Sunday, January 28, 2007

Depression Day 4

Day 4

At seven she took the third pill. And she felt like she’d done something if not enough. She had hoped that she’d notice something even though the doctor had said it would be two weeks to a month, but nothing had changed. And it was only a faint glimmer that the doctor had said that an anti-depressant might work that got her to take the pill.

After yesterday spent lying in bed she thought she ought to eat, though she wasn’t really hungry.

So she got up and went to the kitchen, where she sat down and stared at the cupboards wondering what to eat. The thought of cereal nauseated her, even the sugar topped ones would taste like cardboard, so she just went with the shredded wheat. She didn’t need a bowl for that. She could eat it over the sink and anything that dropped she could run through the garbage disposal. And while every bite tasted like sand, still she knew that there was enough to feed her and she wouldn’t feel like throwing it all up afterwards.

And after she finished eating she sat down and waited for a half hour or so.

Then she got up and cleaned the sink.

And after she finished cleaning the sink she sat down and waited for a half hour or so.

Then she went and showered.

And after showering she sat on the tub for a half hour or so.

Then she brushed her teeth

And after brushing her teeth she sat on the tub for a half hour or so.

She thought about combing her hair, but went back to bed.

And she stayed in bed even as the phone rang and the answering machine picked up and it was her son.

And she knew that he’d be worried, but she just couldn’t talk to him, she just didn’t have the energy to talk to anyone. And she’d started treatment so she could mention something next time he called, but talking to someone was too much for today. Hadn’t she already done enough? She’d actually showered on a day when she didn’t have anything scheduled and that hadn’t always happened in the past so maybe the drug was having some effect even though it wasn’t supposed to be working for another two weeks, but it wasn’t’ two weeks anymore. It was less than two weeks, but still more than a week so maybe she was just fooling herself since she still felt the pain and she still didn’t have energy to do anything. How many hours had it taken to eat and clean up after breakfast and she used to be able to do that and six other things before seven and now she was left just trying to get up at seven to take a pill and that pill might not do any good. So why was she even taking that pill when she just was in so much pain and everything took so much effort and she lay in bed.

She listened to the answering machine click off after her son said, “I love you.” and wondered what it was she felt for him. All her being was consumed by pain and she had nothing left for the son she had born so many ears ago.

And then the real pain hit as she wondered – what sort of mother am I that I can’t even answer the phone when my son calls. All I’m doing is lying in bed and even though the pain is still throbbing shouldn’t I be able to pick up the phone and listen and reassure my son that I’m not lying dead even though that would hurt so much less than what I’m feeling right now.

And her thoughts circled round and around like the murmuring of the tide coming in – only not so painless.

And after a few hours she realized that if she called her son would be at class and she wouldn’t have to talk, she could just leave a message, and even though that didn’t feel like enough it was something.

And so she hit the speed-dial and waited for the phone to ring praying that he’d be in class so she wouldn’t cry and make him upset, praying that he’d be in class so she wouldn’t have to talk, praying that her nightmare would be over sometime. And the answering machine finished so she quickly said, “I’m glad you called, sorry I missed you, love you.” and hung up.

And she was relieved and sad and tired and wondered what sort of mother didn’t want to talk to her own son. And yet she was too tired to spend time in conversation and wondered if she should tell him she was on an anti-depressant, but thought he didn’t need to worry about her when he was away from home and she should be taking care of him so he didn’t need to know just yet.

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