I’m terrified of getting better.
Seriously, it scares the shit out of me. When I read tips on how to reduce fears and obsessions the idea of any of it working makes me cringe. The coping strategies I’ve used since kindergarten give me comfort. If I take those away, what do I have left?
My depression is my most revered enemy. He’s fatally attractive. He’s also my best friend. He’s loyal, he’s consistent, and I always know he’ll be there when I need him. He keeps away responsibility and gives me a reason to degrade myself. It’s not comforting to think I could live a life without him because I’ve never learned how. If you’ve lived your whole life on the sea how would you feel being stuck on an island without your boat? I don’t want to get trapped without an escape and he’s one of my many escapes from this reality. It’s like a drug addiction; while you’re in it you can’t get enough, and once you’re in recovery you’re fully aware one more dab into your previous lifestyle can send you spiraling downward. The terrifying thing about that is you would simultaneously hate it and love it.
I have the number of a potential psychologist but I know the amount of work I have to put in to peel away fourteen years of carefully devised maladaptive behaviors will share the weight of two full time job positions. I always complain about being tired and the reply I get is “why? You haven’t done anything”. Really? I haven’t? I haven’t stayed up all night because my heart’s beating out of my chest and I think I’m going to choke on my own perdition and die twitching on the floor if I go to sleep? I haven’t spent countless hours listening to circuitous voice-like thoughts over and over again in my head like a broken record (You’re an idiot, you keep doing everything wrong, you’re hopeless, you’re stupid, you can’t do anything, you’re an embarrassment, you’re going to die, don’t get that cup it’s going to kill you, that food was probably poison)? I haven’t sat here, staring at the wall, disturbingly aware of my own existence and non-existence? I haven’t spent days, weeks, fighting off suicidal ideations or laying in bed wrapped in blankets imagining the bliss of death? I haven’t hurried back to my house after going to the corner store because I feel everyone’s watching me or listening to the stupid, anxious thoughts in my head. Oh, and I never, ever have panic attacks. And . . . and what did you do today again? Oh, went to the beach? Spent a few hours at work? Damn, you life is fucking stressful man, I feel for you.
Maybe work is stressful, I don’t know. I mean I had one job that lasted about three months until I just walked away. No two week notice, no mention of anything to one of the seven managers; I just stopped showing up. I was hired to be a cashier, not to sell five different types of credit cards and two reward cards by lying about all the specs. I worked my ass off trying to juggle all my classes and five hours spent ringing up toys at Toys R Us without losing my mind. My social anxiety crippled me but I tried my best because I just wanted to be a normal college student. I wanted to know I could make it on my own if I needed to and I failed miserably. I couldn’t speak to my managers, I looked like an ass in front of my coworkers (I literally felt them reading into my awkward posture and red face; I’m pretty sure everyone could hear my thoughts–they were pretty fucking loud in my head at least), and I couldn’t stand the clueless customers. I didn’t mind the children, it was the parents who got on my nerves.
Sometimes it’s not even my social anxiety that stops me from doing “normal” things like having a job, sometimes it’s just the fact that I hate being an elf. Like Ice Cube says, “I wanna be like Santa Claus, I don’t wanna be no fucking elf” (#HoodMentality). I know you have to work your way to the top but I just don’t do well in those kinds of situations. I’m a huge fan of routine. I have to be in control of what I do or else my anxiety is, dare I say, a million times worse and in that place no one had control over anything. I mean, they switched the fucking contents in the aisles every two or three days! No wonder no one could find anything! Even my coworkers and I couldn’t find anything! I could have ran that place better without ever saying a word. I’d just give them one of my patented death stares and they’d get to work. That’s how I’d run a business. Someone keeps running their lips or sits on their ass all day, just give them a death stare until they’re uncomfortable enough to do what I say. You’d be surprised what people would do if they’re uncomfortable enough. Like walk out on a job without any notice.
I like creative things. I have control over what I create and I want to put that to use. If I get another job, i’m going to be a janitor or something, anything that doesn’t require too much social interaction. I’ll spend the rest of my time working on my photography, on my writing, on my gaming, and on my school work, things that actually matter to me. Eh . . . okay school is only important because I know I can’t do what I want without it, otherwise I would have dropped out a long time ago.
Of course in the absence of depression anything is possible. I almost applied for a position at Best Buy the other day because I felt so good and I knew I could handle it. I was feeling great! I could do anything in the world as long as the world let me. Thank God Best Buy’s website was fucking up all over the place and I couldn’t hit that apply button. I bought some frivolous things online (I don’t know how I have money????) and now as I’m winding down to a normal level of . . . whatever . . . I can see I have a lot of work to do. All my projects, all my ideas, take so much energy, I don’t know where it comes from. I’d like it with me for the first week of classes though. I could use that extra boost of confidence.