Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 16 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

a pitiful pot

This morning I was up to my eyeballs in self-pity. My right hip hurt. That was the beginning. I dove into the pot. The thing about self-pity is once it starts, the end-point is limitless. Like compound interest on your high-rate credit card, the pitiful possibilities are exponentially vast. The pity was blinding me in no time at all.

My hip hurt. Therefore I re-tore my labrum--the hip injury which has already twice been surgically repaired. Therefore I will not be able to run this Saturday. Therefore I will have failed to attain a goal for which I prepared with 15 weeks of committed work. In addition, my hip can't be repaired again. Therefore I am facing the end of my running career. Therefore I will lose a huge piece of my identity and joy. Therefore life will lose meaning and purpose. Therefore I will get fat and lazy. Therefore I will lose my running community friends. Therefore I will be isolated and lonely. Therefore my depression will get worse. Therefore I will drink again. Therefore I will end up a sad, lonely, pathetic woman without a purpose to live!

WHEW! And I only gave you the shortened version of one of my scenarios. Pretty impressive, huh? Each poor-me scenario began at the same place--my hip hurt, the only reality contained within each imagined path. I had scenarios tracing backward, literally years into my past--a self-pity connect-the-dots starting and ending with my hip hurting today. And I had scenes projecting forward, like the one above, which moved me from a sore hip to the gutter in no time at all. What can I say, left unchecked I have a very active brain!

Sitting here now, after performing some PT techniques on myself and then swimming a mile, it amazes me how hyper-defeated my self-pity thinking can be. I have the knowledge and skills to get myself out of that icky pity pot, but today there I sat, soaking in the mire and the muck. While sopping up those mucky thoughts, I was aware I was there. I knew it was a dark, dirty place for my brain to be, but I floundered there anyway. Despite myself, I was no match for the pity pot.

Poor me. Poor me.

photo courtesy Daphne Barnett


crackedheadblog said...

I'm rubbing off on you.

Michelle (The Beartwinsmom) said...

Note to self: Make sure I read these types of scenario posts when I'm not so tired and actually think that this is REAL. I was freaking out thinking that this was the end of your marathon career!

Okay, see me up at the top of the pit with my hand outstretched? Time to reach and take my hand, dear.

etta said...

You guys are great--You both had me laughing out loud! Thanks-

Shiv said...