Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 17 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!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

It's getting a little better

Life moves on whether I feel good or not. Yesterday, despite still feeling low, I got up early to run. Unfortunately, my body did not agree with that decision. Neither, it turns out, did the weather. But I pushed out the door, which is when I realized my legs were totally dead. I felt like I was running on water-logged, dead tree stumps instead of human legs. The weather, too, was rudely awakening. Of course it was cold, but the real killer was the wind. It was gusting up to 50 mph! My heart sank at both of these developments. I was planning to run 5 miles with Puck alone before joining the track club for another 15 miles. Unfortunately that didn't seem likely given the circumstances.

I spent the first three miles of my run contemplating my planned 20-miler. After three miles, I decided my legs felt too dead and the wind was too cold and fierce to attempt 20 miles. I ran 8 miles instead. I don't know how. I was shooting for five, but once I decided not to join the track club, I wanted to get as far as I could before giving up.

After quitting, I filled my stomach, rehydrated, and relaxed with my feet up. I went to my usual AA meeting, which I would have missed had I done the whole 20 miles. Upon returning home, I ate some more and took a nap. I was praying the wind would die, but it didn't, so I stopped waiting. At one o'clock I felt well enough to try again. I headed out to finish my run.

The afternoon weather was equally as brutal as the morning crap. My legs felt better, but overall I was still tired. While running, I decided I'd shoot for a total of 18 miles. Then I downgraded that decision to 16 miles. Around 12 miles, some rough footing forced me to walk for awhile. That rest break must have served me well, because I ran past 18 miles and made it to 19 before finally calling it quits. I was whipped.

I think the trauma of losing my job, combined with the recent slide into depression, physically wore me down over the course of last week. Like most of you, I woke up tired today (and missing one hour of sleep). I had to work (at my second job), and maybe that was good. My brain and my mood behaved while I was working. Focusing on others always helps. I swam after work, but once in the pool I felt as dead as I did yesterday morning. I stayed about 20 minutes. At least I did something before coming home to collapse.

I've rested now. I'm trying to relax. I'm anticipating feeling discontent, perhaps a little angry, when I return to work tomorrow morning. My boss will be gone, so that will make it easier. I will be professional, as usual, but I'm anticipating a lot of mixed emotions, nonetheless. I'm hoping my energy won't be sapped. It's only 5 weeks to Boston. I need all the energy I can get!

3 comments:

Paige Turner said...

It may be to early for this - but I am creative - and I find creative answers for everyone BUT me sometimes! SMILE!

Go with me here -- Think outside the box!

I know you have training in the medical field - and I believe you have counseling training (may be wrong about that) - anyway - what if you could take your love of running and helping people with mental/emotional illnesses and turn it into some sort of "life coaching" thing. Bringing together the physical and how that helps 'shift' the off-balanced chemicals....

Or maybe try to get your blog published -- seems to have quite the following.

You are very cretive -- think outside that box -- just as you were approached to wear running clothing FOR FREE! there is a need out there - and you can fill it- just got to find where your skill set fits a need -- (i.e., I LOVE to organize! I LOVE to clean OTHER PEOPLE'S houses - I have always wanted to start a business doing that for folks in depression - our surroundings often reflect the chaos on the inside -- I would call it "Orgazined Chaos".

Just offering up suggestions - (that you may not want or need!) ~ Ever mentioned I have a need to be needed and "help"! LMHO!!) Take care Etta - you are safe and healthy - you are experiencing a 'normal' life bump and responding in a NORMAL manner - you are doing good!! ~ ((HUGSS!!)) Maggie

M said...

I really admire your perseverance and strength. My whole life I've wanted to be able to run...I still can barely make it a mile.

You seem like a very smart and talented person. With the same perseverance you had in your run, you'll be able to find more work. Even a little bit of hope can make a big difference, I think.

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