Friday, December 19, 2008

The Bravest Blog I've Ever Read

It's funny how the world of blogging and Ravelry and Plurk has changed my life. Before I started my blog, I had lots of projects--heck, that was the reason for starting the blog! And then I really began to investigate Ravelry, because I had joined, but done nothing with it, and discovered a million a thousand dozens of other projects I want to do. Then I started reading the Yarn Harlot's blog , which BTW is really hysterical today. (She could so be a sitcom. Yeah, "Everyone Loves Steph.") And from her blog, I got links to other blogs, like Wendy Knits, then Zarzuela, and you know how it grows kind of exponentially. I can't keep up with the blogs on my Blog List, and I haven't even put all of them that I have bookmarked in the list yet. Then through Wendy, I got onto Plurk, which is one of those "social networking" sites, so we all talk about knitting and food. Not necessarily in that order.

Almost all of the blogs I read are knitting-oriented, which makes me wonder about the other needlework I love. Are there as many cross-stitch or quilting-themed blogs out there? (Don't tell me. I don't really want to know.) But I came across one the other day, that, even though it doesn't deal at all with knitting, is now the one I check the most. It's here, and it's the bravest thing I ever read, with a large dose of black humor, which is my favorite kind, seeing as how I have major depression difficulties too.

When I read Jenn's words about her illness and problems in life, and the support she gets from her family and friends, it makes me cry. You cannot imagine how hard it is to be honest about something that's still so misunderstood, though it shouldn't be by now. I have written posts about my fibromyalgia, but haven't even touched on the depression because I'm...what? Scared? Embarrassed? Uneasy? I don't know, but I do know that Jenn does some powerful writing about her illness, her fears, and her life. She's the best kind of writer. She's honest. I can't be that honest yet. It's easier to blame the fibromyalgia for all my troubles, because that's less of a stigma, as far as I can tell.

People who know me and find out that I have major depression have told me that they can't believe it. I'm usually pretty chipper in a group (heh, Jenn touches on the Chipper Act in one of her posts, so it must be universal for us crazies.) I have a great sense of humor, especially about the absurdities of life. But people don't know that every morning when I open my eyes, my first thought of the day is a variation of, "Oh, God. I can't get up and deal today. I just can't." I hate even writing that, because it sounds so whiny and pitiful. And, to look at my life, there's no reason to feel that way. I have a home and a family and a job, and they're all going pretty well. Nobody has died recently. We're financially tight, but managing. My job isn't exciting, but it's not hard, either. So I have no reason to slide into the Black Hole, at least to all appearances.

But down into the Black Hole I go. I know some of the underlying causes, and I do need to work with a therapist, but it's so scary. And it's hard. Really hard. I've done it before, and I'd rather crawl naked through broken glass across a freshly salted highway than do it again. But I'm going to, as soon as I find out in January what our new insurance pays for. Because if Jenn can be brave enough to go through what she's going through, and put it all out there for the world to see, then I can at least make a start by going to a therapist. I don't want to. You have to be honest, and cracking jokes doesn't work with those guys. I'd rather crack a joke or two than be honest, let me tell you. I'm better at it. I've had more practice.

Anyway, thank you Jenn, for being brave enough to show the world what it's like to have an illness that people think is somehow your own fault for not just getting over yourself and getting on with it. It's not that easy. And if you want to learn to knit, let me know. I have people...and they have yarn.


Jenny from the cellblock said...


Thank you so much for your incredibly kind words.

Wow. Blessings.

Ev said...

We all have our difficulties, our own private burdens. I try not to allow my feelings into my blog as too much of my family (including my ex-husband) reads it and that's where a lot of the pain, hurt and shame comes from. Honesty is a good thing, but only in the right place, the right way and the right time. Does that make sense?

I do, however, admire anyone who can write from the heart, putting it all out there.

Daniele said...

Good for you for talking about your depression. I have panic disorder and did suffer from a full depression episode for a number of months. I was so thankful to receive help in the form of medication. It was like my life was just starting once the meds kicked in! Whatever works for you hunny - go for it! We're here and understand. :)

Jessica said...

Whoa. You put me in some seriously big company! ;)

But more seriously, it really is ridiculous for those of us who have/are dealing with depression to seem to be force by society to feel like we are being silly or weak because of it. Your experience in this life is what it is. Not right or wrong. Just what it is. Hopefully you make the most of it and sometimes in order to do that you need help. And that's not wrong or weak, that's just human.

I had major depression problems from my teens through my first year of grad school. I nearly ended my life as a teenager. While I wouldn't wish those experiences on anyone, it's part of what's made me who I am, and while I wish life had been a little easier, I kind of like me now, so maybe it was worth it.

Big hugs to you! You do what you need to do for you. That's what's most important.