I’m feeling a little sore, sad and sorry for myself.

Sore, because I fell off a fit ball a few weeks back and undid all the good work from my previous cortisone injection into the facet joints of my lower vertebrae – so today I had a repeat injection. Fingers crossed it works just as well as the first one, and this time I pay more attention to the capricious whims of  wayward fitness equipment.

Sad, because I have to finally admit I’m fat again. Not obese – I realise that – but I’m definitely fat. I’ve outgrown virtually all my clothes and I have nobody to blame but myself (and the stupid fit ball). Knowing that makes it not one iota easier. Can I do something about it? Of course I can. I could have done something about it much earlier. Will I do something? Most certainly – whether that something is sensible and sustainable is a whole other question.

Sorry for myself, because I’m struggling with depression. I’ve know idea about the chicken-egg thing and whether I’m depressed because I’m sore and sad, or sore and sad because I’m depressed. It’s tricky to tell what begins where to be honest. When my head space is not fantastic, I’m not the best person to make insightful inroads into the how/why/what/when/where of depression. My self awareness and insight is outstanding when I’m feeling great (when I need it the least), and pretty dismal when I’m feeling shit (which is obviously when I need it the most).

So, where to from here?

I’m a wildly swinging pendulum. For a moment there, I slowed the arc of the swing right down – and that was quite pleasant. It certainly made my psychologist happy and I live to please. But now I’m back on the wild ride of excessive bingeing, purging and restricting, wanting to self-harm (have resisted so far), suicidal ideation and messing with risky behaviours, and just generally digging a big pit of misery to hang out in – for no other reason than it feels wildly familiar and comforting. (Go figure – misery = comfort. Don’t worry – makes no sense to me either.)

My swinging pendulum whooshes from bingeing and purging, to eating nothing whatsoever (I exhaust so quickly at both ends of the spectrum now). From feeling hopeful to hopeless, purposeful to purposeless, happy to miserable, and all sorts of other things I can’t remember (I may have ingested painkillers to help post-injection, and they may be interfering with my thought processes…)

I’m still caught up in a lot of fears that hold me back from jumping into long-lasting recovery. I dabble in the warm, shallow waters of recovery, but never plunge headlong and swim out into the cold, deep, wild seas.

My apologies for mixing all the metaphors. I blame the drugs.

  • I’m fearful everyone I love and care for is going to die and leave me here alone
  • I’m fearful my husband will get sick to death of dealing with this shit and leave me (I’d leave me if I had an option)
  • I’m fearful my friends will get sick to death of watching me on the merry-go-round of getting better-worse, and just give up and go away
  • I’m fearful my working days are fast coming to an end and I’ll cease to contribute in any meaningful way to our little household, or society as a whole
  • I’m fearful my children will not become all they desire, and perhaps I’ll contribute to their failings
  • I’m fearful I’ll stay fat, get fatter, and never be as fit and healthy as I so desperately want
  • I’m fearful of living another 50 years and never being happy again

I’m acutely aware many people have real fears – physical dangers, trauma, health crises, financial crises, abject poverty, acute loss, chronic pain. My fears are first-world and petty, but for all that, they’re still there. I can’t logic them away. If I could – I would.

My emotional frailty is something I detest. People I know deal with every day stuff in healthy, practical, constructive ways, and I want to be just like them. I’m a keen observer – I watch and learn – but so far I’ve learned the theory, not the practice. There is always – always, always, always – a roadblock stopping me from putting theory into practice. And for many moons now, I’ve been in search of this roadblock.

I’ve gathered enough theory to write theory books (and perhaps one day I will), but knowing is not enough. It is never enough. I can read a book on how to swim, but unless I get in the water and flail about, I’m pretty much a well-read potential drownee. I most certainly would not have trusted today’s injection into my spine, to a doctor who knew all the theory of injections, but never put it into practice. Practice is everything.

Tomorrow I see my psychologist (the poor, long-suffering woman – I should take her a bunch of flowers…) I don’t even know what to talk about with her. I’ve had a massive month of moving far, far, forward, then plummeting down, down, down. What’s more useful? Focusing on the moving forward? Or going over how I managed to dig myself down? I have no idea. But a more important question is, what do I hope to gain? For 2.5 years I’ve been gracing her couch with my sad and sorry butt – taking away promises I faithfully keep for short periods of time, then falling down and leaving those promises by the wayside. At what point do I just say, Enough? Leave the poor woman alone? I don’t know. I really don’t.

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