I can’t handle a bunch of screaming pre-teen girls

I can’t handle having a house full of kids for a sleepover, and it takes a lot of convincing for me to agree to having more than 1 extra kid at a time. So when girl midget approaches me about having a slumber party (was there ever an event more poorly named?), my initial reaction is NO. Inevitably, I’m asked Why Not, because what possible objection could I have for not having 5 pre-teens in my home for a sleepover?! God, Mom, we’ll just take over your living, dining, and kitchen, never sleep a wink, scream regularly, and make a terrible mess for which we will feel no responsibility to clean up. But mostly, I can’t adequately explain my No to my child.

How can a child understand clinical depression when most adults don’t either? It’s much more than being sad. It’s like an ever-present inertia, and I’m trying to force a gigantic cruise ship do a sharp 90 degree right turn. I never succeed in that turn, but I turn the ship enough to stay on course. I hold onto the wheel with all of my force, make the turn, then loosen my grip a little. Bit by bit, I loosen my grip, veering off course slightly but still generally going in the right direction. Soon after that, I find myself too far off my path and I have to make another dramatic turn to: get myself to work, work at my job, clean the kitchen, get the laundry started, walk the dogs, scour the bathroom, and do anything besides sitting or laying down, staring at a tv, a wall, my phone, or a book. I doubt my midgets would be able to understand that analogy. I’m not sure I understand it. I’ve felt this way for so long that it feels unfortunately normal. I talked to my doctor last week about all of this and nothing came of that discussion. So….I guess I have to keep pushing for a remedy? Depressed people are not good at pushing, not most of the time. Sporadically, yes, but not when I’m in a lull.

Little things help perk me up: an iced coffee, a walk with my dogs (if I can get myself out of the house), quiet time with one of my midgets, dinner with husband, working on a crochet project with a well-written pattern, surveying my tidy home that I just cleaned, or creating a vegan food item that looks and tastes good, and is eaten by members of my household.

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