writing about coping.
I keep trying to write about depression and failing, because everyone is depressed right now and there is already so much despair.
So I’ll keep it short and to the point.
The planet burns. A global pandemic runs rampant. A global oligarchy continues to pull all the levers, and destroy grassroots movements before they begin. I am a woman who is sad, frustrated, and doesn’t know what to do with the remainder of her life, and everyone else is pretty sad and frustrated too.
I learn that there are no therapists. All the therapists are booked.
I am not in danger at least. I know this much. I know I possess the skill and endurance to wake up morning after morning after morning, slaying each day as it comes, facing the onslaught of weeks that I must conquer before I might finally rest.
And so I don’t need a therapist — at least not when there are already no therapists. I don’t need a therapist because I don’t feel at risk of harming myself or others, other than perhaps cleaning my shared apartment less frequently than I should. Or a better way of putting it — other people need a therapist far more than me.
Google is my therapist.
I ask it questions I know can’t be fully answered. I search terms like “coping with covid depression” and try to convert something along the lines of “how to cope with depression regarding real concerns about humanity” into a search term but I give up.
One day, because I know we are out of therapists, I search for self-help books. Everyone says you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but everyone judges books by their covers. And by their little blurbs and plot synopses. None look good or perhaps more accurately none feel accurate for my predicament.
I feel guilty for feeling bad when nothing is very materially wrong in my life, but at least I am not weighing down our already overwhelmed mental health infrastructure with my small problems. I do not face, individually, the tragedies that many others do. I know this doesn’t matter and that anyone can feel bad. Still I feel guilty.
It’s odd to be this self-aware, to feel something and have thoughts about the feeling simultaneously. I know I must not give in, even as I tire, day after day, to slay the monster brought by each morning. I don’t sleep well despite my exertions.
All I know is that I only have one chance at life. May as well see it through, if only to find out whatever hell we’re headed for.
I’m sorry, I didn’t mean that.
It’s my brain saying it, not me.
Sometimes I get small hints of relief:
I can’t be inspired or impressed by anything right now.
But sometimes I can just read and absorb. Maybe for later.