Josh Vs. Depression: Day 15

“Treat others how you would be treated, unless you’re the guy living in the house to the left of mine. Screw you, you prick, and trim your bushes!”

I’m having a very difficult time writing this blog today because I’m feeling better. Depression is my muse, and she is cheating on me with some other poor bastard who also liked Star Trek V.

Even though I am not feeling sad, I am not better. I’ll go even further than that. I don’t want to be better. I want to continue to be broken – because I feel the worst when I am trying to fix myself.

I’m beginning to think that depression is actually only a larger part of a destructive cycle that occurs when a person is preventing him or herself from fully expressing who they are.

I will spend three days being depressed because something triggered me, and in the moment that I was triggered, instead of expressing who I am (crying and screaming and saying something to the effect of “you are an idiot”), I said what I had to say to survive in a communal society (nodding and smiling and saying something to the effect of “I see your point. You are not at all an idiot.”).

“Expressing who you are” goes beyond artistic expression. It could mean any of the following.
*Saying what you feel
*Doing what you want to do
*Loving who you want to love
*Hating who you want to hate
*Reserving the right to make 180-degree turns on any of the above at the drop of a dime.

I keep thinking about babies. Do they hold grudges? Do they hold anything? They scream at you one second, and hug you the next. When something negative happens to a baby, they react with their full voice and body – the reaction is merely the processing of new information (I might be paraphrasing something Seinfeld said about failure).

But when we get older, and we are trained that we cannot “act like babies” (ironic, because all we’re doing after we’re babies is ‘acting’) we cannot react to new information with our full voices and bodies – and yet, those same IMPULSES to act with our full voices and bodies are still there. The hammer has been slammed onto our knee, and we have taught ourselves to keep from kicking. But the energy of that hammer is still in our bodies – clanging around. We hold it in. It’s why I’m finding, lately, that the greatest cure for insomnia is crying.

But this is an oversimplification. If I don’t get what I want in a situation, my instinct is to scream and cry – but is that fair to the other parties? What about the notion that I am trying to be a better person – that I want to rise above hatred – that, if I feel I have been unjustly treated, and my instinct is to fight back, I will have the presence of mind to transcend these primal feelings and, instead, forgive. And so I repress my emotions in order to fabricate the appearance of civility, like everyone else.

Maybe I’m going about it the wrong way – maybe I should cry and scream more. But that doesn’t feel right to me, either.

So far, the only solution that makes sense to me is the following:

If something bad happens to me, or somebody says something to trigger me, I try to be as polite as possible, and then I go to some place private and try to let myself process it the way I want to process it. I can’t tell you the number of arguments I’ve had with people in the shower. My solution, in other words, is to be a total asshole in private. A secret asshole. That’s what I strive to be. Like Batman, but with less heroism and more crying myself to sleep.

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