Sunday, February 17, 2008

Table Salt Nation

Current Mood: Feeling Guilty for Feeling like Shit

Warning: A long explanation of why I'm annoyed with people who are annoyed with me. If you don't care about that then just read the last two sentences and be on your merry way.

It's been brought to my attention on more than one occasion and by more than one person that I am wholly miserable and irritating as of late. Circumstances in my life have not allowed me to feel, and therefore be, any different. It sort of sucks that when you're down, you have to feel guilty for being down, on top of being down. It especially hurts considering that I have multiple reasons for feeling the way that I do. The past year has been one trauma after another.

Things are going on in my life that I don't always talk about, not on here and not even to most people I know. And that is on top of the things I DO talk about. All of which occurred since last February: Finding out my BRCA2 status, the break up of my brother's marriage to one of my best friends, painful kidney surgery to remove a large stone, two lumpectomies and biopsies (basically cancer scares), my sister's horrible illness and death, my agonizing decision of whether to have a mastectomy, my experience of having a mastectomy and current, ongoing and painful reconstruction. So if I'm not doing cartwheels and singing Zippadee Doo Dah with rays of sunshine coming out of my eyeballs all day long then pardon fucking me.

My sadness is not a "disease", or a "syndrome". I'm not depressed. (A term that is so over-used it has started to reach "Alrighty then" and "Yeah Baby" status in my mental list of most vile words ever said in the history of the English language). I'm hurting, physically and emotionally and I'm so exhausted just having to explain and defend myself over and over and over again, on top of everything else I have to be exhausted about.

I don't know a lot of people who have had the same experiences as me. I don't know very many people that have had their breasts cut off. I've had it up to my eyebrows with people telling me how I should feel about that, or how I should be over it by now even though I'm still undergoing the process and am in fucking pain every minute of my life. I'm tired of people telling me I need an anti-depressant when the only reason I'm sad is because I physically hurt and yet am still expected to complete all my duties and tasks as if I were healthy and feeling great. Going to work, taking care of Liv, household cleaning, laundry, making dinner, changing kitty litter, gritting my teeth through the pain, and biting my tongue when stupid things are said and done to me, so as not to add "conflict with people I care about" to my already overloaded list. All part of a day's work.

I realize that everyone has shit to deal with. I don't have the monopoly on suffering and pain. But I feel like I'm here to listen when other people hurt, when other people need a friendly, compassionate ear. I feel like I reach out to people, with emails and phone calls and help when asked. Okay, mostly emails. I'm, admittedly, not a phone person. But seriously, I would never make a person feel bad for hurting and needing to vent and just feeling sad. I just can't take this shit anymore. I seriously want to shut the blinds and curl into a fetal position some mornings. Not just because of the pain and difficulty of my life. But because I know I'm going to be hearing some hurtful comments from someone at some point in my day that's going to lead me to believe I'm not doing enough and I'm too sad and I'm apparently getting on everyone's nerves.

And then I inevitably start to panic and worry that I'm going to end up with zero friends after this experience just for being honest about what it's like. Excuse me for having feelings. Seriously. After so many years of silence, I finally found a voice. I found a way to express my pain rather than cutting myself with sharp objects, starving my body down to a frail skeletal shell of a human, or putting my head in a toilet 3-5 times a day. I thought I was expressing myself in a healthy way, through blogging and talking to friends and family. As a result, I've opened myself up to a world of hurt. I have never felt more alone in my entire life.

I am going through one of the most physically painful and emotional devastating experiences, and still grieving the loss of my best friend in all the world, my sister, and I am feeling guilty for being sad. Like I'm abnormal. I guess it is irritating to everyone. That's fine. I'm going to stop bothering everyone with my shit. Of course, not everyone has expressed annoyance towards me. But the few that have, well they've made me nervous and afraid that everyone is secretly rolling their eyes at me after every conversation and/or blog entry. It hurts more than the physical pain I am experiencing.

So for anyone I've hurt or annoyed, I'm truly sorry. The last thing I want is to drive everyone away from me for being a downer or a snooze. I'd rather be eaten alive by a trillion angry fire ants than be boring. It's not like I have a reserve cache of awesome friends waiting in the wings or anything. I'm not that cool. That's why I'm going to make my blogs private for a while, at least until all of this passes over and I'm feeling positive again.

Sorry for this rant. I know it seems like a temper tantrum. It sort of is. I hate to direct this rage at everyone. There are, obviously, so many great and supportive people who are reading this and thinking "Whoa. What in the name of all that's holy is she talking about?" And again, I'm sorry to you. There are so many people who have just been supportive and kind and non-judgemental. I am truly grateful for you. These people say, in not so many words, "You are entitled to the way you are feeling". Which is what I need to hear right now. I do not need to hear the following: Aren't you feeling much better by now? You should take an anti-depressant (I'm not depressed folks, I'm in PAIN. There is a huge difference.) Can't you drive yourself? (After I took a valium to control my chest spasms.) Yeah I guess I can drive, if you want me to risk my life and the lives of others. Sure. No problem.

I'm probably over-reacting here. I'm probably just hypersensitive. And you are probably thinking, why doesn't she get over it all already? Amy died like six whole months ago. Gwen had her boobs cut off like 3 long weeks ago and reconstruction looks like an absolute breeze. Free boob job. She's lucky! Why is she such a pussy? You are probably rolling your eyes. You are probably thinking I need medication. And for anyone who wants to suggest that or who already has...I've tried all that shit before in my life. It never made me feel any differently about anything I was going through. I just had to worry about taking a pill every day on top of all the worrying I was doing about the other crap that was going on.

I swear the pharmaceutical companies are making millions of dollars on these "medications" and it's probably just generic table salt in those little colored capsules. I've heard people say "Wow, I feel so much better", like two days after they started taking them. And I'm calling "Bullshit". And also, "Placebo effect!" It takes at least two weeks for the "medicine" to build up enough in the brain to possibly have any effect, if it will at all. That is, according to the doctors I've spoken to about it.

Anyway, if you take anti-depressants and they work for you, then GREAT. I'm glad for you, truly. But they've never done shit for me. I wish there were a magic pill that would make me smile from ear to ear despite distracting pain, ugly and mutated, nipple-less, numb-skinned, non-breasts, and unresolved grief. That would be the most awesome. But it doesn't exist or believe me, I'd be popping those things like tic tacs. Because honestly? I'm having a time. I have a bee in my bonnet. Fuck it. I have a bee HIVE in my bonnet and the whole lot of them are stinging like the fucking little beetches that they are. (And no, that's not a typo. I fully intended to write "beetches". I might be in distress, but I'm still rad enough to crack myself up with stupid yet somehow totally awesome and appropriate pseudomorphic puns).

Truthfully, though, I'm done expecting anyone else to understand. I guess that was a total pie in the sky idea to have in the first place, huh? If it comes down to losing everyone in my life that I love and/or care about, I'll be okay. Because, in case you haven't noticed, antiquated idioms are my new best friends. And they never tell me that Zoloft is the answer to all my problems. God bless 'em. For those of you that still love me or even still like me a little, I hope you are having a nice weekend. If you need me, I'll be sliding down rainbows into pots of gold and saddling up my unicorn for a nice ride in a country meadow full of poppies.

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