I woke up today to grab my phone and reach out to talk to someone. Just to hear another voice or see another person would have been great. Do you have those days? Where you feel like absolutely nothing matters? Yes- you took your meds all week long. Yes- you went to therapy and got frustrated there was not a “How to Get Better Quick” manual. I would love a manual that tells me how to get better as quickly as possible so I never have to deal with the CRUSHING sad that depression is. It can be the sunniest day outside and everything else is absolutely PERFECT- then you cry yourself to sleep. Perhaps you start listening to sad music and you just start to spiral into self-hate. Man, I wish I looked like her, I miss my long hair, I wish I had a family who understood me, I wish I had people who got this mess, I wish I could be… insert anything you want.
Depressssssssssed. You think it would have better emojis on our phone because we use it all the time. “I am depressed over the Raiders losing (Though you could have guessed it)”, “I am so depressed that I just had a bad break up”, and my favorite “F**K I want to die, THIS WORK OUT SUCKS.” I just think in my head am I doing sad wrong? In order to be sad, I should be super cute, makeup on, showered, and taking selfies in my cutest outfit with a depressing ass quote. Biiiiiiiiish, you trying to tell me its that easy to just snap out of depression. What am I going to therapy for it is so ridiculous?
Probably because my therapist is where I got to dump all my shit. I just go there park it for an hour on this really comfy couch with this little dog in the corner that sometimes farts and stares at me like, “Man she is screwed up.” Then I do the following I am going to break it down for you. I also added songs that I feel represents each of these moments.
HOW TO THERAPY LIKE A BAMF:
Bullshit and ask each other how we are doing to make sure that we have been being honest with each other about where I am mental health wise. He says, “How is your mother.” Just kidding he is not Freud. He never blames my issues on my Mother surprisingly or my Father which is more surprising. We do this weird banter thing where he reminds me of what he did this weekend which is always kayaking. I am not sure if he is lying to me or not. Probably since he is my Hawaiian hippy therapist.
This is the part he allows me to rant about the presidential elections, people that I am currently angry at, Donald Trump (now), how hot Paul Ryan is (#sorrynotsorry), and a bunch of policy issues I find annoying. Then he tells me, “Are you sure you do not want to go into politics?” This is basically him telling me that this portion of our conversation is ending. He sometimes will nod in agreement and laugh with me. I generally rant for four minutes with his subtle come back at one minute. At this point in therapy, I have moved from sitting on the couch to taking off my shoes and laying on the couch. More Freud jokes are not necessary.
I make sure I mention all the issues really super fast so I can try to dodge questions really quick. He tells me I need to slow down and actually talk about what my feelings are. I then ignore the question for a bit.
I basically sit with him (sometimes I cry or yell). Then we talk about the issues that I am facing. It used to be on a scale of teenage angst to suicide where are you? I used to be a solid 3 out of the 10 scale. Then we talk about inpatient and try to remember all the coping techniques. I always ask, “Is there coping techniques for assholes?” I answer my own question, “Yes, marijuana.” Then he says, “Just kidding.” I nod. We work on the issues through conversation and he weaves his opinion gently in. I ask for advice and he never gives it to me straight. He makes me WORK THROUGH MY OWN DAMN ISSUES. I get really discouraged because there is absolutely no manual. I also get pissed off when he tells me to go face the people who make me mad. To confront them for their shit. I also have to work on being more in control of myself. Of course, this has been a struggle for a people pleaser like me. Then I admit to three things: Have you followed your plan? Have you stuck to your sense of self? Have you followed your head or your heart?
You want to know the worst part of this session, the fact that sometimes I do not even know the issues he is pulling out of me. I get super upset and want to leave. Then he reminds me of how far I have made it and how nobody is supposed to bring me down. That my existence is freaking spectacular and I have “big shit” coming for me.
I have not a clue what will happen to me in the greater speck of this life, but I know that I just cannot float through life anymore. It already makes me mad when I do that for fun. Depression is sleeping in until noon, depression is hiding from your friends because you do not want to be seen. Depression is watching shows to avoid yourself. Depression is feeling like you should end it all right now. Depression is dropping anger bombs on loved ones because you just want to feel one damn thing. Depression is healable. Depression is livable. Depression is beatable. Depression is treatable. Depression does not have power over you if you take control.
We talk about goals and we also talk about how much time we should spend time working toward them. We talk about hobbies. Usually, I want to leave by this time because it is really hard and I just do not want to put up with his smartass anymore. I am so happy he has laws where he cannot talk about my breed of crazy.
At this point, we are bidding farewell and talking about the future and plans. Then I get a little boost of energy and I want to keep talking. I love this part of the therapy session because I start to think about my future as if it will really happen to me. I look back and realize that in his magic voodoo powers he has taught me some stuff. We spend the rest of the time just going over what plans I have to make sure I will be safe.
I do this in my care. This is usually turning on some music and just sitting there for a minute and processing. I will take notes. I will brush up on some breathing skills if I am anxious. I will go over my goals and make sure I am still following them. I will go over my issues and make sure I avoid them (this is my avoidance, I have since stopped.)
Then I usually turn on my music and talk to myself on the way home. I will have a funeral for someone that I need to let go in my life. I will sit there and realize past arguments. Past relationships that did not work out. Whatever I need to do to make sure I am on track.
Therapy Hell No’s
Do not lie to your therapist it will not help you get better.
Do not hide your feelings everybody gets sad and down.
If you are feeling suicidal speak the hell up you deserve life.
Do not forget what you learned and apply it always.
Do not skip sessions, I did that and it set me back.
Make sure you have a good relationship with the therapist
Make sure you feel comfortable
Make sure they make you comfortable
If they say something “weird” or “off” get another opinion (one dude called me agoraphobic because he thought I was scared to drive right after a car almost hit me in his parking lot.)
Remember you grow out of underwear and you grow out of therapists.
Just talk to them like their God, because they don’t talk back either.
I would like to thank my therapist for putting up with my shit for the past ten months or so. I would like to thank my dear friend Dez for reaching out to me during IOP when I was at my lowest point and for being a cheerleader, and I would like to thank my best buds for actually reaching out and making sure I was okay when you did not have to. When I was at my worst you gave me hope before I stole that light from myself. My inspiration for this piece was the lovely M. Boles who encourages me to tell my story and encourages others with hers every day.
Stay sexy and live.