I was feeling all snarky and negative today, as I am wont to do and so was going to post this missive I crafted about crappy songs on the radio. But, on the way home I started wondering why. Why do I have to be so negative? And snarky? And sarcastic? Why can’t I be positive? After all, I really have nothing to complain about. Right now I have a friend who just lost a beloved pet, a cousin who was in a horrid accident a few weeks ago and is now undergoing numerous surgeries and rehabilitation, a few friends who are depressed (aren’t we all?) and the list goes on and on. Everybody already has enough negative, let’s bring the positive! For me, this is so much easier said than done, but I am going to try. Every year I tell myself that, and then I end the year huddled under a blanket hiding from the giant, black rain cloud that is my thoughts. Granted, it could be because winter is at the end of the year and winter is cold and dark, which usually nourishes the soil on my grump causing it to flourish and blossom. Anyhoo – things to be positive about: I’m not dead yet. Okay, really, that IS something. It is! You, over there, snickering, shut up! About 6 & 1/2 years ago I peeled my fat ass off of my couch (where I had been camped out for roughly 5 months), peeled off my dirty pajamas (that I had been wearing for aforementioned 5 months), got myself to the doctor and managed to croak out “pleeeeaseeee… helllllp me” while reaching out with my cold, bony hand like someone dying of thirst in the desert before collapsing in a heap on the exam table (have I mentioned that I tend toward hyperbole? well – warning, hyperbole all up in this bitch). She hurriedly prescribed some Wellbutrin and 3 weeks later I was fine. No, I was perfect. I was happy and talkative and not calling in sick to work! I stopped punctuating sentences with giant sighs, I no longer ate junk food from the moment I awoke until the moment I slumped off to bed. Really, the change was amazing. And totally necessary. And out of fear of returning to my old ways I kept taking it for 6 & 1/2 years. I have suffered from The Depression for most of my life. I think it came on with adolescence. At times it’s better, at times it’s worse, and at other times it’s much much worse. I’ve done therapy, I’ve done other drugs, I’ve done exercise, I’ve done journaling – some things help, some things don’t, some help for a while and then stop – you get the point. At that time Wellbutrin was the thing. Then about a year ago it kind of… lost it’s luster. I wasn’t fully depressed like before, but I was having tiny inklings of old bleakness. Then I started becoming obsessed with death and dying. Like, obsessed yo. I’d worry all the time that my parents were getting older and they were going to die and then I’D be old and why did life have to go by so fast and what would it be like if The Husband died or one of my siblings and what is it like when you die, what if it’s just nothing, I don’t want to die. I know that occasionally, as humans who have the unfortunate knowledge of their mortality, we all worry about these things occasionally but I was seriously consumed by these thoughts. And then there was the worrying! The constant anxiety about everything! Money, marriage, work, the situation in Darfur, bombings in Iraq, money, money, my fat ass, money, work – on and ON! Up all night sometimes! Plus I was getting totally aggravated. Actually, aggravated doesn’t cover it. I would just snap into rage like The Incredible Hulk and want to cut people at the grocery store or in traffic – “Anjeanette SMASH!!”. And one day I thought “hey, I wonder if this is because of my crazy pills?” – so, I looked it up, and sure ’nuff, it is. I would link to some information, but it’s all blah blah drug talk and then they try to play it off like it’s rare and that it usually only happens to folks who are using it for smoking cessation, not for my depression, but ANYWAY – this was supposed to be about being positive, not about my crazy pills. The point is that I quit, cold turkey, because I didn’t want to get so obsessed with death and dying that I killed myself (the thought almost crossed my mind. almost. don’t call the authorities), nor did I want to get so angry that I judo chopped someone in line at Albertson’s. And the constant hand wringing was getting on everyone’s nerves. So I stopped, and like a week later I was sleeping like a baby and I haven’t really thought about death until just now. Except once or twice when I though to myself “hey, I haven’t been worrying about death lately” – so the lesson is, I’m alive and that’s something to be positive about. And the other lesson is that crazy pills can be a slippery slope. They’re obviously warranted in some situations and I’ll probably end up on some form of them again at some point in my life, because, let’s face facts, I’m nuts. And now that I’ve completely derailed myself, I’m going to wrap up in some sort of animal skin because it is COLD tonight in P-town!