I had to confess the one thing that I hoped I would never have to confess again. I fought it though. I think I fought it longer than I care to admit. Sure, the long naps, intermittent fitfully sleepless nights and incredible sugar orgies should have been a sign, but denial flows thick in my veins.
I had to confess that my depression might be coming back. I actually said it out loud to my sponsor. After I sipped on my coffee for forty-five minutes and asked her about her life with feigned interest. I looked attentively at things she showed me on her smart phone while I hoped the minutes would tick by and I wouldn’t have to spill my guts. But she knew. I know she knew. She probably knew months ago. She’s one of me. She has spent years on the bipolar express and tried to outsmart the pendulum as it swings violently from superhero to angel of death.
The words came out in a round about way. “I think I’m a little distracted, just a little off the beam.” That darned beam. I didn’t know what people were talking about when I first came into recovery. I looked around the musty room and saw no evidence of a beam. Eventually I got it. And then I even got on it.
My good, grounded, sane sponsor reassured me not to jump to conclusions as she pulled me back from my bleak future. “Just focus on right now.” I mentally erased all thoughts of excruciating middle school fights with my daughter who hadn’t entered sixth grade yet, all visions of Christmas stress and tacky Halloween costumes and instead tried to focus on the July heat and how the sweat droplets it created on my cheeks perfectly masked the tears I couldn’t contain.
I hate depression. I like recovery – except when I’m depressed. Because that is when I have to do the things I don’t want to do. I know I have to share about my feelings – makes me kind of want to vomit. I know I have to tell my husband that even though I think he can’t tell that my sarcasm and irritability are out of control, that I actually love him despite my cleft tongue; I have to tell him what he already suspects – the despised depression is trying to take over his wife again.
But this time I won’t let it. Ahhhh… if only it were that easy. I don’t want to let it. But I don’t want to do what I have to do to keep it from swallowing me up. That’s the nature of the illness. So I guess for now, I’ll just try to stay focused on staying in the moment. The moment of just off the beam. I’ll do my best to reach up and keep one finger on the beam – or is it in the beam – like today’s 24 Hour a Day reading referred to? Either way, I’ll try to stay in close contact with the beam until I can get back on it comfortably.
Because I will. In the meantime – I’ll remember the rule of 62 and try to read some funny stuff. #AnneLamott is keeping me company today.