Thursday, November 29, 2012
Caught Off Guard
I think I knew what was coming after my recent plunge into panic, anxiety, and struggling to put a brave face on life. It was lurking just around the corner, waiting for fatigue to give it a chance to slip in like a grey cat sneaking in the door. It came on feather light feet, stealthy, silent, insidious. It is here now, whispering in my ear, quietly reasserting a cold grip, a malaise, dejection. I know it for what it is, and am usually more alert to its approach. This time it has caught me off guard. It may be the cold, the grey, the wet weather that opened the door a sliver, just enough to let in the frigid fingers of Melancholy. Maybe it is merely fatigue, I have not had a day off, down time, in so long I have lost count. So much to do, so much to see, so little time, so many expectations. I understand the old adage, "burning the candle at both ends." Sometimes I feel as if I am burning it in the middle as well. It is overwhelming. And my spirit pays the price. Brain becomes brittle, over-analyzing the smallest, insignificant details, reading between the lines, seeing dilemma where there is none, feeling hurt by a breeze, loneliness and tears threaten like a roiling storm. It is far easier to stave off Melancholy when I read the signs of its approach. I have so many tricks in my bag, so many workable solutions, remedies, therapies, but they are more a preventative than a cure. "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." It is true, and I feel it profoundly at times like this. If I can head off Melancholy, stop it where it lives, lock the door, barricade the windows, then I can regroup easily and return Brain and Spirit to a state of calm. Once inside my skull Melancholy grips me with tentacles invasive and pervasive, brutal and belittling, draining and damaging. Now comes the battle to regain control over my own emotions, sense of self, self esteem, without withdrawing from the world, as is my wont. Yes, I do have weapons to fight the good fight, but having the strength to shoulder them, the willpower to use them, the fortitude keep a brave face, is not easy when tears burn hot and threaten to leak between my lashes. I have to struggle for control, breathe in breathe out, focus, shut out the pejorative whispers. I know I will not plunge to the depths of previous winters, I have too much going right in my life, too many reasons for Melancholy to take an extended leave of absence. I know I am battling my own chemical makeup, my Nature, even my own past, but I am so tired of this particular foe rising from the ashes, even when I know it is weaker than in the past, I am heartily weary of this fight. But as always, I soldier on, let the world believe that everything is okay, that I am okay. I am good at pretending, it is what gets me through each and every episode, pretending until it become truth. I will be okay, I am okay. I'm okay. Really.