“I believe whatever doesn’t kill you, simply makes you…..stranger” – The Joker (Heath Ledger) The Dark Knight.
It’s odd how much the past influences, especially when most of thoughts and fears concern the future. Our past gives us the building blocks for our present.
I’ve been trying to analyse things recently. What do I suffer more from? Anxiety or depression? I’m honestly not sure.
It’s commonly described that anxiety is an illogical fear response to what could be, those intangible futures that don’t exist and most likely never will. It’s a disease where the symptom is ‘this might happen, but it also might not. Let your brain stew on that.’
Anxiety seems more common with me, happening as and when it wants to. It strikes me more randomly. But I often have a fighting chance with controlling it.
Depression is rarer (thankfully) but when it arrives it hits you with a suckerpunch. It works it’s way inside you and hides there, eating away anything it can sink it’s teeth into. It’ll just wear away you until there’s nothing left.
In mythology (and also the modern mythology of celluloid and comic books) there is always that one moment that elevates the ordinary person into the hero they become. That moment where things change and there’s no going back. Some sufferers have that ‘ground zero’moment, that point where they can look back and go ‘that was when it all started.’ But not me. I’ve tried in vain to find the trigger for the way I am. I’ve never been able to find it yet, I don’t think I ever will. I don’t think I have one. Perhaps I’m just genetically and chemically made this way, to feel things that little bit more, that little bit deeper.
I don’t have that point but as I’ve looked back I’ve seen what I do have. I have my scars. They’re not physical scars so to speak, they’re emotional and mental ones. They’re the ones from events I’ve lived that have marked me in one way or another. Being bullied at school. My feelings of inadequacy. Watching my parents break up and how the miner’s strike tore my family and community apart. My grandad’s passing as we were getting closer. My OD attempt. Then all the little things that scratch away at the veneer of your life, slowly wearing you down. My past is made up of my scars. But I wouldn’t be me without them. It’s a cliché but they have made me who I am.
I had my meds review with my doctor yesterday. We’ve agreed to continue with my course of venlafaxine for the next six months. I’m happy with that as I think they allow me a fairly solid chemical foundation to carry on. I still carry around my anxiety, I’m still scarred by it, but I’m in a better headspace to deal with it.
And I’m happy with that.
I resigned myself years ago that I’d never be free from anxiety and depression, and part of me wants them to stay. I know I will always have them to a certain degree and that’s fine. I can live with that. I can live with those scars and what they bring.