Tuesday, February 28, 2012

"So how are you?"

I had a really good day today. I didn't do anything special, just taking Zeph to the library and swimming pool, having coffee with a friend, and the usual household stuff. It was such a good day because I didn't once think that I'm a shitty mother, or worry that my friends will have finally realised how useless I am, or sit and stare at the walls, or cry. I suppose it's a bit sad that days like this happen so infrequently that I notice when they do.

This picture was circulating on Facebook, and when I saw it I thought 'Yup!'


Only some of the time will I answer "Fine" to that question and it really be true. My brain doesn't work properly. I have depression and anxiety, which is a lovely combination. Some days I don't have the mental energy to do anything much, or the physical energy either, sometimes. Sometimes I just can't bear to socialise, I can't make eye contact or stand the subsequent panicking about whether I said or did the wrong thing. This leads to my standard of 'fine' or 'good' being somewhat different from 'normal'.

For many years I've also had trichotillomania, which is a compulsion to pull out one's own hair. Sometimes I've ended up missing a lot of hair, once having a bald patch the size of the palm of my hand. It's a difficult thing to explain, but the feeling of pulling out hair can be very soothing - I used to self-harm when I was younger, and I wonder if the two are related. Of course that really doesn't help with the anxiety (well, it kind of does, but only temporarily...) since it gives me something else to worry about, whether people have noticed, if friends are deciding I'm too weird to hang out with, and so on, or with the depression, as it gives me something else to feel bad and guilty about.

I've been vacillating over writing this post. I'm scared that people will think differently about me, but I'm tired of feeling like I need to pretend that I'm always ok.
So, how am I? Sometimes I'm not doing very well, sometimes I'm fine. And sometimes, like today, I'm pretty damn good.

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