Category Archives: Depression
I’ve been having trouble sleeping. Ironically, I think the culprit is my anti-depressant. The medicine that is supposed to make me less depressed is keeping me from sleeping which is making me more depressed.
I decided that I needed to cut back on my caffeine. I like my Diet Coke, though. So, I started chugging Caffeine-Free Diet Coke. The problem is that most restaurants don’t carry that. So, I was thrilled to see that several of my favorite restaurants carry Coke Zero.
Now, I’m not sure what possessed me to think that Coke Zero would be helpful. For some reason, I got the insane idea that the “Zero” meant there would be zero calories, zero caffeine, and zero aspartame. Healthy, right?
I did not connect the fact that I was completely wired at 2:00 AM every night to the fact that I was ingesting Coke Zero like it was water.
One day, I was getting a can from the machine at school, and someone passing said, “Need a caffeine hit for the afternoon?”
“No. As a matter of fact, I’m trying to avoid caffeine,” I said.
“Oh, that doesn’t have caffeine?”
“Of course not. That’s why it’s called Coke Zero.”
That got me thinking…
So, I consulted my friend Google later that afternoon. Here is what I found regarding the comparative caffeine levels:
O.K. Then why the heck is it called “Coke ZERO”?!!!!!!
Because there is zero sugar in it.
Of course, there is zero sugar in Diet Coke as well. Apparently, the difference between the two is that the Coke Zero is supposed to taste more like Regular Coke due to a “different flavor base” from Diet Coke. Hence, the “Zero”. That makes sense, right?
From now on, just call me “Beyonce Zero”. We’re practically the same except for every part of us that’s not the same.
Works for me.
One of my depression-combatting strategies is to watch hours of sitcoms with my bulldog, Wonderbutt, snoring and farting in my lap. I’m not really sure if it’s the sitcoms, Wonderbutt, or the inhalation of gases that actually help, but I’ve been too lazy to change any of the variables in the attempt to conduct a scientific investigation. The most recent sitcom therapy has been “Modern Family” for the sole reason that one of the networks has been running “Modern Family” marathons during the past couple of weeks. However, they alternate them with “NCIS” marathons, which seem to have the opposite effect on my temperament. I tell you, this T.V. watching can be a real roller-coaster for the psyche.
The other problem with watching “Modern Family” is that I’m not sure it’s actually improving my mood, so much as altering my personality. After watching for a few hours, I have a keen desire to go to dinner with the gay brother that I don’t have or to call Claire and challenge her to a battle of the neurotic perfectionists. Even worse, I start speaking in a thick Colombian accent, saying things like, “Aiii! After all those years with Peg, who knew Al Bundy could be so sweet and charming?” I have a tendency to immerse myself in fictional worlds, in case you couldn’t tell.
These issues could be avoided, of course, if someone just decided to make a sitcom out of my own life. I already mentally explain things to a camera-man half the time, anyway, so putting an actual camera in front of me would not be a stretch. Then I would could watch my own show for hours with Wonderbutt snoring and farting on my lap, and become myself – which would be a welcome change.
Or I might become Wonderbutt.
Some might say that would be an improvement.
Depending on your source, “ludicrosity” may or may not be a word. I honestly thought I made it up, but it’s littered all over the web – which just goes to show you that it’s impossible to be original any more.
Ever since I realized that my anti-depressant was making me happier than everyone else, then found out that someone obviously switched it with a placebo right at the moment that I was about to receive some not-so-anti-depressing news, I have been experiencing weird moments of ludicrosity that I decided I should start chronicling. If you don’t think they are funny, don’t tell me. Because I will start crying.
I had the above online exchange with a student who kept posting on Edmodo without following our class rules.
Kind of begs the question, “Why the heck did you put a door there if it CAN NEVER BE OPENED?!!!!”
So many things to love about this app. The price, the name of the company, the fact that 116 people have rated it already…
This is what happens when you buy a cheap bluetooth keyboard; they give you instructions that were apparently written by the student featured in my first image…
And finally, I think this was actually meant to be funny. I hope.
It turns out my anti-depressant only works when there is nothing to be depressed about. Which seems kind of ineffective. I mean, if your medication isn’t going to help you look on the bright side of things when you find out that your dog probably needs $1500 surgery – TWICE – then, really, what’s the point of taking it?
As I mentioned in the last post, Wonderbutt has been limping. Cap’n Firepants and I could not agree on which leg was hurt, which was embarrassing to admit to the vet. We were pretty sure it was a back leg, but the darn dog has two of those. I was certain he was favoring the left one, and the Cap’n was equally sure it was the right one. It turned out that I was right. And I’ve never been so depressed about being correct. Because the Cap’n was right, too, apparently. According to the vet, it appears that Wonderbutt tore the ligaments in both of his rear knees.
So, first of all, I didn’t even know that Wonderbutt has knees. I still can’t find them. Who’s the stupid idiot who decided to give dogs knees? Next, you’re going to tell me they have elbows, too.
Secondly, the vet does not know this for sure. So we must pay $500 to be certain with X-rays that must be done while Wonderbutt is anesthetized. (Apparently, the vet is doubtful that Wonderbutt will be relaxed enough to get good X-rays done while he is awake.) Then, we get to fork out the $3000. Which should be very interesting since we don’t happen to have that in our Swiss bank account right now.
I came home from the vet, and decided that the best way to deal with this information would be to take a nap.
Another astounding revelation – naps at 10:30 in the morning really don’t help to combat the threat of oppressive veterinary bills and a hobbled bulldog.
In the meantime, our daughter, Dimples (who has a “touch” of scoliosis, and needs to go to a specialist so we can get more specific bad news) is alive with the Christmas spirit. She is cheerfully dancing around the house, decorating, and delighting at placing ornaments in unusual spots for me to find. Her birthday happens to be in a few days, so nothing is going to dampen her good cheer.
And my mother-in-law called this morning to see when we were going to pick her up for Thanksgiving. Which we did. Yesterday.
We all find our own ways of avoiding reality, I suppose.
So, I finally seem to have found a great anti-depressant that allows me to feel somewhat sane and fairly happy. The only problem is that it seem to have the side-effect of making every other adult I know completely despondent. And, you know, it’s not really any fun being happy when you’re the only one smiling.
I can’t find any warnings about this on the paperwork provided by the pharmacy. But it’s clear to me that, while my medication is helping me, it is slowly depleting the jubilance levels of the rest of society. Before I started taking this medicine, everyone was way happier than me. Now, suddenly, these same people are cheerless and glum – and peering at me very suspiciously. It’s enough to make me go back to being depressed.
Even my dog, Wonderbutt, glares at me like I’m insane for experiencing any kind of joy.
I feel like a Tigger in a world of Eeyores.
Except Tigger wouldn’t care.
So, maybe a better analogy would be that I’m a Piglet who took one sip too many of Tigger’s 5 Hour Energy Drink. Now, instead of being debilitatingly anxious about everything, I am anxious that I am debilitatingly happy about everything that no one else seems to find remotely joyful.
I am depressed that I am not depressed.
Men, the next time you feel inclined to give a woman a compliment and mention pregnancy in the same sentence – don’t. I don’t care how staggeringly laudatory the words sound in your head. Just. Keep. Your. Mouth. Closed.
We all know the old adage, “Don’t ever ask someone when her baby is due even if she looks like she’s pregnant because she may not be. She may just have an unfortunate deposition of her weight, and then you look like an idiot and she hates herself and really hates you and it just causes an overall environment of ill-will.” ~ Ben Franklin in Poor Richard’s Almanac (I think I suspect why Richard needed some sympathy – and it wasn’t because he was poverty-stricken.)
But that’s not the only way to get your teeth knocked out.
Let’s just say, for example, you announce to a woman you haven’t seen for three months, “Wow, you don’t look like you just had a baby!”
And she didn’t. Just. Have. A. Baby.
She had a baby exactly 10 years and 8 months ago.
I have it on very good authority that said woman will be slightly confused for a moment, then say, “Thanks.” You, the man, will walk off feeling quite proud that you just made someone’s day.
Oh, you made it all right.
You made it miserable.
Because the woman then thinks, “What did he mean by that? Does he say that to every woman he hasn’t seen for three months? Does he say that to every woman? I did gain weight over the summer. So, is he saying I don’t look like I just had a baby because I look like I’m about to have a baby? Oh. My. God. That man just called me FAT. And it’s 7:15 a.m. on the first day of school, and I think I might just need to find a closet somewhere and start crying.”
At least, that’s what I imagine she would be thinking. I wouldn’t know.
Well, it’s been awhile since I’ve regaled you with one of my self-diagnoses. My most recent one is so depressing, I hesitate to share it with you. But then I thought I should probably warn you about it because you might have it, too.
Most of my self-diagnoses are the result of in-depth internet research. But this one actually came about during an impromptu dinner date with my husband. Technically, it’s the waiter’s fault.
“Do you think he’s from Australia?” Cap’n Firepants asked me after the waiter left with our drink order.
“I’m not sure. It kind of sounds like it, but it’s not quite there,” I said. I am the authority in the family on accents because I am the only person who has traveled to three other countries – four if you include the time I watched fireworks in international waters between the U.S. and Canada. Of course, none of those countries has been Australia, but I did watch Crocodile Dundee and its abysmal sequel.
Throughout the meal, we kept whispering about the waiter’s accent. Finally, after he said, “Have a good evening, mates,” and after I had polished off a top-shelf margarita which made me feel completely unabashed about inquiring into our waiter’s private life, I said, “Are you from Australia?”
To which he replied, “No.” I grinned at the Cap’n. I’m always right.
“But I do have an Australian accent,” the waiter admitted.
He went on to explain that he is from Texas. And has no relatives from Australia. However, a few years ago, he was in a horrible car accident. And when he woke up, and finally started speaking again, he suddenly had this accent. And he’s had it ever since.
“It’s called Foreign Accent Syndrome,” he informed us.
“That. Is. So. Cool!” I exclaimed. Minus the injuries and hospital stay, of course.
Now, it’s quite possible, indeed almost certain, that our waiter was feeding us a pile of bull honkey. But it got me thinking about one of my own neurological problems.
Periodically, my Inner Voice speaks Jeff Foxworthy. It’s well-documented. I’ve been wondering about the cause of this, and now I know.
At some point, Jeff Foxworthy obviously clunked me hard on the head.
What’s depressing is that I didn’t get an Australian accent. And what’s even more depressing is that when I looked up Foreign Accent Syndrome on Wikipedia, it said this, “Thus, the perception of a foreign accent is likely a case of pareidolia on the part of the listener.”
Basically implying that the person who is listening (me) to the speaker (me) is off her rocker.
I guess that isn’t all that surprising.
You’re Either Part of the Problem or All of the Problem or You Could Be the Solution. Or a Chemical Mixture. I Never Really Understood Science. Or Math.
So, it’s finally come to this – a bittersweet day on which I have decided to make a confession of a deep, dark secret that I’ve been hiding for months.
I decided to “come out” finally as a service to my readers who may be experiencing this same issue. It helps to know that you’re not alone. At least, it helps if you’re selfish like me and are comforted by the fact that others are suffering along with you. And if there are no readers experiencing this same issue, then I guess I am alone. And that kind of bites, but oh well. I’m sure you have your own ways of suffering.
So, here’s the thing. I now have over 1000 subscribers. Woohoo. I mean, awesome, right?
But less people read my blog per day now than they did a month after I started. Two years ago. A lot less.
Basically, let’s say I used to have 30 or 40 daily readers out of every 50 subscribers.
Now I still have about 30 or 40 readers.
Okay, so, somehow I managed to miss having to take Statistics in college, but I’m pretty sure that a graph of my numbers would look equivalent to one reflecting the success of Lindsay Lohan’s career over the last decade.
And I have way more fun and talent than Lindsay Lohan, so that hardly seems like a fair comparison.
Upon reflection, I’ve decided that the reason for this preposterous report of my readership could have one of the following causes:
Uno.) 99% of my blog subscribers are spammers who don’t actually read anyone’s blog, but apparently make tons of money off of pretending they do.
B.) Jon Stewart is screwing up my blog stats on purpose so I will spend less time blogging and more time
stalking writing love letters to him.
III.) WordPress hates me.
Four.) People read one post, and think that I am fabulous, then realize that my writing sucks and stop reading. But they are too lazy to unsubscribe.
Quintuplets.) The only people who are able to stumble across my blog are the ones who search for it by typing in, “my pants won the spelling bee?” And, let’s face it, usually the shoes win the spelling bee, not the pants.
Obviously it’s B.
Now I have to think of a solution. Certainly, I cannot allow Jon Stewart to completely change my life – unless there is some kind of financial profit involved on my part. In the meantime, I must keep blogging, if only to prove that I can persevere through these difficult and trying times of unsatisfactory blog statistics.
If Jon Stewart is deliberately tanking your statistics, too, then I suggest you look to me as a role model and follow my lead in this. Don’t stop blogging. And don’t devote any more time than usual to
stalking sending him communications of an admiring yet somewhat admonishing-him-for-not-paying-any-attention-to-you nature. Trust me; it doesn’t work.
As Dory from Finding Nemo says, “Just keep blogging and stop looking at your stupid blog stats because either Jon Stewart, the NSA, or terrorists are screwing them up.”
Or something like that.
I blame it all on Jon Stewart. I mean, the man leaves for a 3 month vacation, and of course my newish anti-depressant, which was working just fine for three weeks, abandons me at the same exact time. This can not be a coincidence.
I’m sure my abysmal attitude has nothing to do with my Groundhog Day week of chauffeuring my daughter back and forth from synchronized swimming practice as she prepares to compete at Nationals.
Or with the fact that my hair stylist, who told me in no uncertain terms 5 years ago that he would not give me bangs, inexplicably and with no warning, suddenly gave me a Frankenstein cut yesterday.
My less-than-positive reaction to both of those incidents is a symptom of the problem – not the cause.
No, it’s definitely Jon Stewart’s absence. And even though John Oliver is a worthy replacement, he is not Jon. I mean, for crying out loud, he has an “h” in his first name.
And I’m not the only one effected. The Bloggess is also missing him. Though she didn’t say it in so many words. Actually she didn’t say it in any words. But she’s depressed, too, and I’m pretty sure that’s the reason.
I saw this video on an education blog today, of all places, and because the world revolves around me, I realized the song writer was actually speaking to me when he wrote it, although it appears it was written at least 4 years ago so that would be an amazing example of prescience that should probably be investigated by scientists, or at least by Anderson Cooper.
As I am a generous person, I thought I would share it with those of you who might also be dealing with the gaping hole that Jon Stewart’s dereliction of duty may have left in your life.
So Many Ways To Die
so many ways to die
so many ways to stay alive
but if you wouldn’t mind to wait a while
you could give another day a try
you tell me all that you cherished is through
well that’s not true it isn’t true
it isn’t true
i read it in the news it is but really isn’t you
you are exactly who you choose
you’re only lying to you
so many ways to think
how differently we interpret the brink
between the side of life worth living
and the point at which you’re better off to sink
so many ways to laugh
chortle chuckle giggle cachinnate guffaw like william howard taft
science has proven it’s correlated
with the number of days your life will pass
so many ways to die
so many different ways to lie
should a community allow
or should society continue to deny
what could i say where do you go
what could i do what could i know
so many different lives
so many different ways to hide
but if you open your shutters
you might find the joy that only lives outside
so many ways to dance
so many different meanings for glance
but you only get a few if you keep staring at your shoes
you will miss every single chance
three thousand different ways
they could’ve rearranged your dna
but I believe just for today that
you can conquer your affliction of the brain
I finally solved the mystery of what’s using up all of the RAM in my brain, rendering it completely useless for ordinary tasks like processing words and creating pointless bulleted lists of what I desperately need from the grocery store.
Someone has apparently messed with my system preferences and over-upgraded my anti-virus program resulting in my brain spending more time on defending me from highly contagious infections than reminding me to perform simple tasks – such as putting a memory stick into my camera before I take 200 pictures and realize that none have been saved.
I was thinking that getting older was the culprit, but a rare moment of self-awareness the other day revealed the true reason I can’t remember a darn thing anymore.
I was supervising recess, and a student came up, rubbed his palm on my arm, and asked me if he could go to the bathroom.
“Sure,” I said automatically.
What I was thinking was, “I need to douse my left arm in hand-sanitizer as soon as I get back to my classroom.”
About 2 minutes later, a parent walked up to me, introduced himself, and shook my hand.
“Hello,” I said automatically.
Thinking, of course, “And I will use my right hand that man just shook to spread the hand-sanitizer all over my left arm.”
And then someone asked me a question.
And a small bit of panic began to rise because I now had two things to remember and one thing to respond to all at the same time and apparently two is my max amount for multi-tasking and my brain completely freezes if required to perform three functions at the same exact time.
I don’t even remember the question. It was about that moment that a random window opened in my brain, informing me that this is exactly why I am a basket case while simultaneously debating whether the person who asked me the question got close enough that I would now need to sanitize my entire body just to be on the safe side.
Later that day, I informed my husband of my great revelation.
“I can’t remember anything because I’m too busy trying to remember which parts of my body need to be disinfected every time someone comes near me. I’m seriously creating little mental maps in my brain with place-markers on every spot that has been touched since the last time I expunged all of the germs.”
Despite the fact that I make astounding statements like this every single day, my husband seemed a bit concerned by the gravity of the situation.
“That’s weird,” he said. “You seriously need to stop watching those reruns of Monk.”
“Oh God,” I thought. “I never thought of that. CAN YOU IMAGINE ALL OF THE BACTERIA LIVING ON OUR REMOTE CONTROL?!!!”