A couple of Sundays ago I made my weekly trip to the grocery store. I was not feeling well, so my weekly dealing with the idiots that seem to think that it is alright to have a conversation in the middle of the baking aisle while others wait for them to move their asses, was even more enjoyable. Luckily the week's grocery list was short, so I was able to get done in less than an hour. When I got home I was exhausted, and I spent the rest of the day sitting on the sofa either reading or watching TV--I spent a lot of time watch the NFL playoffs.
I was sick. It does not happen that often--maybe once a year, and I am usually able to work through it. Not this time.
The next morning I got up, and went to work. After about I hour I realized that I was licked. I went home and planted myself on the sofa. Wound up taking a long nap in the afternoon after I had watched a movie in the morning, and was in bed by eight o'clock.
It has been a long time, about two years, since I have had to deal with depression. And, it was always kind of hard to explain to someone what it felt like being depressed--especially the physical aspects of what it felt like.
When I was sick (I am actually trying to get over it) I did not have a bad cough, nor did I have any major issues with my sinuses. Essentially, my whole body ached and simple tasks wore me out. This is how I felt when I was in my deep depression all of the time. Every day was a struggle to just get through without submitting to the urge to crawl into bed and sleep the day away. Yet, at the same time, despite being completely worn out, I often felt if difficult to sleep.
This past week was an all to real reminder of my depression. A reminder that I never want to go through it again. It has been a somewhat tough winter so far in terms of my exercise routine, and some of my pants have started to Due to being very busy with my painting business (for which I am very happy about since this is the slow season for most painters), and the craziness of the holidays compounded by the recent illness I have not had much time nor energy to exercise. Since I was feeling much better I spent 45 minutes on the treadmill yesterday and 40 minutes on the bike trainer today. It was the first time that I have ridden the trainer all winter (I hate the thing--riding a bike to nowhere), and the first time on a bike since before Thanksgiving. I feel much better--have to keep it up so I can get ride of some of the extra winter weight that I have put on.
About a week ago I went to to grocery store with my daughter and had a feeling that I have not had for quite a long time. I was, for the entire time, thinking about money--how much does something cost, can we afford it, will spending too much now make us broke at the end of the summer?
One of the major catalysts for my depression was our lack of money. I was always worried about it, and the anxiety that went along with it was often very hard to deal with at times.
One of the realities of having a painting company is that at times, especially if you are a small company, you will have periods when you have no work. This is especially true when you are just starting out. I was lucky when I started out in that I got a few really big jobs that kept me busy from relatives, and I was able to get several small jobs to fill in the gaps. My luck has run out.
I knew it was coming, but I wish it had come at a better time. We are almost always on a budget during the summer. my wife gets a big check at the end of school year and then nothing until late Aug. to early Sept. To most this does not sound to bad, but the problem is that most teachers get paid 26 checks a year. For some reason the school district that my wife works only pays 24 weeks a year. It is the same amount of money, it is just that we get used to so much money a month, and then she gets to less paychecks during the summer--the time when you wish you would have tons of money.
So, now I have not had a call for awhile, and I am trying not to freak out.
Gary Greenberg, who wrote Manufaturing Depsression has a new book titled Book of Woe: The DSM and the Unmaking of Psychiatry. I have not read it, but seems like it will be a very scathing indicement of the DSM.
If you have read my past posts, you will know that I am not a fan of the DSM. I recently saw a segment on the news which stated that coffee withdrawal has made it into the new DSM. Not sure if it is full-fledge psychiatric disorder, and I do mistrust the media's dissimination of medical news--they never bother with the details.
Well, just thought that I put this information out there in case anyone wanted a good summer read.
It has been a long time since I have written. I have been very busy, which I guess is kind of an excuse.
In the past I have argued depression is not necessarily a disease. If you look back at my posts, you will not that I am in no way trying to claim expertise on the subject. I once believed that it is a disease. It has been turned into a disease my the APA, so that our "disease" can be categorized and easily fixed with a magic pill. If you want more on my opinion on this issue read later posts.
Well, recently I read Tyler Hamilton's book on doping in professional cycling and his time riding with Lance Armstrong. He did not hold back and was not kind to his erstwhile friend and ex-teammate Lance Armstrong.
I found the story very interesting, but the one thing that really stuck out to me, that might not to the more casual reader, is Hamilton's admission that he suffered from depression. He does not go into great detail. But, he mentions that when the cycling authorities began beefing up the testing of banned drugs, and especially once he was caught he was severely depressed.
Once he comes clean and moves to Montana, away from all of the stress of his former life, his depression subsides.
It seems to me that this once again demonstrates that depression is not so much a disease as it is a inability to effectively deal with life's constant pressures.Enjoy life, Peter
I hate doing it, but I do it anyways.
We have not gotten a lot of snow, which means that I could ride. But, it has been very cold, and I have limits on how much I am willing to withstand in order to get a ride in. I generally like it to be at least 40F. We've had some warms days, but I have been working a lot. this means that I will not get home until right before it gets dark.
So, my only alternative is the trainer. I could use Wii Fit, but that seems to only be beneficial to individuals that are seriously out of shape, or that only want a light workout. So, I don't use Wii Fit, which brings be back to the trainer.
So, I get on the bike and spin. It is very boring and the trainer is loud. The one advantage is that I get to listen to my MP3 player while I ride. I hate it. The only advantage, as a cyclist, is that I will be in better shape when the warm weather arrives.
However, there is the more important advantage. If I do not exercise, I fear that I will get into a funk. At the very least I know that I will put a bunch of weight on, which will most definitely put me into a funk. So, I attach the bike to the trainer and I spin, spin, spin and go nowhere.
Getting better, and staying that way is not easy. I had to do things, and continue to do things, that I knew would be good for me, but I did not want to do. I had to do the taxes that I put off for two years, I had to get out of bed and keep my mind active, I had to find an alternative to meds, and know I have to get on the damn trainer and spin even though I hate it.
The good news is that we just had a huge snow storm and tomorrow I get to get outside on my snowshoes.