I am a ruminant.  I allow my mind to focus on some thought, and I worry it to death.  Often, people liken this to a hamster, stuck in a wheel, careening crazily to nowhere.  Apt.  The more I ruminate about something, the higher my anxiety level shoots.  The higher my anxiety, the more frantically I ruminate, I think in an attempt to try to control something.  There is definitely a component to this kind of anxiety that makes one believe that if only one worries hard enough, obsesses long enough, one will have a talisman against bad things happening.  Not true, of course.  All that is guaranteed by this rumination is that one’s stress level will be off the charts, and the bad thing will either happen or not, just as it would have done without the rumination.

At any rate, my ruminations right now have a particular focus.  (Sometimes, they have no focus at all.)  First, the background.

I have begun to see an new psychiatrist, Dr. V.  He has a whole list of new meds for me to try, in the ongoing attempt to reduce my anxiety and improve my mood.  I have been working on Cymbalta since the beginning of December;  it is hard to tell whether my high anxiety and desperation were side effects, or if they were just par for the December course for me.  Perhaps everything would have been even worse without the Cymbalta.  I did wean myself off of it, but then decided that I needed to try it again before my next appointment with Dr. V.

I have to admit, I don’t really think that I will ever find the magic combination that will make me “well”.  (“Well” being a relative term, of course.)  So the rumination that I have been working on lately is this:  if this is the best I will ever get, can I accept it?

After many days of obsessive consideration, I think that I might just be able to accept my life this way, if and only if I can somehow believe that it is okay to let go.  (I was going to type, “give up”, but if I’m talking about acceptance, those words have no place.)  I would really and truly have to believe, based on (probably) input from Dr. V and the Counsellor, that it is okay to live like this for the rest of my life, that I am not giving up, that I am not being the bad person who malingers.  I am not really certain about what would cause me to have such a real and true belief;  at this point, I cannot envision that it could come from within me.

At the same time, I think that I would be driven truly insane if I had to live decades as I now do.  I am coming up on the anniversary of the day my mind broke;  on January 25th, it will be nine years;  in some ways, I cannot believe that it has been that long but in others, it seems like I’ve lived like this forever.  I hope that if I had the real and true belief, I could be satisfied and content.  But it is hard for me to imagine.  Some days I cannot see how I will live through one more day like this, never mind the rest of my life.

I’m losing focus here, so perhaps I will end it now.  The post, I mean.  (Obligatory black humour of a chronic depressive.  Forgive me.)  I am on the cancellation list for appointments with Dr. V until July, so I have no clue when I will see him again.  I am supposed to see him monthly, but it has been eight weeks since my last (and only) appointment with him.  NOT helping my anxiety!