Once more into the fray

What is it about my brain chemistry that means as soon as the going gets tough, my brain packs up and decides to take a vacation in the Bahamas without me? Here’s hoping that it at least sends me a nice postcard or something.

Yes, my good friend depression is back. Yes, I have been pretending that it isn’t back for a month or so now – having been here before and done this a time or five, I know the signs, but I’ve been ostriching in the vain hope that I was mistaken and that it was all going to go away.

Yeah, so we all know that’s not going to happen, right?

When you go to the doctor to talk about one thing, sit down and burst into tears about something completely different, it’s a good indication that all is not hunky-dory in the world according to Claire Louise Kemp. When the doctor then flat-out orders you off work for a week without you even suggesting it, that’s a good indication that perhaps you are not imagining the situation.

So it’s once more onto the carousel of counsellors and yes/no to anti-depressants and bursting into tears over the stupidist things, and generally being a bitch to my nearest and dearest, whilst pretending that actually all is really well with my world and putting a brave face on it and…


You see, people never know really what to say when you say you’re depressed. “There there, it will all be better soon” is just as irritating as “oh, stop making a fuss, it can’t be that bad” which is about on a par with the blank silence you get from some people, or the forced attempt at normalcy other people prefer to adopt. Which is nothing to knowing that the people who love you most are sitting there chewing their insides out not knowing what to do to help you.

That last is perhaps the worst part about the whole thing. Telling friends and family “here we go again” and watching their faces fall just a little bit. Coupled with the knowledge that zillions have it so much worse so why is it affecting you like this?

I don’t write this for sympathy. Sympathy is one thing guaranteed to have me dissolving into a piteous puddle of tears, and I so don’t look attractive when I cry. I write this because my first reaction with everything is to write it down and see what it looks like on the page. I write this because y’all here in blogland deserve to know what is going on in my delightfully f**ked up head. I write this because why is this part of my life any less blog-worthy than the other random crap that keeps happening to me? I write this because not being honest about things is what tends to get me in trouble in the first place. I have this bad habit of not telling people when things are bugging me, then looking all surprised when everything blows up in our faces, going “you never noticed?”

Plus I always did do my best writing when depressed.

I freely admit I’m doing the British thing of presenting a stiff upper lip to the world and not letting on to what I am really thinking. It’s happening. It’s freaking me out. I’m worried. I’m scared. But I know I will get through this. I wish it wasn’t happening. It would honestly be nice to go for a few months without some different part of me breaking. But having been here before enough times to recognise what’s happening in my head, I know I’ve had it worse. I’ve done the thing I always said I’d do in this situation and asked for help before I started drowning.

Now I just need to be patient while that help does what it does and I need to let my friends and family in past my mile-high walls.

I need to keep writing and I need to keep laughing at the world because the day I don’t glory in how truly bizarre and wonderful our little blue planet is, that is the day you really should panic. See, I’m not that worried about me. A little bit concerned and sorry for myself right now, but not overly worried. I’m scrappy. I’m cute. I’m Cas. No neurochemical glitch is going to stop ME from having fun.

Now if you will excuse me I am off to drink yet another bucket of tea and tuck into the mountainous pile of trashy chick lit I have piled around my bed against just such a situation. Times like this, you need to revisit some old favourites so I think a Georgette Heyer marathon, interspersed with some Jill Mansell for the modern take on things, is just what the doctor ordered when she said “take time to look after yourself”. I might mix in some Wyndham, Asimov, Gibson and Stephenson to stop my brain from pouring out of my ears from an overdose of pink fluff, but we’ll see how it goes.

Love, Cxxx 🙂

9 thoughts on “Once more into the fray

  1. I sympathize, as one who also has erratic brain chemistry and wouldn’t stop taking antidepressants if you paid me. It’s really tough dealing with depression. It would be nice if the doctors could wave a magic wand over us and know exactly which drug would solve the problem, but unfortunately it’s still just trial and error. I’ve been debating lately whether I need a higher dose of my medicine or if I should try something else entirely, because I know I’m not accomplishing as much as I should — but at the same time, I’m afraid to end up worse than I am now. It’s unfortunate that there’s no easy answers to be had, for me or for any of us.

    At least there are lots of fun distractions to be had. I recommend you try Beth Kendrick’s novels if you haven’t yet. I particularly like Fashionably Late, which is lots of fun.

    Best wishes…

  2. Oof! I sympathise and empathise with you right now. I ended up shoved onto medication and thrown into counselling a little earlier in the year after doing the whole ‘just get on with it’ thing for years. Unfortunately I don’t have much else to offer, but I know the blank expressions and the ‘oh not again’ looks that people tend to give in these situations, so I know that having someone say ‘Yeah, I know how that is’ can be really reassuring. Ah well, chin up, we’re British! 😉

  3. That’s right. You show that neurochemical glitch who’s the boss of you!! NO reason why Cas can’t have all the fun and glory!

  4. so which one did I do? the blank face? I’ve been trying to do the act like normal while thinking of something to ‘cheer you up’. That’s a bit patronising though isn’t it.

  5. I always find that the only people who can deal with me and understand me are those who’ve experienced depression themselves – most people as you’ve said just don’t know how to react and how to handle me when I’m “not doing well” – and I’ve let my depression take too many friends away from me – I misread whether people are ready to deal with me, and I open a crack in that facade too early… then they bolt and run.

    Some of the things you’ve written echo strongly in me and with the goings on in my head (although not the desire to read “chick lit” – give me a good Tom Clancy/Clive Cussler/etc adventure thriller any day!)

    Just remember this, you’re not the only one suffering with this, and you’re not alone. Some of your friends will (hopefully) care enough to stand by you through this difficult time.

  6. I’m thoughtless, absent-minded and insensitive but not uncaring. I took most of last week off work with a form of depression myself. Sometimes it hits me for a week or so and then I claw my way back to normality.

    I can empathise with you, but of course it’s a truly personal issue which I can’t help you with. You have my best wishes and I hope you work your way through it and out into the daylight the other side.

  7. Thank you everyone.

    We do seem to be a gloomy lot here on Bright Meadow at the moment. Is it that I write such uniquely depressing stuff, or generate a vibe that brings people out of the woodwork, or just that a general malaise is pervading the internet at the moment?

    Not that it’s a bad thing, but – well, I kinda was hoping that there were people out there having a good time, restoring my faith in humanity, that kinda thing!

    *hugs* to the lot of you regardless 😀

  8. It was not until I read this that I remembered I did the pill thing i my mid twenties. I was brought up in the “just deal with it” school. I convinced myself that I was a calm and rational being who never got flustered. I was in fact a bag of nerves that worried and fussed.

    The final episode was in my late 40’s when I became a sleep deprived zomby because of a bullying boss. He God bless him recognised his contribution to the sorry state I was in and paid for a course of Hypnotherapy.

    I hope thatmy nearest and dearest think it was worthwhile. I certainly feel better and now have the tools to recognise the onset of an episode and to deal with it.

    PS I think the space bar on my laptop has got the downs – I have lostcountofhowmanywordsstartedasone in thisshortpiece.

  9. Hey, like I said, not gonna do ‘there there’ at you, or run a mile. Just be ruthlessly practical. Well done for letting us know.

    Tea and cakes? You can mock my sunburn and look at amusing pictures of survey, supper in a roundhouse and look at shiny results 😀

    I’m still not sure about saturday night…. Spiky Sam is having a birthday bash and he came out for mine so I kinda owe him one…. not that you aren’t my priority, ma cherie, but debts are debts and I’m still a northerner at heart…. especially for social obligations!! Argh. I’ll talk to Matt and try to figure something out…

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