Saturday, June 18, 2005

What IN THE HELL is wrong with me?

Yesterday: a trying, emotional day.

As you may have previously read or gathered, this week or so has been sprinkled liberally with fits of crying jags and self-pity. Tears on Howard, and on the too-small-couch in front of Lilly. Fits of semi-unfocused anger and panic and unchecked misery resistant to the highest percentage made cupfuls of Wild Turkey Rare Breed Bourbon. In moderate consumption, of course.

Well, yesterday sucked (for the most part). The usual fuck-I-don't-want-to-get-out-of-bed beginning. Followed by the cups of coffee, wandering around the apartment, shushing Lilly both verbally and with appeasing stroking. Then the email. Then the Stats Check. This morning's music consisted mainly of my The Bloc Party CDs and The Walkmen/Calla split.

Then, I'm suddenly running late.

At work, I can feel the tears just below the surface. People ask me if I went out, tell me I look tired. I laugh them off with vague references to no AC or noises of the Neighborhood of a Thousand Basketballs and Dog Poo. I hate being in the grips of depression because it fucks with my ability to speak. I go blank. I can barely speak above a whisper. One good thing about Retail for the Depressed is the amount of trite and repetition of the typical day. I can just go through the motions of the sales, still work on an acceptable functioning level, issuing the usual responses and questions required to make the sale pleasurable for the customer, and the stock jokes work every time (unless I've helped them before...oops); all the while, I'd rather be curled fetal-like in bed. You can do all that and still dwell and attempt to work through whatever the current trigger that's bottomed you out.

I haven't been this bad for a while. Shit! Elizabeth Wurtzel graduates from Harvard, and goes on to write for New York and The New Yorker, as well as a novel or two, but I can barely look for another job or reply to a good friend's email or phone call. I feel tired and exhausted, like after playing a full game of soccer as a child.

At some point, I sort of stepped back and observed myself. When in a deep depression, there is this interesting feeling. It's like half my mind isn't even there, I feel like half of Myself is floating somewhere else, hidden. The detachment is interesting in that you almost start to believe you are actually invisible. That you could step up on the counter, quietly, and stand there for 15 minutes before anyone would notice in the crowd. The struggle is to not let your voice break, your lip quiver, to cry.

I didn't make it.

I am told that our former EVIL Assistant Store Manager Fannie is fucking coming back in the position of Store Manager (maybe July 15th?). My world is officially falling apart. This ontop of everything else sends my mind spinning like a screaming tornado: I chew an entire Clonzepam.

Around 3 (maybe), while talking C.P. in the stock room about the return of Evil Fannie, I suddenly excuse myself and rush to the restroom where I sat in the stall and balled my eyes out. Shoving toilet paper in my mouth to silence the sobs. Jesus, what a wreck...why couldn't I just be sneaking in here to feed a cocaine habit. After a minute, I washed my hands and face came back out. C.P. pulled me deeper into the stockroom and asked me to explain. I told her that my depression had come back full force and that my Jungle Ghetto clinic didn't seem right and that...oops, *squawk* "too many people!" and back to the restroom stall. Now, I am not only crying, but cursing myself.

"Fucking get it together, man. This is bullshit, this is bullshit, this is bullshit!"

I rub my eyes, take a few insanely deep breaths, and head out again. C.P. is "looking through her locker"/waiting on me. I squeak out "can't talk, must work" and race up the stairs. She follows. I find myself snapping my fingers and breathing deep, like an athlete getting ready to take the field, pumping themselves up for battle.

I hit the floor and turn my head to C.P. saying "Shiny, happy, smiling faces, right?"

Luckily, business picked up, and I concentrated on work. Say the lines, wrap the crap, ring the credit cards. Smile, nod, ask, wrap, show, follow, point, pick up, carry, smile, ask, ring, wrap. At some point, a note got handed to me. It said: "Do you want me to call my therapist to ask about resources? I can beep her." Has it really come to this? I declined, I had numbers at home.
Then McDonald's for dinner.

The rest of the night went a bit better. Me, Amber Chunky Globes, L.S., and The Croatian Gyration Sensation, N.S. and Amazing G. Most of my favorite coworkers being together helped. At one point, The C.G.S. and I rapped most of The Beastie Boys' Paul Revere. That was fun and put a smile on my face. I must have looked down because earlier she seemed intent on buying me a cookie or something from Starbucks; but, I declined with a no thank you and a smile.

On the way home, I thought I'd call my parents, but remembered they go to Lake Erie on phone there. Once I get home, on the couch with Lilly watching Lettermen and O'Brien, I actually feel okay. My depression seemed to break, like a fever breaks and the sweating and aches stop and some clarity comes back. My apartment sometimes acts as my sanctuary (sometimes my prison), a physical representation of a mental protective wall holding up against my Psychic Demon Hordes.

A single beer and a bag of popcorn later, I go to sleep.

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