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Re: Dysthymia--Saw a new pdoc--Better visit

Posted by michael on January 18, 2001, at 14:58:36

In reply to Re: Dysthymia--Saw a new pdoc--Better visit » Noa, posted by SLS on January 18, 2001, at 10:22:23

Scott -

I know what you mean about 50% vs. 100%. It is frustrating to have had that glimpse of 100%, and then to seem to get stuck at 50%...

I'm thankful that I'm not as miserable as previously, but it is incredibly frustrating not being able to find how to get to that next level, that last step, especially when you know it's there, and you know how much easier, and interesting and fun everything is when you are there.

The only thing that I can do is be thankful for the relief the 50% provides, and take advantage of that to try to persevere in looking for some way to the get the second 50%... At least we know it's there, we just gotta find the path...

I know I'm not a fountain of wisdom regarding this... My initial motivation for writing this post was to pass along a saying that the father of a friend of mine used to say:

"Keep your pecker up!"

His father is Iranian/Persian, and that is suposedly brittish (I think?) for 'keep your chin up' (pecker apparently being slang for chin)

Not a lot to offer in the way of inspiration, but when I think of it, it always makes me smile, if not actully chuckle/giggle a little... (hope you're not brittish, or from whaterver region this little item is from, since that'd probably kill - or at least diminish - the humor)

So, for what it's worth Scott (and everyone else), Keep Your Pecker Up! I'll try to do the same... michael

> Dear Noa,
> Your post could not have come at a better time.
> Thank you. :-) :-)
> I woke up this morning not feeling as much of an improvement in my condition as I had since Saturday. I am scared. I know intellectually that over the course of time during recovery, there will be ebbs and flows of improvement (I hope). However, as you have said, this momentary (4 hours as of now) slide backward tugs at me to become sad and fearful and saying, "Here I go again." Yes, to me, it seems imminent that my remission is gone for good. I guess feeling this way and acting on the feeling helps prepare me for dealing with the crushing loss. I hope, but I don't always believe.
> I will try to better incorporate your perspectives regarding acceptance and tolerance of this illness. I have realized and accepted that it is chronic for a very long time. What I will have a difficult time accepting is the thought that my remission will be only partial. I have remained alive for the promise of 100%, not 50%. 50% will get me back to work and enable me to establish a social life - I know this. However, I want so much more. I know that there is a whole lotta’ stuff out there that can fill a life with peak experiences. I know how rich and rewarding life can be. I have seen this during my brief periods of significant responses to medication. 50% will not allow me to experience life in the way that I know is possible. It is there for others. I want it too. I want it all.
> Dear Noa, you always make sense. (Don't contradict me)! For me, your words have been very valuable. You are an extraordinary combination of wisdom, compassion, and sharing. Your gift to others of your honest self-disclosure is warming and allows others to feel safe. It also allows others to see past their illnesses and recognize that they are indeed as human as the rest of us. I just want to extend to you my appreciation for your existence and my gratitude for your effort to help others.
> Sorry for all the mushy stuff. I know that I will be rereading your post for quite some time to come.
> Thank you.
> Sincerely,
> Scott
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
> > Scott,
> >
> > For years, I swung like a pendulum between despair and optimism, but the optimism was always very precarious and fragile, so I had to cling to it hard.
> >
> > Each time I came out of a depression, I was convinced it was gone for good.
> >
> > When the depression started being more and more recurrent, and worse each time, I started to fear feeling optimistic. When I would start to feel better, I would be hypervigilant for any signs of low mood. And a bad day, or even a bad moment, would signal to me that my hope was in vain, I was doomed to fall again into the pit of hellish deprssion.
> >
> > In therapy, I have been working on accepting my illness as chronic, on bringing together these two lives I have led--the optimist who hopes/feels/wishes depression is in the past, and the desapairing depressive who feels life will never get any better and isn't worth living.
> >
> > It is hard, but I am learning to see both of these parts of myself as me, to not have the pendulum swing so drastically, to be able to move from depressed mood to non-depressed mood more fluidly and flexibly, to not have a bad moment signal the downward spiral, to not have to have the shadow of terror ruin my good days--terror of losing the progress, the hope.
> >
> > It is still a struggle, but I am stronger at this. I still get angry at myself when I have a bad moment or day, but I am better able to tell myself that it doesn't mean the remission is gone for good. And I am better (not fully) able to tolerate the idea, when in a better mode, that even this good mood might be interrupted from time to time by depressed moods. I don't like it, but I can tolerate it.
> >
> > My wish would be to be rid of this forever, but I am able to be more realistic, and paradoxically, I am feeling much better because I can accept this.
> >
> > Does this make sense?




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