****This might not make much sense. It's a jumble of thoughts that I need to get out****
The other night Dirty and I were sitting on the couch watching TV, when a depression commercial came on. The people were holding up note cards saying things like "I see the world in black and white", "I'm empty inside", all the things I felt last year. Everything I was feeling last year was what was written on those cards. It really made me think and realize how low I was and how far I've come. I didn't intend on it, but I said out loud to Dirty "you know, I'm really surprised you didn't put me on medication." Obviously he couldn't force me to take any type of medication, but we made the decision, as a couple, that medication wasn't for me.
It's hard to be depressed. I didn't realize I was depressed until now. I knew I was sad and I was missing me mom, but I never thought I was "depressed". That word get thrown around so much, it almost has no meaning anymore. My mom suffered from depression from time to time and my older sister did, as well. Although, I'm sure my older sister's depression was caused more by drug use then anything else. My mom's might have been related to medication and her fibromyalgia. I'm not sure because my parents made sure my little sister and I weren't aware of that, even as adults. They didn't want us to worry about my mom, so they did their best to keep it from us. We knew she would spend days in her room, but always thought it was because of her pain. Anyway...not the point....
After I made that odd, random statement to Dirty, he looked at me and said "I knew how bad you were, but I also knew you were strong enough to fight it and win." Apparently I'm not as good as hiding things from him, as I thought I was. Not sure why I ever try, but I do. I'm glad he had faith in me, because I know I didn't. I know there were times when I felt so hopeless and stuck in a block hole that I couldn't even imagine ever getting out. But there were also days where I could see the sun from my black hole. I could go on and on about all the things I did when I was depressed that I wished I hadn't done, but what is that going to solve? What I do know is that right now, today, I feel SO much different then I did last year.
Last year putting up the Christmas tree and seeing my mom's ornament threw me into a crying fit in the bathroom by myself. This year, unpacking that ornament put a small smile on my face. I did get that "I wish mom was here" feeling, but it wasn't going to take me away on a 5 day depression vacation. I did have a small panic attack and almost dissolved into a puddle of tears when I wanted to put it on the tree and couldn't find it. Thankfully, Dirty found it and one of the kids had already put it on the tree. Then he moved it to the front with a light behind it so I could look at it. It was a very sweet gesture and one I appreciate more then I can say.
When I was telling Dirty how lost I was last year and how this year everything is so different, he said "you did a great job, hon! You will have bad days, and those are OK, but your good days outnumber your bad days. That's what you should be proud of." And ya know what? I am proud of that!
The last almost four years have sucked so much! I sometimes, can't believe it was me who was standing by my mom when she passed away. I can't believe I saw her last breath. I can't believe I was THERE when we made the decision to take her off life support. It's hard to wrap my brain around the thought that she is actually dead. I'm not sure that feeling will ever go away, and that's just fine with me. I don't think I ever want to be OK with her death in that way. I've always just wanted peace with the whole thing. And I think I've finally found it.
This year, my birthday won't be as much of a celebration as the years before, that's good. That means that I'm not trying to push away the sad thoughts away by having a huge party. Christmas will mean more because I'll be present through the whole thing. I'll be missing my mom, but it won't consume me like it has in the past. This past year, I've done a lot of healing. If I can see the difference, that means that my hopes of wanting to smile with my eyes, has actually happened. I'm not faking it anymore. When I get sad, I sit with it. I don't try to push it away, in the hopes that it'll just leave me alone. I don't push my purple gorilla away, I sit with her and let her hold me when I need it. I allow myself to feel the pain, but I also allow myself to feel the love from everyone around me.
I will always miss my mom, no doubt about that, but life is brighter, today. I came a long way in the past few years. I may have taken the long way to get here, but I had to do it that way. That way was my way. I had to fall to my knees from the pain in order to be strong enough to walk through the grief. If there is anything I've learned from this, it's that it is OK to be picked up by my family and friends. Just because I'm "the strong one" doesn't mean I don't need help. I do need help and that help comes in many forms.