When wallowing in depression seems normal....

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by ScentofCedar, Mar 9, 2007.

  1. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    You know, it has been occurring to me over the past few days, that I have been depressed, not myself at all, for all the long years since this began.

    Now, here is the interesting thing.

    The pain was actually strengthening, in a way.

    It became who I was.

    I was someone who functioned despite the pain.

    The chaos came to be the thing that provided focus in my life.

    Weird, huh?

    When we bounce from one chaotic event to the next over a period of years, we live our own lives from the sidelines.

    I feel like I am waking up.

    But you know?

    There doesn't seem to be much going on....

    That has to be because I have lived so much of my life on the edge of immediate disaster.

    Very strange, to be coming out the other side.

    Stranger still to realize how much of my life has been devoted, desperately devoted, to trying to get my kids to stand up.

    In a way?

    I feel like I am on an adventure to myself.

    But what if I don't like me, once I get there?!?


  2. KFld

    KFld New Member

    Originally poster by:

    But what if I don't like me, once I get there?!?


    I think you are going to love yourself!! If not, atleast it should be one hell of an adventure finding yourself
    Sounds like you are ready to do that!! Don't wait, start now.
  3. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    Barbara, life is an adventure and constantly changing.

    I'm starting to date and I find it amazing how narrow my world is compared to most other people. I think we feel so fragile we want to surround ourselves with "safe" things- people and activities we know, where we won't feel embarrassed, etc.

    It is thrilling to find that there is a whole big world out there to rediscover post-difficult child. Enjoy!

  4. KateM

    KateM Member

    I think that being wrapped up in motherhood and losing yourself into this role is common to a degree with most women. Yet parenting a difficult child pushes this to a whole new level! Yes, that is my "identity"- warrior mom. Who I am apart from that? I have to fight myself from giving into living just this label. I need to remind myself to nurture those other parts of me and the other relationships that are so dear to me. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed with my role as mom to difficult child and I don't put the effort into any other aspects of "me", but then I feel so depleted.In putting forth the effort to nurture my "other selves" and in keeping our marriage strong, I renew myself.
  5. Ally

    Ally New Member

    I understand where you are coming from. Somedays I feel I have lost myself. I dont know who I am anymore. I obsess about difficult child and the things that are going on with her. Im sure everyone around me is so sick of hearing about it. Ive lost my identity and the ability to socialize. When this is all over and done, who am I going to be? I guess this is something that will work out eventually, but I never in a million years thought life would be like this.
  6. KFld

    KFld New Member

    I am proof that there is a life beyond difficult child!! When you are in the middle of living it, it doesn't seem possible. Your posts bring me back to the summer of 2005 when we first discovered difficult child was a heroin addict and I get knots in my stomach just remembering how I felt each and everday. I used to come to work in a daze, drive in a daze and every part of my day, in the back of my mind, was always the thought that my son is a drug addict and how could this have happened and how was I going to survive it. It was the first thing that popped into my head when I woke up in the morning, the last thing I thought about when I went to bed at night, and what I would think about if I woke up during the night, which was quite often at that point.

    I got myself to alanon, I learned how to detatch, I totally stopped enabling, and though it didn't happen overnight, I did get my life back. difficult child and I now have a wonderful relationship, he will never live home again, and my home is peaceful. We have both gained so much from it.

    You can do it!!! It takes a lot of strength, but it is so worth it. I will never live that way again.
  7. KFld

    KFld New Member

    My husband did go with me for a very short time. He was much better at detatching and felt he didn't need to be there. We did however go for private counseling for other issues that probably stemmed mostly from difficult child issues, which helped us greatly.

    The thing that helped me most, and still does, is the serenity prayer. If you really really listen to the words and the meaning behind them, you can apply it to so many situations.

    God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.
    The courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference, AMEN!!

    To me this meant that I had to accept that my son was a drug addict and that I could not change that, he had too.
    The courage to change the things I can, meant me. I found the courage to change me and how I reacted and responded to the situation.
    And the wisdom to know the difference was a little more difficult to learn, but I did. That takes quite a bit of thinking sometimes and being realistic about whether you really can change something or not.

    I used to say this prayer when I was younger and never really felt the meaning of it until I needed to apply it to the most difficult time in my life. There were nights I would go to bed and not be able to sleep and I would just keep repeating it in my head until I drifted off.

    My difficult child is clean for today and I haven't felt the need to lean on this for sometime, but I know it will be the first thing I will do if need be.

    I also used to read my one day at a time in alanon book very religously and I found that to be a great help. You can use something like that and just replace the drugs and alcohol with anything that is controlling your difficult child's life that you know you have no control over.

    Hope something I have said helps. Hang in there!!!
  8. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    a patient had on this T shirt today:
    life is a journey, not a guided tour.

    lol I guess we have to feel our way along.
  9. KFld

    KFld New Member

    I didn't want to make you cry!! There is something else that I used to have printed out and stuck on my refrigerator that I used to look at often. I know I got it from this board and I'm going to post asking if anyone knows what I am talking about and if they can repost it. As soon as I find it I'll let you know.
  10. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    Originally Posted By: Suz
    Barbara, life is an adventure and constantly changing.

    I'm starting to date and I find it amazing how narrow my world is compared to most other people. I think we feel so fragile we want to surround ourselves with "safe" things- people and activities we know, where we won't feel embarrassed, etc.

    It is thrilling to find that there is a whole big world out there to rediscover post-difficult child. Enjoy!


    Suz, that is very cool.

    So, you are starting to date again?!?

    You know, that might be just the thing to cheer me right up, too.

    Anyone care to take a vote on whether husband will agree with me?


  11. KFld

    KFld New Member

    I think we should all try it. I think it would cheer all of us up. I'm sure it wouldn't cheer up my husband, but it's not all about him, is it???? :smile:
  12. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    KFld but it's not all about him, is it????

  13. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

  14. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    Yep it is good to focus on ourselves for a change but I for one have the fear that disaster will strike again just as I begin to find a new direction. As for dating... That is one path I'm not ready to explore. I really don't want to answer to anyone for the rest of my life. Not even my husband!! -RM
  15. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    What you said is very true. I didn't realize how caught up in the constant chaos I was til N started becoming stable and T began to mellow out. And I had tried to keep a sense of self seperate from motherhood. I think I was shocked when the drama suddenly stopped. I didn't know what to do once I'd finally stopped waiting for the disaster to hit again.

    Guess those teen years were way worse than I thought. :faint: lamo

    I didn't have a clue who I was anymore. I didn't know what to do with myself. And weird as it may sound, for a short while I even felt sort of useless. Like when you suddenly get fired from a job.

    That's one of the reasons I decided to go back to school. I'd always told myself I'd go once my kids were grown. Scarey. But I jumped in with both feet before I had a chance to change my mind. husband and the kids were all shocked. lol

    And now that I'm finally there, I'm sucking it all up like a sponge. I can't get enough. And although I might complain some, I do enjoy it. Last week I drew blood for the first time! :biggrin: And I did it right the first time. That was really awesome. I can draw your blood, check your blood sugar, hemoglobin, hematocrit, check you for mono, or for pregnancy, even blood type you. I can check your urine for all sorts of things, and even give you a strep test. :rofl:

    The point is, I'm doing what I want and I'm having fun. Eighteen months ago I'd have never thought it possible. I know the chaos can hit again. I don't know if I'll get caught up in it again. I've changed alot recently. I'm doing alot more, they're grown it's time they learn how to handle it, thinking than just jumping in and doing it myself.
  16. ScentofCedar

    ScentofCedar New Member

    You know what, Lisa? The chaos MAY hit again ~ but you are different, now.

    You are more here than you were, before.

    :doctor: (LISA) :doctor: :doctor: (ME AND LISA. I BECAME A NURSE, TOO.)

    ALL OF US, AS WE RECLAIM OUR LIVES: :smile: :warrior: :bravo: :rofl: :princess: :flower:

    Now, about the checking my urine part....


  17. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    SUZ - you are dating???? DO TELL!!!

    I have to say this was very timely for me to read. Last year I went through a break up and quickly re-evaluated my life. I did not like who I had become or where I was heading. It is important to stop and look. I think we realize that as we age - I believe it is called wisdom. Oddly enough, part of that serenity prayer. Anyway, lately with my much more aware self, I have been feeling myself slip again. It is like I am on my way down into a big pit and struggling to find something to grasp to prevent it.
    Not sure it is actually better than just being unaware...OK - it is, but it is harder.

    What do you do when you feel this? I am looking for ways not to go back to my dark place. I WANT TO BE BRIGHT AND SHINY!!!
  18. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    Nomad, I could wear a blouse cut down to my navel and the only stares I'd get would be squints from men trying to *find* something. :rofl:

  19. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Hmmm. I don't think I'll start dating. I have enough to handle with both husband and Raoul.

  20. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    Suz, I'm sitting here at the computer at 3:50 in the morning (yes, it is really that hour here in Israel), and it's lucky there's no one around because I suddenly laughed out loud at your post!

    I think this is a wonderful thread. That's because it shows how everyone is not static, and we all know we are going through something and moving to a different place, even though it is truly painful, but it is necessary in order to get to a different and hopefully better place.

    I'm sorry if that sounds trite, but to me it is the truth.

    And Barbara -- Scent of Cedar -- it is very interesting what you say about depression. I'm not sure if I know the difference any more between being in depression and not being in depression. Since my difficult child is still at home, he puts a constant blight on all our lives, and I think depression is just my middle name. I don't even want to start thinking about it. I only know that I just cannot get myself to do anything I WANT to do, I only do what I HAVE to do. I think that is part of my depression, not doing anything that will give me pleasure. It's a vicious circle or vicious cycle and I can't see how to get out of it, and I am sure that I am chronically depressed. I understand your question, because I can't even think what I will do if and when my life changes and difficult child just leaves us alone. More often than not, I don't think I will live to see that day.

    Oh dear, I'm making myself depressed. I'll sign off now.

    Love, Esther