This is the conclusion of my depression chronicles. If you want to know anything more, you can leave a comment, or get in touch some other way. This is enough me-me-me-ing. If you really want to catch up, click for part one or part two.
Tall, dark and BFF
In May 2016 tall, dark, and now far away moved to Riversdale. I was devastated. We didn’t see each other a lot while we were living in neighbouring cities, but now… when would I see him again?
OK, let me back up a little. From the first moment I realised that I liked him more as just a friend, he told me that he didn’t want a romantic relationship. Initially I was fine with that. But then I wasn’t so much. Obviously not good for the mental wellbeing. He liked me plenty too, but there’s always an unbalance in relationships, right? Maybe. I don’t know. One thing that was clear, was that we would be best friends until something significant caused us to not be. And living in different provinces was not significant. We still chat on Whatsapp almost every day. I’ve been to visit him three times. The first time just after another op.
Being exposed to extreme cold and other people’s germs for the first time in years, he got the flu. Which turned into pneumonia. And the doctor discovered his heart had a leaky valve and was enlarged to compensate. He’d have to get a new valve and probably a pacemaker. He was in hospital for months. There was a complication during the op. And this time I wasn’t there to sleep on the floor in front of his bed in case he needed something. I battled with that. Everything turned out well in the end.
Kind of. I miss him terribly – on bad days especially. And the bad days are a little more often now.
The problem with trying to take care of everyone else
My mom has been taking care of my nephew pretty much since he was born and had two eye ops by the time he was five weeks old. He turns 19 in May. My mom retired at the end of October 2017, and she’s using her pension to pay for his studies. I pay for her medical aid, and I’m so grateful I can do that. About six weeks ago she hurt her knee badly. Osteoporosis and joint pain is an even bigger thing in the family than depression and migraine, hard as that is to believe. She didn’t want to go to the doctor, because she didn’t want to strain the medical savings account, she knew a knee replacement was probably what the doctor would recommend, and she is adamant that she does not want that. And yes, the MRI ate a huge chunk of our medical savings. Yes, she needs a knee replacement. And yes, she won’t go for the op. Of course this all has revived her own depression. And there’s nothing I can do.
There’s nothing I can do to get my brother to step up and help – my mom’s flat is built at the back of his property. I can’t visit every week. I’m trying to take responsibility for everyone else, and I can’t do it. And that’s my problem, not theirs. I need to do things that make me happy, says my doc. So I have rainbow hair. And I have a pedicure every month (well, that and the fact that my back won’t let me tend to my own feet without causing days of agony). Thanks to my blog, I also get invited to the occasional event, which I make myself attend in an effort to be social. Because even with talking to tall, dark and always there for me every day, I am lonely.
I haven’t admitted that to many people before. And now it is written for the world to see (but not many people will, so that’s OK).
Depression isn’t something to be ashamed about
And unlike at the start of my story, I talk freely about my depression. I’m no longer ashamed of admitting that the only I way I manage to function every day is because of three tablets – and a lot of coffee. There are days I don’t want to get out of bed, don’t want to shower. I battle through these days until I get to the weekend. Saturdays I try to go out in public for a couple of hours in the morning at least. Then I sleep until 19:00 and write blog posts while listening to audiobooks or podcasts until the early hours of Sunday morning. After that I sleep as much as I can, which usually means sleep doesn’t come easily on Sunday nights. Every weekend I try to break this cycle. I never succeed.
I feel like these three posts have just been a lot of rambling about myself. But I guess it served as its own bit of therapy.
I hope I never have to read them again.