Thoughts

Dealing with depression (Part 1)

09Nov16

The Donald is the new President of the US. I heard on the radio even before the counting of votes was completed that Hillary conceded. I wanted to cry! I wasn’t sad or disappointed. I just wanted to cry. Why? I had no idea.

10Nov16

Hubby called me to say he’d be starting work at Sasol probably next week, or after. Sasolburg is more than 100km away from home. Did I have tears? I don’t think it was so much about water works but suddenly my head was filled with thoughts that brought up some fears. I didn’t want to cry but anxiety was setting in.

11Nov16

I knew my boyfriend, (*grin*) Henrik Stenson, is in the country because hubby told me so, but only after he said that said boyfriend would never come back to South Africa. Well, dear Henrik only 2 hours away from me, playing at the Nedbank Golf Challenge in Sun City. I’m going to watch my boyfriend win… Hubby said there is no accommodation.

I heard on the radio Henrik’s brief interview, being the huge celebrity that he is. He is 1 shot behind the leaders. He will win! I have to go! I have to see him.

Then, I wanted to cry.

WHAT! THE! HECK!

Something must be wrong! Oh, duh!

I almost burst out crying while talking to my close friend on Wednesday. We actually said that maybe I just need to be my old self and escape; go to Montecasino and try to win a car, or some money, or just forget my emotions and have fun. We had a huge storm so no one went out.

It’s starting to be slightly embarrassing. I need to fix this!

But, I don’t want to ignore this which is trying to surface from the abyss. I honestly don’t think that it’s good to do that. If it was, I would not be feeling what I feel now, almost 20 years later. What I did before didn’t completely heal me although it did help me forget the pain and suffering even if only temporarily.

As I wrote here, I was diagnosed with clinical depression while going through divorce. But it was ages ago. Why is it still relevant in my life?

And it was only divorce!

Background

My ex-husband filed for divorce sometime after August 1998. Our divorce was finalized in January 1999. I had moved to Johannesburg to run away from the small town in Mpumalanga where ex-husband and I lived. I left the in December 1998.

I had done some trips to Johannesburg before this and a new friend (I can’t remember how we met) had introduced me to some people, including a boy who was a friend of her boyfriend (she was married but… did she say the French don’t mind?).

Why did ex-husband file for divorce?

  • He didn’t know if I still loved him because I sometimes told him I didn’t.
  • I was (am?) a career woman, not a wife (and mother).
  • He was already in a relationship with a younger (than me by maybe 5 years or so) girl and she was single.
  • He said I was mentally unstable, a.k.a. crazy
  • I had tried to end my life but instead of dying from all the medicines I took, I vomited all over him at 4am.
  • We had tried to make it work for a year and it was still not working

We were separated for a couple of months the previous year, towards the end of winter (in the southern hemisphere) of 1997. He was having an affair with a married girl (who got divorced before us; reason – her affair with my ex-husband).

Why did he have an affair?

  • I told him I didn’t love him anymore, that I only cared like a sister would.
  • I told him to get sex somewhere else as he wasn’t going to get it from me.
  • I suggested divorce for the sake of my career. I was naive, gullible and stupid. My big boss had said that my ex-husband (he was still my husband then) was holding me back in my career. I knew he liked me, thus, I said I was stupid. And, he already had a girlfriend, one of the young girls training with us, who used to be his son’s girlfriend, the same son I had a fling with later, after I resigned and was serving my notice. The big boss had placed his son as the branch manager and dealer principal in the branch where I was Financial Manager. Small town!
  • This trouble in paradise started because he found a letter I wrote but never sent to an ex-boyfriend talking about another guy I fancied. I’m not one to cheat but I am easily influenced and family and friends did not think that my first husband was good enough for me.

Some of my people have said that I was defending my ex-husband. Perhaps… I agree that he could have left instead of having an affair.

I was convinced that I committed a crime worse than a sexual love affair because I was in love with someone else. I had given my heart to another already.

1997: Mental Health

When we were separated in 1997, I started taking prescribed anti-depressants and sleeping tablets. I was also seeing a psychologist. Although I was irrational, somehow violent, crazy, depressive and quite capable of being scandalous in public, I was not suicidal. Husband and I got back together.

1998: Mental Health

Maybe it was the fact that this wasn’t the first time I was cheated on but a year later, my depression seemed worse. I felt like a total failure. I wasn’t sure if I loved my husband then, I most probably didn’t, but I wasn’t going to give him up. He was already gone though. I was often suicidal and attempted to end it all a few times.

I went for some kind of hypnotherapy to have an understanding of my struggle to let go. I don’t remember much of it, what it was exactly, but it was meant to help me deal with something in my past.

I had to say goodbye to my maternal grandmother who died within the year of my move to my paternal grandparents so I didn’t get to say goodbye to her.

I had to say goodbye to my paternal grandfather who both died within the year of my move to the big city for college so I also didn’t get to say goodbye to him.

My Crying Game

I didn’t watch the Crying Game movie. This is purely my crying game, and it is my present. I don’t cry because anyone can walk in so I just push back the tears and shake off the emotions. But I don’t want this anymore.

I don’t want to feel like crying while I listen to All of Me, which I don’t even like because it is the song of someone I know who isn’t faithful to his partner. For no reason.

I don’t want to feel like crying as I watch my recordings of Henrik’s Open championship win this year. Is strong desire to see him reason enough to want to cry?

I don’t want to feel like crying anymore just because I am starting to remember many things that happened in my past that I chose to forget.

So, I am making a list of how NOT to deal with depression. I’m going to heal properly. I am not going to fake it. It will be real.

(continued on Part 2)
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