Journal Entry: July, 2008 (three weeks post diagnosis)

After yesterday’s euphoria (the hopeful effect of an increase of medication), I thought, if this is the way I’m supposed to feel then I’ve been depressed for a very long time; I thought, if this is the way everyone else feels, then what have I been missing all this time? The grip of my obsessions were like strong hands around my throat; vaguely familiar hands determined; patty-cake hands.  But yesterday they loosened, fatigued by their own doggedness, they let go as a whistle floated past my lips like the sharp squeak of a slowly deflating balloon.  I saw light for the first time. There wasn’t that constant dullness. In one night my life had been rubbed free of tarnish and shone as though it were new: sparkling like a new silver tea service.
Last night was fitful.  I wasn’t sleepy when I retired though I was extremely tired and the meds kicked in rendering me dopey. I laid awake wondering when my eyes would close, wondering if the next day would see a marked improvement over yesterday. Once I did fall asleep I kept waking at two-hour intervals and needed to use the restroom. I awoke to the smell of fresh coffee which Nick was kind enough to brew, but I felt like the Golden Gate Bridge encased in fog.

Again, today was disappointing. I had blue moods; not quite the deep azure of days past, but not Nick’s sky-eye-blue either.  I felt listless. I pushed myself to work on my blog and again experienced difficulty in navigating through the myriad choices of photographs, layouts and information. I became exhausted quite quickly and felt tension in my head. I realized finally that though I had shown improvement, I was not healed.

I’m a problem-solver by nature and not prone to patience. Get them in, get them out. No problem is ever to great. I can solve anything. Except this damned disease! And it’s in a place I can’t see or touch or feel. It’s up there, back there, behind my eyes, under my scalp, between my ears. I can’t scratch its itch. I simply rub my forehead trying so desperately to relieve its grip like you’d soothe a Charley horse or tired feet.

And so I sit tonight again fearing my bedtime. Wondering if sleep will overtake me quickly as it did when I was a child. My mother used to tell me that the last thing you think about before you fall asleep is what you’ll dream about. I’ve been thinking of sunny days when I laugh and enjoy the loves of my life and am happy.  Disappointingly, the mornings have always come up a bit short.

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