Weeping in the morning.

There is a passage in Christian scripture about how weeping may endure for the night but that joy comes in the morning.

I have been weeping in the morning. I don’t weep. I don’t sob. I may cry a bit here and there, but I have avoided serious weeping and sobbing much of my life. I couldn’t stand to be that broken. I learned to not do it, to stop it. So, when I have really needed the cleansing that can come from deeply mourning some true loss, I haven’t even been able to do it.

I remember my brother telling about sobbing in his wife’s arms the night after our mother died. I remember feeling that sense of disconnect when I heard it. I didn’t know how to mourn for my mother. I didn’t have any arms into which to cry.

This has been the case with my life for a very long time. I have also had depression for a long time. It has been held in check a lot of the time, possibly by medication or possibly by the weird chemistry that is the human brain. But, I know I am in a full blown depression right now. I have had moments when it’s been loosened a bit, when I could feel other things, but most of the time lately I have just had a sense of numbness, dread, disconnect all at once. I don’t feel like much of anything is even real.

I look at my life. It has been a mess for a long time, and I have felt like I was scrambling to try to bring some order to it for many years. There have been years when all I seemed to do was work to survive and just try to pull on through. It has left me so empty.

The other morning when I finally wept, I just sobbed and sobbed on my bed. I had my dogs there, but I didn’t worry about being heard. There was no one to hear me anyway. I wept for my mother, for the father who never was there, for the broken hearts I’ve had, for the losses I’ve experienced, for the times I’ve been treated badly, for the loss of dreams. I wept for the child I’d never have. I wept for the dreams that seem so far out of reach, that maybe I’ve lost for good because it’s too late. I wept for the loss of self.

I didn’t know if the tears would help me heal or would just drag me deeper into my pain. I still don’t know. I tried to let go and weep. But, at some point, the alarm went off and I had to face the day. There were three patients to see. I had to drive to their homes, put myself aside, and try to be there for them. I had a call with a woman who is an executive coach who was kind enough to offer to talk to me. I had to be coherent for that, too. The wheels are coming off of my practice because I’m not getting paid. There are so many problems mounting. They’ve been there all along in some cases, but there are new ones piled on that, and it’s just scary as hell. I wanted to talk to the woman to try to explore a different path for myself.

I’m trying to be there for my patients, trying to resurrect my business, trying to figure out what I want to do and who I want to be. I’m trying to make enough money to feed the dogs, pay for the car, keep the house, stay afloat. I’m not even trying to deal with the other looming problems and debts, just the survival ones.

I feel like long ago I shattered, and many of the pieces were just swept away or crushed underfoot. I almost feel I don’t exist anymore. I’m shards of glass, a figurine not completely broken, but on the verge of disintegrating.

I’m at a loss for words. I wrote this blog entry once already, and through the magic of computers it was lost. It just disappeared. It wasn’t that it was that good, but, much like me, it just was so much nothing. No trace. I don’t feel there is much of a trace of me left anymore.

I joined a church today. I’m not sure why. The dogs led me there in an odd way. But, I don’t feel God is necessarily the answer. People say to trust God. But, he won’t do the billing. He won’t argue with the insurance companies. He won’t make sure there is dog food and that the property taxes get paid. He won’t even sweep in and fix the bigger problems. Are they all financial? No. There’s the filthy, falling down house. Money would help, but it’s not the complete answer. Energy and physical health would help, but they won’t solve it all, either. I cannot turn back the clock. I cannot become me again. I cannot pick up the lost threads of my life. Much like a lost blog entry, that is gone.

I cannot tell you the answer because I don’t know it. I can tell you the experience, but only in faulty words. I’m supposed to be the healer, and I’m the broken one. There is no one to go to, no place to rest. There is no sabbatical for the self-employed therapist. Hell, there is no sabbatical for any therapist who doesn’t have a lot of their own money to pay for it. I need solace. I need a place and a way to heal. But, I can’t see how that can happen.

I weep for what I’ve become. I am ashamed of who I am in so many ways. I weep for what I lost, what I let pass me by, what I never got to be or to experience. I weep for my life. I weep for it all.

And, then like something crazed, I stop up the tears. I get dressed, I work, listening to others’ problems when I feel so completely disconnected to myself, to the world.

I’ve been lucky this time around. I have had moments, just a few, where I felt an easing of the depression. It’s been rare, but it’s been there. It almost makes me want to weep more because I know there is such a thing as a life without this weight, without this depression.

My weeping comes in the morning, when I first wake up, when my guard is down. And, then instead of being able to cry all my tears and rest, I have to go to work. There are no arms to hold me, no one to watch over me while I fall apart. Yes. Thank God. There are my dogs, but I worry more about whether or not I’m taking care of them. But, they are there. Tears. No tears. Walks. No walks. They are a presence, the only constant in my life. But, there is no safe place for me really. When that clear light of morning breaks me from sleep, all there is is a broken woman.

I have no ending for this story at this point. I have just the sorrow, and the expectation that tomorrow will be another day. Perhaps I’ll weep. Perhaps that will help me heal or that will wound me further. Perhaps I won’t weep, but will feel the call of the tears like the distant roar of the ocean. I’ll feed the dogs. I’ll get dressed. I’ll see patients. I’ll try so hard to “be” the therapist and care about their concerns. I’ll make efforts to solve the most pressing problems, but my mind won’t be tamed or easily focused. I’ll scramble. This is my life right now.

Can this depression be lifted? Depression always has its times and seasons. It does go into at least some level of remission eventually. Maybe another medication can work. But, another chunk of my life is gone, given over to this illness. More time passes me by, more people and relationships and things I wanted and dreams and…….more me……is lost.

This is living with depression. I’ve done it long enough that I am not shocked by it. I do what I can to function in the world, but I don’t feel at all part of that world. I feel locked in my own hell. I know all about depression and how it works. I know what I’d tell my patients to do. I’m trying to do those things that I think will help. But, the clock ticks and more of my life is gone.

Does joy really come in the morning? Damn. I’m waiting for that morning.

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~ by Janice Holladay on November 19, 2012.

2 Responses to “Weeping in the morning.”

  1. I think crying helps in a way. I’ve done enough of it since my mom was diagnosed with cancer and then after I lost her. Some people cry, others don’t. Either is fine, it’s who you are. I wish tears didn’t come so easily for me. I wear my heart on my sleeve and I wish I could cover it up sometimes. I hope you can find joy in the morning.

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