Epidemic of depression.

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I haven’t been reading other blogs too much lately (too depressed), but I did read this post by Bradley over at Bipolar Bear.   He describes a depression that sounds quite a bit like mine.  I think a lot of people are saddened about Trump’s winning the election, and feel hopeless about living in America.

In my case, I don’t think it’s just Trump winning the election, though I don’t think that helps.   I think my depression is due to several things:  abandonment issues being triggered, the election, the wildfires and lack of rain, my seasonal SAD, plumbing issues that have no easy fix, and other, less specific things that have been bothering me.

Right now, I feel pretty hopeless and depressed about everything and I’m not even sure why.  I just feel sad and seem to have no energy.   I don’t have much motivation to write anything, or even to read other blogs or comment on them.   I’m going to talk to my therapist about this on Thursday and see if we can figure out what’s going on because I’m so tired of feeling this way.

It seems like a lot of people I know are feeling this way lately, even people who weren’t bothered by the outcome of the election.   Is it something in the air? I don’t know.

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It’s just one of those nights.

A young woman lying on her couch

I’m having one of those nights where I have no ideas for new posts at all–no original ideas, no photos to show you, no funny memes or cartoons to share, nada, zip, zero. I’m too lazy to even reblog someone else’s article.

But it’s okay. I can still write a little post about having nothing to say. Happens to all of us bloggers now and then, doesn’t it?

Actually, it’s been a rough week and I’m just extremely exhausted. I’m slooooooowwwlly overcoming a really bad upper respiratory/sinus infection (this was what the cold I had two weeks ago morphed into). I’m taking antibiotics but they make me a little nauseated and my body still feels weak (although the achiness has finally gone away). My appetite is finally coming back a little, but only a little.

My son flew today and of course the idea of my firstborn strapped in a sardine can above the clouds puts the fear of God in me, but of course he landed safely in Atlanta, where he’s going to be in another dance competition this weekend. Then on Monday, he’s renting a car (time for heart attack #2) and driving here for a few days. He’s spending the nights here with me. I can’t wait, because I haven’t seen him in person in two years.   Him being 900 miles away and neither of us exactly rolling in the cash tends to keep us apart for way too long.

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Half-baked ideas; keeping a schedule.

I still feel ill, but my head is swimming with ideas for new posts.  The trouble is, I have so many half-formed ideas and simply don’t have the energy right now to develop one of those ideas  into something that wouldn’t sound half-baked.  All the cold medication is making me groggy and all I really want to do is sleep off this bug.

As this blog has grown, I’ve noticed that adhering to a kind of schedule does help keep me organized.  So far, I have Monday Melodies and the Sunday guest posts.  I’m thinking of having blog parties every other Saturday (too much work to do one every week).  I don’t want to become too regimented because then blogging would lose its spontaneity which is part of why it’s so fun, but I think I will have certain days where I’ll have specific topics.

Feeling Overwhelmed: it’s a PTSD thing

I think this is something a lot of us can relate to, especially those of us with PTSD and complex PTSD. I know I sure can, and there have been times where writing a new post seems like moving a mountain and I just can’t do it. Welcome back, Linda Lee!

A Blog About Healing From PTSD

3i1_this_charming_charlie_tumblr_584Image from This Charming Charlie on Tumblr.

TWO WEEKS AGO, when I started this brand new blog, I had big ideas for my first post. I was thrilled that the name I wanted — A Blog About Healing From PTSD — was available. I picked out the theme, loaded a header picture, wrote my description page, and got all the settings the way I like them.

But when I started to write my first post, I froze.

No, my problem isn’t writer’s block. I’m not depressed, not anxious, not sick, and I’m certainly not too busy to find the time to write. My reason for waiting two weeks before writing my first post is something that happens to me a lot, in all kinds of situations. It’s maddening, it’s debilitating, and most people don’t seem to understand it at all.

My problem: I AM OVERWHELMED.

When I’m overwhelmed, the simplest…

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My blogging mojo is back!

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This is my 10th post today. I don’t think I’ve ever made 10 posts in one day before. Yes, I realize they’re all either pretty short or reblogs, but still! I’m very proud of myself. Maybe I should give Jonas the credit though, since he trapped me inside my house all day today.

In general though, my interest in blogging has returned after a couple of months of feeling like it was becoming a chore. I think bloggers go through the doldrums every so often and you just have to keep on writing and wait for them to pass. I think my Seasonal Affective Disorder had something to do with it too. In the fall, I lose interest in pretty much everything. Once the days start getting longer, my mood improves and my interest in things and my creativity returns.

Writer’s block.

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I feel like there’s a traffic jam in my brain. Or perhaps, no traffic at all. For some reason I can’t fathom, I can’t work up the motivation to write anything. I feel like my creativity has gone AWOL. I wake up feeling depressed. I go to sleep feeling depressed. It’s a numb, zombie-like depression but underneath that…there’s something coming to the surface. There’s an underlying anxiety and a feeling of impending insanity. I don’t know why. I pray for an answer, some clarity, some ability to process the stuff going on in my head right now, but there don’t seem to be any answers.

I can’t think straight. I had a bad panic attack at work yesterday; it came out of nowhere. I was out of control. I embarrassed myself and was shaken the rest of the day.

I’m using various techniques (prayer, meditation, long hot baths) to calm myself down, but it’s only a temporary fix and I still have no creative ideas for new posts. I forced myself to write this one. I’ve said many times before that writing is at least in part a discipline. You have to make yourself write, even when you don’t want to. Then it gets easier. But I’m ignoring my own advice.

I feel like my small life is growing smaller. I’m isolating myself more. I think about death a lot (not suicide, just the idea of death and it scares me). I keep asking God to intervene and lift my mood but this time he’s sleeping on the job.

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I know I have to take responsibility and make myself get out of the house sometimes and make myself write. But when the time comes, I just find it so hard to get motivated. I have problems with the seasons and always get depressed this time of year. But this didn’t happen last year. I wrote like a maniac a year ago and worked through a lot of emotional stuff. I was full of ideas and writing allayed any depression I would have experienced.

I have faith though. I know this is temporary. I know God is there and is sitting back for a reason. He wants me to work through this on my own. I feel like I’m on the edge of an epiphany, something new I need to discover about myself.

I know this post won’t win any Pulitzer prizes and isn’t at all inspiring but at least it’s something. I know I need to just sit down and make myself write SOMETHING every day, even if it sounds uninspired or even stupid. I need to tell my inner critic to STFU. I’m not trying to impress anyone, just get my thoughts on “paper” so I can process them and learn from them. This is only meant to be a journal, after all. Maybe this will even open a discussion about writer’s block and I won’t feel so alone. I’m also going to look into therapy.

Trolls and lack of motivation.

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I thought I had my lack of motivation all figured out, and thought I’d conquered it, but obviously I haven’t, since I’ve been posting a lot less than I used to and it hasn’t gotten any better. I can’t figure out my lack of motivation, because I love writing and blogging has brought me so much insight into myself and my place in the world, and even moments of joy.

I was all set to write up a new post last night (albeit, not a long one). Whenever I start a new blogging session, I always check my comments first. Lately I don’t seem to be getting as many. I have more viewers and hits overall than ever before, but fewer people are commenting. I’m not sure why. I don’t know if this is something to worry about or not. Maybe it’s silly, but I wonder sometimes if people are put off by my frankness and occasionally unpopular opinions. Obviously, they’re reading, and I do know some people appreciate my frankness, so I guess I shouldn’t worry. I know one of my most frequent commenters (who was actually my #1 commenter for awhile) is busy writing a book right now (and also hasn’t been feeling well) and even Opinionated Man doesn’t seem to be getting as many comments these days, so maybe it’s not just me. Maybe it’s just my stupid narcissism making everything all about me and taking everything personally. Maybe it’s just because I’m posting less, duh.

So anyway, last night I was going to write something about covert narcissism and avoidant personality disorder and whether or not they might actually be the same thing. After all, covert narcissism isn’t recognized as a real disorder but AvPD is. I’ll probably still write that article but I do find lately I’ve been veering away from the topic of narcissism and this blog is becoming more of a general interest blog.

I opened up my laptop, and as is my habit, checked my comment folder before starting to write. And the first comment I saw was a very trollish comment which I won’t bother quoting because of how hateful it was. I sent the comment to Trash anyway. The comment wasn’t merely critical (I’ll still approve those and usually respond to them in some way); it was an attack on my character because of an article I posted MONTHS ago. The writer of the comment objected to what she or he felt was my being too soft on narcissists. Bible verses were used to fuel their rage and personal attack on me.

I hate that. I can take criticism if it’s constructive, but can’t stand judgmental people, and I especially can’t stand people who use religion as an excuse to act like assholes. The Bible is wonderful, but so many people these days use it to back up unacceptable behavior, as if this is their holy mission and right. It’s very narcissistic. Churches are filled with narcissists who used scripture as a way to intimidate those they disagree with, so they don’t have to take any responsibility for their cruel and vicious personal attacks. The Internet is full of them too. I can’t say whether or not this person is a narcissist, but their behavior displayed splitting and black and white thinking, and the “us versus them” mindset so prevalent today. Of course, to this person, I’m one of “them.” What they’re doing has a name: religious abuse.

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I know I shouldn’t have taken the comment personally. I know that as a blogger who focuses on a sensitive issue, angering people sometimes can’t be avoided. People are sometimes going to disagree with you. You are going to have haters and trolls, especially if your blog becomes widely read, as this one has. It comes with the territory. I know many people read this blog and get a lot out of it, and still get far more positive comments than negative ones, so why I am allowing one stupid negative comment to intimidate me enough to make me not want to post? But that’s exactly what happened: I decided not to post anything at all last night because of that stupid comment. I said to myself, “I’m over this. I don’t want to deal with these haters anymore. I don’t think I should even blog about narcissism anymore.” It’s true that I have been focusing less on narcissism because I feel like I’ve pretty much said everything there is to say about it already. But I allowed this one comment to destroy my motivation to write about anything at all!

I have a message for that commenter should they read this: I don’t care what you have to say. You’re a bully and a jerk. This is MY blog, and if you don’t like it, don’t read it! Go read something you agree with instead. It’s my blog, and I can write about whatever I want and you have no right to dictate to me what I can and can’t say. You may have a valid point in your opinion and the right to express it, but you have no right to personally attack me. I’m going to continue to write honestly about what I feel, not to please you. You do not intimidate me and neither do the Bible verses you spout to make it seem like you’re on a personal mission from God when in fact your behavior is itself very narcissistic. But thank you for giving me an idea for a new article.

I love blogging and don’t want to ever stop. I’m not going to let one judgmental malcontent ruin my motivation or put a damper on what I love to do. It took me too long to get to where I am. I’ve allowed myself to be intimidated by people like that for my whole life, and it’s a big part of why I never achieved much of anything and always doubted myself and eventually gave up anything I ever undertook.

The neverending rain and depression.

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I can’t seem to shake this seasonal funk I’m in. It’s been raining steadily for a week now–gloomy, overcast, steady rain that goes on all day and night, not the intense but shortlived thunderstorms of summer that are somehow energizing.

I don’t like fall in this part of the country. It always rains a lot, and as much as everyone crows about the “fall colors,” I don’t think they’re that special. This isn’t Vermont with its sugar maples that turn brilliant orange and red, or Colorado with its neon yellow Aspens–here the trees just look unhealthy. There’s a few spots of bright color here and there, but the numerous oaks and sycamores just turn from green to brown or a deep purplish red before they go bare for another winter. It’s depressing. Maybe up on the Blue Ridge Parkway the sight is prettier, but I don’t have a running car right now so I can’t go there.

I’ve been stuck inside my house for days, waging war on the camel crickets and the fleas I can’t seem to get rid of. I’m working a lot more. My roommate is moving on Tuesday and I haven’t found a replacement yet. It’s dark when I get up in the morning. It’s getting dark shortly after I come home from work. Yesterday was actually cold and I had to crank up the heat for the first time since April. I’m tired and draggy all the time. I barely have the energy or motivation to cook dinner. I’ve even been avoiding my friends because I just feel like I’m going to drag them down with me.

As far as my writing, the ideas have been coming like an old man’s teeth–few and far between. I’ve been resorting to either reblogging other people’s stuff, posting fluff or pictures, or recycling old articles I wrote, due to the dearth of original ideas. Actually I do have one good idea for a new long article, but I can’t seem to motivate myself to write it. I’d promise I’d write it today, but I don’t trust myself to stick to that promise. I know if I don’t though, I’ll be feeling terrible about it.

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Last fall wasn’t any different from this one weather-wise, but I was new to blogging and the excitement and novelty of that kept me motivated and able to beat my SAD symptoms. I did have a lot of worries, as I recall. My daughter was still having drug issues and was facing 30 days in jail (she is doing a lot better a year later–she has matured a lot and become much more responsible). I wasn’t sure I was going to get along with my new roommate. My ex was still abusing me through text messages. But blogging was like a whole new world, it felt like doors were opening everywhere.

Sam Vaknin, the “god of narcissism,” found this blog in November (my least favorite month other than December) by Googling himself (haha!) and actually made some nice comments and shared some of my articles on his sites and social media. That gave my blog the early jumpstart it needed and I was ecstatic. As far as I know, he still comes here to read but he no longer comments or shares anything. That’s okay because this blog is doing well on its own now, without anyone’s help. But the novelty and newness of it is gone. I don’t see any new doors opening. I know I have to open those doors myself (the next step would probably be writing a book) but I just don’t seem to have the energy or motivation.

Last year at this time the ideas were almost coming too fast–it was actually frustrating because I didn’t have enough time to write about everything I wanted to write about. Now it’s all I can do to think of any original ideas at all. As far as writing about narcissism, what more is there to write about it that I haven’t already? I don’t know whether to keep the focus on narcissism, or shift the focus to general mental health, or just turn it into general purpose blog. I’m stuck. Blogging has brought me so much joy; what happened?

I feel like I’ve reached a blockade in my path to recovery. I know that isn’t really true, and it’s just depression making me feel so negative, and it’s just a matter of working through it or waiting it out. I know it will pass; it always does. But I feel like I’m running in place but going nowhere. The weather isn’t helping.

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This too shall pass.

I know the only way through this is self discipline. I have to make myself write even when I don’t want to. Once I get started, I get into it and that tends to lift my mood and my imagination begins to work again. I also have to make myself get out, in spite of the gloomy weather and no car. I have the company car to drive; I can at least go up to the store in that. Walks in the light drizzly rain aren’t so bad; it isn’t freezing cold out. I haven’t been to church in several weeks either. It always make me feel good to go, but for some reason I’ve been sleeping in instead. Then I wind up feeling guilty and miserable (not because I’m offending God–I don’t think attending church is necessary to “please God”–but because I know I’m doing myself a disservice by skipping).

So today, instead of sleeping in, as I’ve been doing on weekends lately, I’m going to make myself write, make myself go out for a walk in spite of the dreary weather, maybe even take a short drive. Read a book. Clean the house (it needs it). Do something that will make me feel like one of the living. Sitting around feeling sorry for myself and sleeping half the day away is going to get me nowhere fast. I got away from my abusers, but the way I’ve been treating myself is self abuse! It’s possible to be as toxic to myself as my narcissists were to me. I know I’m not the only person in the world who struggles with this time of year. And spring is only 5 1/2 months away! :mrgreen:

Hey, I actually wrote a new article that’s more than two sentences long! I think I feel a little better already.