Sunday, March 23, 2008

Living the Dream

Did you ever have one of those nightmares when you're in danger and want to run but can't move at all? I never have.

But that's what I'm feeling like right now. I just can't move.

I've been wanting to write a post for a couple of days, this idea "dream paralysis" or whatever it's called has been lurking in the back of my mind. And yet I can't seem to move. Even to type, to get the thoughts out. Even as I type, right now, I feel my heart pound a little, my anxiety up.

My body is leaden. Everything is too much work. Schoolwork. Bathing. Finding something of substance to eat. Going to the store. Getting out of bed.

My school was on break this past week, so there was no place I had to be (except for therapy on Tuesday). Friday, C and I went into town for lunch, and went to the mall, the bulls-eye place. Halfway through the mall I could have just gone home. I had wanted to see if I could find a nice ring with the boys' birthstone -- just something simple, as a little memorial to them, but there was really nothing. No one carries much in the way of garnets. Nothing, appropriate, anyway. Maybe I should just get a couple of little bands, or something, with no stone.

So, I think this is probably a good indication that I made the right decision to stay in school this semester, just to have someplace to go. A schedule to follow. A commitment to keep. But I feel like I'm getting so little out of it. this is my doctoral program -- I should be invested in it, I should be up to my eyeballs in work and research, and planning papers and going to conferences. But it's all I can do to show up, let alone really dig into the work.

I'm having trouble caring about it, my field of research. This thing I can't shut up about, normally, I just can't even think about it right now. I know part of this is depression, and grief. But who knows how long it will last? And what if we want to try for more kids? Will I be sick all the time again? Will I wind up on bed rest? Will I even care about this freaking degree?

There's a part of me that just wants to give it up. Just drop the classes I'm taking and give it some time, until I feel better, and more invested in the work. But I can't do that. We can't afford to live on just C's stipend and financial aid. I would have have to work, likely at something mindless. That would just piss me off daily. At least where I am there are people who care about me and whom I care about, people doing good things. Opportunities to use my brain, occasionally.

It just seems to have lost meaning for me, I guess.

This is so depressing. I don't know how to end this on an up-note. I'm so tired of feeling so down all the time. And it's all I can write about. All the time. My writing teacher would say to just keep writing. Get it out so you can get past it. I'm so tired of feeling this way, and the idea of feeling good feels alternately scary (anxiety-provoking) and/or impossible. When I do have a good moment, it feels a little freaky, like suddenly I'm aware that I feel okay, almost normal, and that freaks me out. Like if I feel good for any length of time, I'm going to get smacked down with something else, something bad. Very healthy.


Okay, I'm going to try to get up and find something to eat. Right now there is a small cat curled up against my leg. Another dozing in her perch at the window. The sun is making the sky bright, and in the distance, I think I hear birds. Maybe spring is coming after all.


luna said...

I've had very similar feelings about work. I used to care passionately about my work. I'd have to since I work with a nonprofit on a salary less than what I could make doing something else. but this was what I wanted to do and I got so much from it. but all of that changed. and now it's just like I'm going through the motions. I just don't have the energy to give anymore. I'm still good at what I do, but my heart is not invested. I've found that with lots of things-- I have less energy to invest in insignificant things too. I still enjoy watching a silly movie or reading a novel, but I can't deal with a lot of trivial matters...

and I know what you mean about feeling idd the minute you realize you're enjoying something. it doesn't feel right. but it is. it doesn't mean you miss your boys any less. but I find that distance disconcerting too. the time and space that pulls you further away...

luna said...

odd is what I meant

CLC said...

It's hard to care about anything, which is weird, when you know you used to care about some things deeply. I wish I could say that you will care for your work and research again, but I really have no idea. I am constantly wracking my brain thinking about a new career and then it dawns on me that there is nothing I want to do. I think that's depression.

Oh, and stay away from the mall. It's a seriously bad place to be when you are trying to get over losing your babies, given that's all new mothers seem to do- shop and parade their children around in their overly expensive strollers.

Antigone said...

Perfect analogy. I remember in adolescence having nightmares about trying to crawl away, digging my fingers into the sidewalk trying to drag myself along. A heavy and steady wind pushed against me making it near impossible to make any progress.

Different context but similar emotions now. I have a lot of inertia, and its going to be tough to get going again.

Carrie said...

I also lost interest in everything. I gave up my hobby which used to take up a couple of evening and every weekend. I also gave up friends, just stopped being around them. As for work, it just seemed so pointless.
I know none of this helps you, I just want you to know you are not alone, I think it is normal, if not nice, to feel this way.
I also worry about feeling better, if something goes well it then has the potential to go badly wrong and knock me off my feet. I don't think this is healthy either bit it is what it is.
I hope you manage to keep going at school. Although you may not be committed right now everything else will seem equally shallow.
Try not to be so hard on yourself. It is ok, maybe even necessary to feel this way. You have been through such an ordeal, it will take a long time to feel anything like your old self again.
Thinking of you.

niobe said...

I like to say that, after the twins died, work was the only thing that saved me. I had no interest in friends or family. I just sat in my office with the door closed and finished project after project at a pace that, looking back, is hard to believe. If I was thinking about something else, I didn't have room to feel despair....

c. said...

I used to feel so motivated by my business. It used to drive much of what I did everyday. In the immediate aftermath of C@llum's death, I thought it would be the thing to help me get through my giref. I'm thinking of selling it now. I want no part of it anymore and so many other things that kept me going prior to November 1.

The analogy is spot on. I have had those nightmares. I am surely living one now.

c. said...

Oops. GRIEF not giref.

Janis said...

I wonder if you may find something appropriate here:
I have nothing to do with that biz, just a link i picked up from a loss forum I am on.
Just wish there is smth I can do...