The past week and a half has been an avalanche of feel.
This usually scares the shit out of me. Right about now, a black hole perches on my shoulder threatening to suck the light from my eyes.
This time it’s different. It feels different.
After I quit my job in June last year, the black hole swallowed me and I knew I was in trouble. I started my meds again, which (through trial and error) happens to be Wellbutrin. It helps, but not much. I don’t like being on medication because it’s not a solution. I believe my depression is more about my environment than anything else.
My psychiatrist had suggested adding another medication called Lamictal about a year ago. He said he had seen some great results but I was reluctant to turn my brain into a chemical cocktail. Then he told me there was a black box warning that came with the new medication… “There’s a rare and dangerous side effect I need to tell you about,” he said. “Basically, your mucus membranes blister and slough off. This means your mouth, nose, ears, around your eyes, inside your penis and your asshole. It’s extremely painful and often ends in death, but not quickly.”
He wrote a prescription but I never filled it.
I started to get desperate around the holidays last year because I couldn’t shake the weight of depression I was under. I needed to be able to get things done. I lost my shit last year and quit my job to pursue a life made by hand. I was stuck and everything else was in motion. I’d be buried by it all.
So, blistering, peeling orifices be damned. I started Lamictal.
You know that scene in the movie Snatch where Brad Pitt’s character, Mickey, lets a guy twice his size land a meaty punch to his face, sending him airborne? POW. Mickey fall backwards with a splash, sinking into dark water. He sinks, sinks, sinks…
Then, just before darkness takes him, Mickey surges to the surface and lands a devastating blow to the other fighter like: NOT TODAY MOTHERFUCKER, RAAAAAGH.
Holy shitballs, that.
Let’s take a step back. The last way I want this interpreted is as some kind of optimistic hand job. Pills aren’t going to save me, and either is some secret sauce of self-help. All I’ve accomplished is a foothold. The work, the stuff that’s going to save me, lies ahead. All that’s different is the kick ass part of me, the part that’s always been there, is awake and ready to tear shit up.
It feels like a resurrection. I’m not drowning anymore. Instead of being paralyzed with fear as the waves crest over my head, I’m surfing the fuckness out of them. Instead of avoiding the bramble of feelings grown from hard and heavy life choices, I’m running straight through it, arms outstretched.
And that feeling comes none too soon. I’m in the middle of a storm of change and the emotions that rain down unmercifully within it.
After I quit my job without another to replace it, I agonized about how I was going to generate income. I looked for a job, sent out a couple of applications, but my heart wasn’t in it. I can’t go back to that. I will not. My life is not a shit sandwich that I have to take a bite of each day. So, I’m selling my home and most of the things I’ve filled it with so I can build a tiny home. I’m still not sure how it’s all going to work out, but my choice is filled with possibility. And you know what’s ball-quaking scary? Possibility. Anything can happen.
Fuck it. J.O.B.s are dead ends. It’s time to be alive.
No sooner than deciding that, I did something spontaneous that made me completely heartsick. It messed me up, yo. There was nothing to do but sit down and cry about it. A lot. I mean, like a baby with flaming diaper rash. It’s such a clusterfuck of feelings. Sad. Happy. Lonely. Stupid. Mad. Lucky. Grateful. Hopeful. Someone unknowingly made me feel a way I thought lost to time and wounds. It was kinda magical, kinda cursed.
But they live on the moon. I just have to accept that.
These choices, these feelings, would never have happened or would have laid me low not long ago. But now it feels different, it feels like they were the right things to do.
I haven’t felt this way in a long time. Maybe never.
Narrator: [Tyler steers the car into the opposite lane and accelerates] What are you doing?
Tyler Durden: Guys, what would you wish you’d done before you died?
Ricky: Paint a self-portrait.
The Mechanic: Build a house.
Tyler Durden: [to Narrator] And you?
Narrator: I don’t know. Turn the wheel now, come on!
Tyler Durden: You have to know the answer to this question! If you died right now, how would you feel about your life?
-From the movie, Fight Club