Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Peachtree, Depression and a few other things

We are 5 days from the Peachtree and I did 3 sets of jumping jacks this morning and did a heavy workout to prepare. I don’t usually run a week before the Peachtree but I’m debating if I should run a mile tonight on the treadmill. I have this spot on my foot that concerns Andrea and my Aunt Susie so I finally made a dermatologist appointment after months of procrastinating. I feel like I have enough issues. Why do I have to add to the plate? But I know it’s the right thing to do.

My dad’s back and leg are feeling better so he might be up and walking today. That’s exciting. I know my mom is thrilled as is the couch which is now indented to fit him perfectly any time he lays down.

I want to take some time to explain how I feel when I’m depressed. I waited till it was too late to get help so I’d like to help anyone who suffers any of these symptoms. I feel like my life is meaningless. I feel like I don’t want to get out of bed and that no one likes me or wants to hang out with me. When people do invite me to hang out, I think they do it out of pity so I decline the invitation. I stop shaving. I stop trying to clean myself up. I feel like I’m stuck in a well and no matter how hard I try, the well gets deeper and deeper. I stop doing things around the house and keep to myself. My eyes look empty and my voice sounds like it is in slow motion. I do not communicate. I just walk away and cope poorly. These are some of my symptoms of depression. The worst symptom is when I start wishing I could delete myself from the world because I feel like there is no hope of things getting better. I think about death. I just want to disappear and feel less shame and sadness. Depression is a life-long battle. Just when you think you’ve got it licked, it returns in full force just like the life-threatening lung disease I’ve had since birth. Willpower doesn’t beat depression. Finding a program that works for me does.

I took a picture of Ethan by my old house the other day. It was kind of cool to see him sitting in the same backyard that I used to hang out. It was interesting looking back at my old yard. I remember the baseball games we used to play. The sewer was first place and the driveway was home plate. The weeping willows were second and third base and they were both gone. Every now and then I miss the past. I miss the innocence of youth. Sometimes I look back and think how I would have done things differently. I think about how I would have handled the childhood traumas better. I would have been more open with my parents about what was going on and how I felt. I can’t change the past though. I can only use those incidents to remind me of the questions I need to ask my children to make sure that they are safe.

I changed out my 10 gallon disgusting fish tank for a 25 gallon tank so now I have a 20 gallon, 25 gallon and 38 gallon tank. Yes, I’m finally done on the tanks. I enjoy it. It’s my hobby and watching fish swim by is very relaxing for me. I wonder if it relaxes them too to see me sitting there watching their every move. Sounds creepy I guess. I know it might seem like a strange hobby but I’m not going to change it if it works. It has definitely brought my blood pressure down. One day I believe the kids will enjoy it too instead of Avery trying to catch all of the fish with the net and Ethan banging his hands against the tank and saying “Hel-lo!”

I have gotten a lot of e-mails from you guys that the blog is really helpful because it’s raw and honest. It will continue to be so and I thank you for your positive comments. You might hear things about me that disappoint you on this blog but understand that I’m not proud of everything I’ve done in my life. I’m learning to be proud of what I’m doing to prevent these issues from ever happening again.

I saw Brian McCann at My Friend’s Place in Duluth today. He said he remembered me from Wish for Wendy but I have a feeling he might tell everyone he remembers them. What’s he going to say “You? Nope, not a clue. See you at the next game.” Not a good way to sell tickets. Still it reminds me of Wish for Wendy about 5 years ago when I got to ride in a car with rookies Brian McCann, Kyle Davies and Blaine Boyer. It was pretty cool. Brian has now been an All-Star every year. Kyle came back to Wish for Wendy two years ago and Blaine and I still talk via e-mail from time to time. It was kind of cool to say I met Brian before he was famous. I think my sister asked him to set her up with Jeff Francouer then.

Andrea and I take the kids to the pool a few times a week. Ethan is getting more comfortable with the water every day. It’s pretty cool to see Avery swimming and diving off the diving board. The scary thing was that she was giving me swimming tips the other day and she was right on the money.

Speaking of swimming, it reminds me that it was about a year ago that Andrea and I did our first triathlon. She absolutely destroyed me and I was really proud of her. I get e-mails about how inspiring it is that I beat cystic fibrosis. Look at Andrea. She has beaten 2 things: multiple sclerosis and thyroid cancer. I thought I was going to drown during the swimming part of the race so that freaked me out. After that though, I did finish. I remember being a kid and sitting there while my friends competed in swim-a-thons to raise money for cystic fibrosis. Now, here I was swimming in a triathlon. I trained for 12 weeks, 4 of those with a swim instructor. I basically had to learn how to swim again. I will probably do another one someday.

I’m having dinner with my buddy, Will, on Thursday night. I am really looking forward to it. I haven’t seen him in a while and it will be our first get-together without our daughters in some time so we can talk without having to spell out words.

I didn’t get into the World Cup much. I’m not a huge soccer fan. Absolutely no scoring reminds me too much of high school. Ok, this is why I love Andrea. She can deal with my humor. Speaking of sports, how bout them Braves. I’m really excited about this team. Even McCann told me they’re having a pretty good year…I’m sure moments later he filed a restraining order against me but that’s nothing new. For those of you who know me, I’m a huge Braves fan so I am really excited when my team is in first place. That’s probably why I’ll never be a Thrashers fan.

I miss Emily. She is in Israel for a few weeks. I know she’s having fun though. Happy 40th to my brother n law Alistair. Oh, my softball team had our 10-game regular season winning streak snapped yesterday. I went 2-for-3 but it wasn’t enough as we lost 10-8.

Good luck to all of my friends having babies this week and next. I think I have about 5 or 6 friends that are due any day. Good luck to my friends battling their own health issues. May tomorrow be even better than today.

Well, that’s all for today. Stay strong.

Best Wishes,

Andy…Fighting every day so that every day is less of a fight

1 comment:

  1. Andy, your description of depression is so realistic. I have not actually experienced it, but I watched my son Jeff go through those same stages. It is frustrating for those around you to see that kind of pain and not be able to help in any way. I'm so glad that you can see it for what it is. That's the only way to cope with it and get beyond the hopelessness of it. We all have questions about the meaningfulness of our lives, but some days just have to stay in the present and live it and maybe it will speak for itself.
    Glad to hear that your dad is doing better. Please give him (and Eva) my love.