Thursday, September 20, 2007

I was born with an abundance of inherited sadness


Well, that kind of sums things up for the last 2 months. Bonus points if you can name that song and artist.

Seriously, sometimes I feel so guilty for not being happy most of the time...I have a terrific family life, a great job with a nice boss that allows me to work at home, and plenty of food, shelter, and love. What in the world is wrong with me? Why can't I enjoy it?

I feel stuck much of the time, not in the sense of my marriage, or family, or career necessarily, but stuck, inside, on pause. I can't summon the energy to move forward creatively, mentally, physically, and I can't pinpoint just which gear is broken, if that makes any sense.

I have moments of happiness, several times a week at least. It's not that I never feel joy. In fact, it comes in waves. But I almost feel like I am observing it from the outside, not really experiencing it. And when the waves die down, it's interminably still.

This is the human condition, yes? But for me, it's unusual. I've always been more a glass half-full type, a cynical optimist. But I don't feel that so much anymore. I don't feel, period, as much anymore. I feel partly cloudy, with occasional breaks of sunshine, or even rain. But when it's sunny, it's blinding. And when it rains, it pours, and doesn't stop for hours. Sometimes days. Sometimes it's a hurricane, with lightning and tidal waves. And it's frightening.

I worry that this is just life, as an adult, with all it's disappointments and lost dreams. I worry that the not-altogether-disagreeable ennui of my job has taken its toll. But mostly, I worry that I'm possibly following in my parent's mental health footsteps. There's no shame in that, and it never occurs to me that it's an issue when it's an illness in another person. But it's so hard to try to admit to myself that I may need help.

I used to worry about my creative impulses being dulled by medications...now I worry more about cheating my family out of what they deserve from me if I don't take something...I don't know the best course, I don't know the way. I don't know if I can handle this. What if it isn't me and it's just life? If is this the way it is supposed to be? That's even more frightening.

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