Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The Week of Reflection Has Been Indefinitely Postponed

Normally the week between Christmas and New Year's is when I do my best thinking. It's a kind of limbo in which the old year is kind of over, with the big bang of Christmas - but the new has not begun. I look back, consider what I did well and what I could have done better, and think about what I'd like to achieve, and who I'd like to be in the New Year.

Yeahno, not happening this year. My one reflection is more of a confession, one which will come as no surprise to those who know me personally: the truth is I spent much of the latter half of 2013 down the rabbit hole of depression, my old nemesis. The further truth is, I'm not out yet.

Depression, as you may have noticed, is not great for blogging. I hate the sound of my own voice and everything I type sounds insipid, so after a while I just stop. Add to that, I'm just about as broke as it's possible to be and still be under a roof, so basically anything I do that doesn't make money seems self-indulgent. There are a lot of heads depending on me to keep that roof up there. Not even sure how pottery is going to fit in, if I'll have to get a job...it's all too much to think about.

My husband and nephew went out of state to my in-laws for the holiday. I had planned to go as well, but then the ice storm took out our power around 11 pm on the 23rd, and I felt someone should stay with the pets and the house, to guard against frozen pipes and other calamities. I also felt there was no point all of us being cold. I'm sort of a grinch even in the best years, so missing out on all the Christmas festivities was no hardship; in fact in other years I have thought of a couple of days alone in my house as my Christmas gift to myself. This year, sitting in the increasingly cold dark, wondering when or if the heat and light would return, I thought I had inadvertently created my internal world on the outside.

But then I saw the flashing yellow lights go by around 9 pm. Unfortunately for my corny little metaphor - but very fortunately for myself and the four-legged ones - CMP had come to my neighborhood. As so often happens in this mental state, I sort of hate myself for even having depression: tens of thousands of people in Maine are still in the cold dark, what have I got to be depressed about?

In what might be a positive sign, I spent the day cleaning the house, which had gotten into a dreadful state. My husband and nephew are both slobs, and my choices are a) clean up after them; b) nag them daily; or c) just leave it. I lost energy to fight that battle sometime after Thanksgiving. It's clean now, though, and it feels so much better.

Not sure I'll post this; if I do it's unlikely that I'll leave it up long, because as soon as I re-read it I'll delete it as despicable whining. Or whinging; the British way sounds even lower. I still have a few days to fight my way out; I'd hate to start 2014 this way.

13 comments:

Sue Pariseau Pottery said...

Uh Oh... post up long enough for me to read and comment. Was thinking of you earlier today while listening to the news reports of ongoing power outages throughout Maine. Glad to hear you've got power back.

On the topic of depression... I'm sure no words left in a blog comment will be super helpful. But you will be in my thoughts.

Caring thoughts heading your way. xo

ShellHawk said...

I agree with Sue: nothing a blog comment can express will make a difference. That said, it must be awful. I can't even imagine how that must be for you. I can only offer my hugs from afar. :)

Sheri Bare said...

Lori...glad to hear your electric is back. A few friends up there have posted photos of the ice. As beautiful as it is, it is equally damaging.
Sorry to hear about your state of mind...and your economic hardships.
Glad this was up long enough for me to read. I have missed your quick humor, and always helpful pottery comments.
My thoughts will be with you.
Sheri

Sheri Bare said...

Lori...glad to hear your electric is back. A few friends up there have posted photos of the ice. As beautiful as it is, it is equally damaging.
Sorry to hear about your state of mind...and your economic hardships.
Glad this was up long enough for me to read. I have missed your quick humor, and always helpful pottery comments.
My thoughts will be with you.
Sheri

Kathy Catlin said...

Lori, it's good to tell the truth and be real...Keep looking up and keep moving. Glad you stayed with the pets- they need you and you need them.
-Kathy

S. Dean said...

De-lurking long enough to send some funk busting energy your way. Keep pluggin' and know that your'e in our thoughts.

Donna said...

Wish I couldn't relate, babe. Throw some dinner plates, go for a hideously long walk (camera in hand), watch old eps of Star Trek -- those always help me anyway.
Cheers!

Lori Watts said...

Donna - So funny, I have been watching Star Trek: TNG. It helps me turn my brain off for a while.

smartcat said...

I'm so sorry you are in the downers.....this time of year in the cold and dark does not help. It must have been a relief to have the electrics come on.

There is nothing wrong with spending Christmas alone. It was a great comfort to be alone on the day after P. died. I would go out Christmas Eve and the day after but Christmas was my day. After Proge started living here we have kept it a low key day with good food.

I hope, hope, hope that you will find a way to keep doing your pottery. I have to tell you that the mug you sent has become a personal critique success. Those are the ones that seem to automatically find their way to your hand. I am drinking my tea from it as I write.

There is so much more I could say, just know that my thoughts are with you!

Lori Buff said...

Depression is an illness, it's a chemical imbalance. You have as much "right" to be depressed as someone else has to being diabetic.
I hope you feel better soon.

June Perry said...

Sending you a very big cyber hug Lori. Glad you had the courage to share your feelings; and that I and other could share in your honest feelings. I hope that putting all those feelings into words can help you break through the mean reds of this depression; or at least turn the into a lesser case of the blues, that will pass quickly!

autistwriter said...

Just hauling out of the black pit myself. Sometimes putting one foot in front of another is the only achievement possible.

Sending some pottery love your way...

Linda Starr said...

Lori I missed this post, hope you are feeling better, the holidays are a hard time for me, I've spent many Christmas's alone or without family near; one time better alone than not, (which later I came to know).

I'm impressed you cleaned house as that's the last thing I can or want to do.

Sometimes as low as I go the thing which gets me through is an idea for a pot; I'm thankful for that. Worries of any kind only seem to worsen the doldrums, I know about those, I can write this now but it doesn't help me knowing it when I'm feeling low

When I was much younger I used to say to myself I'll crack the imaginary whip over my own back to keep myself going, it seems it might have been easier then but I know I'm wrong about that, anyway I'm thinking of you and wishing you well.

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