Monday, December 29, 2008

When the words don’t come, what do I write about? The fact that I can’t write, I guess. It’s been a hell of a ride lately. I’ve struggled mightily with my own brain, which sometimes seems like it’s trying to eat itself. But it’s telling me something, and I’m trying hard to listen while not taking it 100% seriously. That’s the thing about depression; you can’t trust what your thoughts are telling you, but your brain is the only way to interpret the world. It’s like being blind – you know that there’s a world out there that you can’t see with the organs that are designed to see it. You have to see in other ways. In depression, you have to figure out what’s going on in the world using tools other than your normal understanding. You ask friends, you read books, you try not to make any major decisions because you don’t know what’s true.

Mainly I’ve been using all my energy just trying to stay balanced in the storm of emotion, trying not to go overboard one way or the other. Trying to stay compassionate and open, flexible and forgiving. And having, honestly, pretty inconsistent luck at it.

Relationships are hard. People are complicated (including me). I’m sometimes naïve about people and what they want and need. And my brain thinks it knows how the world should be. But still, I’m trying to learn and not be reactive when things don’t go the way I think they should. It’s a lesson in acceptance, in being in the moment, in letting go of expectation, in unconditional love, and it’s a hard won lesson. Sometimes, like today, I feel like I’m getting it. And sometimes, I feel like it’s something I’ll never fully learn. That the world isn’t here to make us happy, but we can be contented and joyful no matter the circumstances, if we learn to appreciate what we have rather than mourn what we don’t. In the last month I’ve grappled with a lot of pain and confusion that are nobody’s fault but mine, and also had moments where I catch glimpses of the joy and expansiveness that can also be mine, if I so choose.

With all of this, it’s been hard to find the time to write.

Best wishes for 2009 and may all beings be at peace.

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