I was also going downhill. I describe depression as “being sucked into a black hole.”
Stupid Cancer. I was still grieving my mother’s death.
Stupid Dementia. Watching someone suffer with dementia is similar to having the hairs plucked out of your head one by one.
Tears and More Tears
Between my mother dying and Dad’s decline (and most likely being early post-menopausal due to surgery) I became more and more depressed. I was not a particularly emotional person in the past, but now I cried at the drop of a hat.
Grief, it rips at your soul. When someone dies, we grieve, sometimes for years. When someone is slowing slipping away from you mentally and physically, the grief is drawn out, slowly, repetitively.
I lay in bed several nights, sobbing away. My poor husband did not know what to do.
A sad movie or TV show – my makeup streaked down my cheeks.
Those sappy commercials about homeless dogs – sad, sad, sad.
When I had been depressed previously I took St. John’s Wort, which was just enough to keep me on an even keel. But not anymore.
The Breaking Point
One day at work my computer wouldn’t boot up. My eyes teared up. A co-worker walked in and said, “Are you okay”? I said yes, but I knew this was not normal, I was not okay.
(Looking back, it is ironic that technology would be the last straw.)
Finally, I went to the doctor and told her what was going on. They called it “situational depression” and prescribed me antidepressants.
Why had I waited so long?
Moving out of The Plaza
We let The Plaza know we would be terminating his apartment lease. We had to pack up his remaining earthly possessions, other than the few clothes and items he could have in the nursing home.
I joined up with Terri and Patty on a crisp autumn Saturday to pack. One very odd situation we found was quite a few end rolls of toilet paper. I wondered why he would hide them in the back of the cabinet. I later remembered a time he ran out of toilet paper, and I had to run to the store to get him a package. This was his way of making sure he never ran out!
By the middle of Saturday, I had a pounding headache. I am not prone to migraines, but I was nauseous and feeling sick. Stress.
My sisters had to take a break and run an errand, so I decided to visit a local craft show. There was a man there giving massages as a fund-raiser, $1 a minute. I forked over $20 and had the best head and neck massage ever. It nearly took away my headache. A little self-care will go a long way.
CALL TO ACTION: If you are going through a difficult time and suffer from depression or anxiety, don’t think it will just go away. Talk to your doctor or a professional. Why add misery to misery if you don’t have to?
Modern medicine truly is miraculous, talk therapy is great, an occasional massage will do wonders. Please don’t suffer unnecessarily.