwhelming for me, I'm not sure I'm even accurately evaluating how bad or important these problems are. I don't like feeling like I'm "looking the other way" all the time, but I also know I need to try to accept that life is messy, people are cruel (including me), and there's collateral damage around us all day long. I can't control it. But I struggle to feel good about myself or stay committed to living life.

    Anyone else?
    You just described my whole life....
    "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
    carolprudm



  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by mroades View Post
    You just described my whole life....
    LOL! er, I mean, sad

    Anyway, glad it's not just me.
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  12. #52
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    Wow...you ARE me!! I knew somebody else out there had the same issues...and like you, meds do NOTHING.



    "Right again. Anger is not a comfortable place for me at all. Bu-lech! And other people don't seem to care for it either. I'm still working on convincing myself that people may not like me angry in the moment, but may well respect me more, and will always prefer that to miserable, bitter, or passive aggressive and grumbling. I'm also still working on being skillful with anger. More respectable in how I convey it, if you will. More self-assured and intentional - less weepy or hysterical

    One of the most useful things I got out of my run with DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy, which was developed with Borderline PD in mind, but really great for ANYONE) is that each emotion has an associated action. Even though I don't feel comfortable expressing anger, when I feel it I know I'm being motivated to confront a problem, and if I have the power to do that, I can go ahead and confront (even if the way I finally do it is pretty mousey). It's interesting to note, as horribly uncomfortable as I was about my annoyance at some barn management issues at work last week, and as awkwardly as I did end up expressing it, and despite some defensiveness along the way from the other party/ies, ultimately I now have a pay raise and more authority at work to show for it and at the moment anyway, all those relationships are better, not worse, since I first posted. There is, of course, a limit to how much anger I can express to those I work for, so maybe I will return here to boil off the excess again in the future."
    "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
    carolprudm



  13. #53
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    Oh, meds do things, just not anti-depressive things

    Current status: still here but everything everybody else does is straight fingernails on slate. I'm not sure how to be nice at work at all tomorrow and that just makes me hate myself more :P

    Does anyone have any experience with radical experiments in treatment resistant depression?

    I was sort of interested in a scopolamine trial at one point, but then my doctor said he's pretty sure it just dries people out, which I then experienced as a treatment for nausea. Just another placebo rainbow it seems.

    I heard a guy, a patient, on NPR talking about a ketamine trial and he literally sounded giddy. And I'm thinking, "Hey, I know what that is. That's the tranq we have to lock up from the club kids!" But a legit tx for treatment-resistant depression? I dunno. But there are club drugs that recreational abuse has made illegal but "BITD" experimental psychiatrists had not just results with, but long term results after a single dose. I'm not trying to go off the deep end here. It just seems like giving me a drug that is physically addictive and causes serious withdrawl, in addition to general crappy side effects yet has no therapeutic benefit whatsoever, is kinda dumb. And may cause me to look elsewhere for help before I seriously cannot function AT ALL.
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  14. #54
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    I heard a story about ketamine and ketamine-like drugs on NPR last night too. http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012...in-connections Unfortunately those drugs are still in early testing. If you could be part of a drug trial you might be able to try it, but there's a 50% chance you'll get a placebo.

    Sounds promising, doesn't it, although the descriptions of the depressed shriveled neurons was, well....

    Sorry, I don't know what else to suggest other than the book I mentioned (written for people with treatment-resistant depression, by a psych at Duke).



  15. #55
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    Having so many similar issues this week HnD....I am glad we are not the only ones, but the isolation does get you, doesnt it?
    "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
    carolprudm



  16. #56
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    GAP, seriously it was on last night. That's kinda weird. It's something i heard several months back. I do appreciate the book rec. I have read it and many others. Most helpful has actually been a book titled Yoga for Depression and my own handouts and notes from doing dbt. Also something that helps me is survival stories, films or books, that don't address depression at all but are inspirational and promote perspective and perserverance.

    The isolation is horrendous. I keep trying to address it but it's just tough in a new place, especially working weekends.

    PS my boss just reminded me to submit insurance paperwork. I have a better portability plan right now, but it's still spendy and complicated by my move to a different region. Going on the ranch plan makes sense - except that i can't see myself working here past each day. And once gone I'll never get my old plan back. Ugh. I wish some kind person would take me to the kennels to meet the hunstman.
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  17. #57
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    I heard something about ketamine a few months ago too but last night the reporter specifically talked about a drug called GLYX-13 which has undergone preliminary testing and doesn't have ketamine's side effects.



  18. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillnDale View Post
    All I know about Philosophy I learned from Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar. Stoicism = you too can be un-unhappy I essentially appreciate your point of view and definitely think it has merit. I think it's probably useful for moody people to practice being very intentional about how and to whom they express their feelings. In general, I need to do any and all things which lower the intensity of my emotions....

    I've also read, and believe, that over time "stuffing" feelings and having them invalidated regularly, especially by important people is a major, if not THE major cause of mood disorders in the first place.
    I think the KEY difference is the locus of control.

    Having others to tell you to STFU, Man Up and Deal (or don't feel anything) is entirely different from telling yourself that you'd like to STFU, Man Up and Deal.

    I agree with you that a great deal of damage can be done when kids are asked to deny or suppress their feelings as opposed to manage them, or even use them for their proper purpose. IMO, the purpose of feelings is to tell us what we should work toward, what we should avoid and, with some maturity, what we can tolerate and survive.

    One of the very tough things about working on depression or any personality disorder as an adult is that you have to find a way to really like yourself, trust yourself and invest in yourself... at exactly the moment you are also realizing that the person that needs fixing is you!

    So the benefits of Stoicism (as danceronice has defined it): The Stoic gets to feel an enormous amount of power and reassurance in knowing that she/he is able to deal with the feelings connected to any situation. IMO, that's valuable. (IIRC, it's formally one of the goals of DBT.)
    The armchair saddler
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  19. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by grayarabpony View Post
    I heard something about ketamine a few months ago too but last night the reporter specifically talked about a drug called GLYX-13 which has undergone preliminary testing and doesn't have ketamine's side effects.
    GLYX-13, huh? Well, one of these days my number is gonna come up.

    I so appreciate anything and everything said to me on this thread. I know I seem like a total miserable sob, and believe me, my whining here greatly benefits other people who are not you (pl). Thanks and sorry.

    Good points about Stoicism and indirectly, Mindfulness. I was reflecting during my drive home on skills and strengths I could draw upon now. I realized little tricks like, "Recall the last time you felt happy" just don't work at all anymore. I'm over "happy" as a goal, anyway, and think that's a terrible bill of goods we've been sold in the USofA. But the last time I was honestly happy for more than an hour or two was in middle school, and by then the depression was already becoming an issue. I try to repeat in my head, all the time, over and over, "Go anyway", "Do anyway", "Act like the kind of person I would admire and like to be around", "Accept", "Surrender", "Allow."

    I thought about the isolation comment again from mroades. It really is a middle/long-term goal for me to be connected and accountable to someone/s. Right now I'm that lady no one would know was dead until by the smell. I really believe no amount of cowgirling up can make someone healthy who is that alone. We just aren't built for it IMHO. I'm pretty sure if I had children and a spouse I would find more purpose in my days and my obligations. As it is, why should I give a rat's ass? But who knows, maybe if I had a family I would just drive us all into a lake.

    But things are as they are and the change I need isn't available quickly. I felt really homesick, like really homesick, for the first time since I moved last night. Two things on my mind about that:
    1) It's hard right now to "believe" in the idea of being detached and allowing in a (sub)culture that is sooo laissez faire to the point of being flakey and irresponsible. I'm stumbling trying to find the middle ground with that.
    2) I desperately wish to be around a horse culture I relate to more. I may never be able to afford that again anyway, but gosh darnit, I sure would like to hand-gallop across country again and jump over something. Maybe even, gasp, with someone who knows what a hand-gallop is.

    Oh, and I almost forgot. Twice. The whole shrunken brain from the big D is freaky. I try to do things that will keep my mind sharp, but I think I'm losing. But I also wonder about the effects of pain killers (very low doses, but regularly and long-term) and benzos, as mentioned on another thread (extremely low-doses, bedtime, 3-4/wk). I know ambien makes me stupid and miserable. A small amount of Trazodone for a couple days made me a walking word-flubbering, car crashing zombie so I don't imagine these are doing me good, but with them, if I'm honest with myself, I'm much higher functioning than I have been in a long time.
    An auto-save saved my post.

    I might be a cylon



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