Friday, May 2, 2014

Look at This Thing I Did: Millennial Social Masturbation

Yes, I realize that most of my posts are of a serious nature and I am doing quite well now for all those who are inclined to know, but I have so many ideas swimming in my head that I need to write the occasional whimsical post before this blog takes on the tone of a funeral dirge. 

My rant today is predicated on far too many people thinking I actually give a damn about what they do, and telling me as such through the most passive-aggressive of ways: the myriad social media networks which have given people far more self-esteem than they deserve. The posts aren't made with the intent of keeping an online scrapbook of sorts, it is a way of bragging about how you got reservations to the restaurant that makes a pate in the shape of a penis, or how you can travel throughout the world and telling everyone that you are on the cutting edge of living life. 

When you were shown slides at a relative's house once upon a time, it took every bit of courage to not become homicidal as you pretended to care about Person's X sojourn to Morocco. Now, every rube with a Facebook account is actually seeking photos to "like" so they can prove they care in some hollow and banal way. Congrats on having a child, but I don't need to see the placenta documented as if it will change the world and bring about lasting memories. (Some group of asswipes will like that photo anyway.) 

I say this as a complete hypocrite as I recently joined Facebook after a two year hiatus and now am trying to fight myself to not check on everyone's life. Thankfully. as someone never one to drop likes as an unconscious method of communicating (even you, person who came out of the closet via status) I can drop this insidious habit as swiftly as I can pick it up. 

I don't care what 99.9% of the world does, and we should stop assuming people do.  

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Enigmatic Normal

Mercifully, the anti-depressants are doing their job and I feel infinitely better than I did when I first started this blog. The program I am currently attending has been helpful twofold: I am now cognizant and implementing coping skills (something I had previous regarded as useless psychobabble) and giving me a schedule and structure especially when I was doing rather terribly mentally.

Now, this is where the coping skills and changes must occur, because I am where I was before mentally but I still have all of the bad habits that I had previously accumulated (terrible patience, overeating, and general sense of being lazy to which I had grown accustomed). The medication does help some but when you don't do anything positive when you have the capability of doing so, there's a lot of wasted time that could have been used doing something productive or taking the steps to break said habits.

So yes, I guess this normal for me, but what I have considered normal for a long time has been vastly unhealthy and skewed by cynicism. I live a life dominated by what food I am going to eat and most joy has been sucked from it. It truly is astonishing to look back at these past six years or so and so how I have allowed myself to get out of control, albeit with brief intervals of good care and health.

When I went in for treatment, I said I was "all in" for anything and that I truly want to get better. I was just unaware of how much needs to change, as in a fundamental life transformation. My finances, my academics, and my life depend on it. I have sauntered through personal Hell so many times yet I always find a way to make a return journey to the inferno. A one-way trip from the smoldering is what I need, and bright times compounded by good habits is what I truly deserve.

So this week begins an erosion of all the misery I have accrued in my life, be it the shame I feel for being 23 and lacking the level of education of my friends, the food I ate to cope for so long (and the induced vomiting which some ran subsequent), or the inability to relax because I fashioned myself to be a garden-variety fuck-up. I have positive things in my life, it is just about damn time I embraced them.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

There is a Light

My head feels exceedingly foggy, and the process is anything but rapid, yet there is a level of hope after a long spell of despair and hopelessness. The medications are doing their job (I repeat, they work in a gradual manner) and my catastrophic thinking has subsided for the most part.

A sincere mea culpa for not being able to post more often to this blog, the intensive outpatient program in which I am currently enrolled is quite time-consuming albeit in a good way. It takes about ten weeks, and the level of care I have found there has been nothing short of stellar. So yes, even on this rainy, no good, shitty day, there is hope to be found if you're willing to look.

Until the next time I post, please take care.

Friday, March 14, 2014

The Nerve to Change

As I write this, I am going through anti-depressant Hell. For those familiar with these demons, they also know that the medications work slowly but powerfully and that you feel better gradually, but for someone  such as myself with East Coast patience, each second can be excruciating.

Why did I do this? Because I wanted my life back. The posts will occur more sparingly on here but know that I am on the road to recovery and snatching a beautiful life back from the jaws of soul-crushing depression. God bless you all, and thank you for any well-wishes; not to mention if you know someone in your life battling depression, ask them if they want to talk. You could save a life by doing it.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

From Darkness Comes Light

This weekend was possibly the toughest mental challenge I have had in a very long time. When you go back on anti-depressant medication, the first week or so is the worst week of your life. Imagine someone going through heroin withdrawal and place all the twitching, retching, and physical illness into your brain and be in a persistently manic state for 48 hours. Were there suicidal thoughts? Absolutely. It's as if the Zoloft were saying, "Hey dipshit, this is what you feel like when you stop taking me. Trust me and you will get out of this hole." 

However, I thank God every day for the support and love of my parents, who never waver in their efforts to bring joy to a seemingly terminal depressed 23-year old.  Through the Seton Hall meltdown to far too many surly days, they are my rock and my light. I shudder at the thought of where I would be without them. When many would have given up on a wayward, ill soul as myself, they never did.     

I'm feeling better and getting better. Onward and forward. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Pain and The Neuroticism

"You know that pain and guilt cannot be taken away with a wave of a magic wand. They're the things we carry with us, the things that make us who we are. If we lose them, we lose ourselves. I don't want my pain taken away! I need my pain!"  

My pain is a part of me and has been since I was a child. If you know me, regardless of the context in which you do, you have seen a pained version of me. When at my worst, I turn into an introverted vessel of a human with my brain plagued by the next seemingly unbearable challenge. However, that pain has positive traits that seem to manifest into my life at various intervals. Empathy is something I have in abundance because when you're so personally imbued with pain, you become a master at recognizing it in other people and attempting to divert those attitudes. While there is a component of wanting to avoid pain when you have a brief day of happiness, my intentions are usually pure. 

Nothing I ever do seems to fulfill me or give me joy. Most days I go to bed feeling like a bastard who let others down, even though my work is exceedingly tough and I do the best with what I have. I am not an oracle or a deity that can cure autism with a wave of a limb or some sort of telekinesis, yet each day I come home feeling like I failed somebody. I can have the best day of my life but if some mistake occurs during the day, I dwell on it like that defines my whole being as a person. This bit of self-flagellation is what makes time by myself torturous since the inner monologue that has been dominating my life is composed of all the critiques I have received, and when combined with a photographic memory, I have an entire mental rolodex of stinging harangues and gripes that play interminably and a skewed view of reality that makes the most callous dystopian fantasy seem humane. 

I have let others dominate my being for far too long. When I had Facebook, I was too goddamn ashamed to post that I attended Union County College because of my K-12 pedigree and the fear that I somehow managed to fuck up. Well, now I simply do not give a shit what anyone thinks since my life has been in "Survival Mode" on and off since October 2006. Depriving yourself of any joy because of the inevitable restrictions of life is a wonderful way to commit social suicide and potentially lead to the actual act. I am not the "St. Peter's Prep grad with a finance job by 22"  mold, and in hindsight I am damn sure I never was. I did waste a lot of tears and anguish wishing I was, though, but I attribute that to having fucked-out priorities and a lack of ego. Life is far too complex to be reduced to an exact guideline as to how you are supposed to live it and I am smashing the walls in my head. 

I am who I am, and I need my pain because the enlightenment and joys can only be cherished that much more. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

The Food and The Rehab

Most people between the ages of 18-23 have a similar plan of what to do in their spare time and weekends be it drink, sleep, and go off on an interminable quest for sex that is less de Sade and more Sisyphus. I often chose to abuse my body and explore how truly neurotic I can be if I allowed myself. 

Now, I must clarify with regard to "abusing my body", I am far too much of a pussy to even fathom cutting and the like. What I did for five years was submerge my mind in food. While it may seem like just harmless actions combined with my desire to actually leave my house in a given day, I treated food with the slavish devotion of a junkie deep in their spiral (which is why I will use junkie jargon since I think it applies). Sometimes I would drive an hour under the guise of clearing my head, but with the ultimate goal of getting my fix. Needless to say, I was consistently in no mood to savor whatever I was eating, I just wanted a goddamned escape and a release of endorphins. 

How devoted was I to food? It would occupy my mind constantly and I would sometimes plan my entire day based upon whatever and wherever I wanted to eat. The amount of money I have blown on food pre-rehab was appalling, and bordering on sociopathic. I basically bought Enron stock ten years after the fact, knowing damn well that the returns would be non-existant and actually worse than stock since there's been nothing but negatives to go with it. But hey, I told myself constantly, "This meal will be my last, I must change," which is worth jack shit to a conniving, non-committal asshole. 

And the junky monologue would coarse through my head, especially when my parents started to notice weight gain and when I grew more brazen, just bringing food into the house. Beforehand, my adult ass was smuggling food in a backpack because I knew my parents would disapprove. Nothing quite humbles you like bold-faced lying to your parents like you're a kid because you don't have to the nerve to say what is truly on your mind, "I am so miserable I want to kill myself. However, blood scares me so I will commit suicide via coronary or heart attack."  If I had a Food Network show, it would be a cross between "Super Size Me" and a grainy Al-Qaeda beheading video (and it would still be more enjoyable than some shows on that network). 

So, like all junkies who finally reach their breaking point and have enough clarity in their head, I started to rehab myself. While it only began this past Wednesday, the amount of hope it has given me cannot be measured. I am happy, more willing to engage, and interested in things for the first time in a while. Of course, with every addiction comes the potential of relapsing, and as someone whose eating is tied to depression one false step can send me plummeting back down this mountain I am climbing. Yet I am not there, and I refuse to allow myself the opportunity to fall into large habits, but if I do, the idea that my life is over because of one bad day will be erased from my mind.