Friday, April 21, 2006

More TMI

Keeping this blog reasonably current has turned out to be quite the tightrope act for me. It's not that I don't have anything to say -- on the contrary, my problem is more along the lines of having way, way too much to say. Sooooooo much to say, and all of it more than anybody wants or needs to hear about me, my problems, my neuroses, the deep, dark, dangerous thoughts that keep me up at night and the shallow, petty tantrums that make me a pain in the ass to live with.

Some folks have tried to suggest that my "artistic" temperament could be managed with the help of medication. Been there, done that, got the PROZAC and NEURONTIN and CELEXA drug company coffee mugs to prove it. And while three years I spent trying this pill and that weren't a waste of time, by any means, they did teach me one thing about myself: great wisdom through painful experience is an inside job. In other words, the answer for me isn't medication. Note the part of that sentence that says "FOR ME." Medication has helped millions of people, particularly those suffering from a specific form of clinical depression, and I would never knock it. But all it did for me was drive the pain underground, where it turned nasty colors and got to smellin' mighty ripe. When I finally ripped the lid off, it was quite the mess. But I'm not sorry I tried it, because it was part of my journey, and might have worked. Who's to say for sure?

This is the deal with me (And if you don't want to know the, this might be a good time to go check Anna Genoese's LiveJournal post from yesterday. I understand it's the very last word on how money and publishing work together to rule the world. Seriously. Nobody need ever produce another pixel on the subject. Apparently. I don't know. I haven't read it yet, but it's on my list.) I had a challenging childhood. Now when I say "challenging," I don't mean to compare my growing years to war orphans in Bosnia, or kids growing up on the mean streets of any inner city you could name. I don't have any illusions about what I suffered compared to what millions suffer every day. I'm just saying, there were parts of it that were pretty damned tough, and for some reason, because of the way my brain and personality are put together, I've never entirely recovered.

My sister? Who suffered right along beside me, and maybe even some worse stuff for all I know? An entirely different story. The sunniest, most resilient individual you'll ever want to meet. Tough, but not hard. Honest, but not unkind. Cheerful, but not annoying. Wouldn't know how to wallow if you dump her ass over tits in a trough of shit and sat on her. Works for Hospice, for God's sake, and manages to bring light and warmth with her wherever she goes. Basically, what I'm saying? My hero. Forever and ever, amen.

So by a fluke of genetic luck -- and probably because she's just a better, stronger person than I -- my sister not only survives our childhood, but transcends it. I, on the other hand, remain haunted. Some folks say I choose to remain haunted -- that it feeds my both my writing and my self-indulgent disposition. Who am I to say they're wrong? I've been in and out of therapy since I was seventeen, and nobody's been able to get at the root of my "illness" yet. It would seem I'm holding on for dear life, wouldn't it?

My point...I had one when I came in here...oh that when I disappear for days/weeks/a month at a time, I've generally gone to ground, like a fox searching for a hidey-hole when the hounds are on his trail. The change of seasons are particular hard on my little version of dysthymia, for whatever reason, and this year's switch from winter to spring was no exception. I'd like to thank those folks who've emailed me to ask where the blankety-blank I've hidden myself -- it's always nice to be missed. I'm back now, and I hope to make up for lost time.

Yesterday, as I was driving my daughter to gymnastics practice, I was flipping through radio stations looking for something other than news, which tends to make me cranky. I stumbled on a tune sung by JoDee Messina the lyrics of which, while as simple and sweet as can be, perfectly captured how I've been feeling just lately.

Tomorrow's another day
And I'm thirsty anyway
So bring on the rain...

I credit having somewhere to go and something to do with a new resiliency in my outlook. Before I rediscovered writing, my days and weeks had no shape, and my goals all had to do with other people. And while my family is still vitally important to me, my writing has given my world a form and my time a purpose it's never had before. I credit it, and the relationships I've made with people in the publishing community, with my looking forward to each new day and each new challenge in a way I didn't ten years ago -- even five years. Something Prozac never did for me, writing romance fiction has.

Even when the bad times get me down and I have to disappear for a while, I know I have something to return to. That means everything to me. And I feel it's worth the risk of exposing Too Much Information to say it, if only once.


Blogger Alessia Brio said...

Even your TMIs are nicely-told tales. I found myself nodding, smiling, and giving an occasional "Hell yeah!"

Welcome back!

4/22/2006 8:37 AM  
Blogger Karen Scott said...

Oh you're back at last! I thought you'd given up!

4/22/2006 8:38 AM  
Blogger Selah March said...

Oh, it would take a hell of a lot more than some bad brain chemistry to make me give up. My father always said I was way too mean to kill with anything smaller than a twelve-gauge. :p

4/25/2006 11:50 AM  
Blogger Jaye Patrick said...

Welcome back, I always enjoy your comments, and if you were mean as a kid, you aint now.

5/08/2006 10:57 PM  
Anonymous Maili said...

We all have inner demons to slay, but *when* should we slay one or all is up to each of us. Some might still not be ready by the time they go to their graves, but that's their choices. Nowt wrong with that. FWIW. :)

5/24/2006 2:41 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home