Okay, time to reveal the truth. I haven’t actually been kidnapped by Ricky and Rocky. (They do exist though, and most of what I have written about them is true. Rocky thought it was hilarious. Ricky blocked me on Facebook. Possibly. I don’t know because I deleted my account in case he’d read the post. I also changed my phone number. And moved. He’s a very lovely person though. If you are reading this, Ricky, please remember I love you dearly and we are BFFs. Also, I have a taser.)
I’ve actually been quiet, because I was busy being depressed and I am not extremely hilarious when I am depressed. Yes. I know. Mindy Kaling writes in her (excellent) “Why Not Me?” that most funny people she knows are depressives. I one-up all of them, because I am a manic-depressive. Eat THAT, Margaret Cho and Rob Delaney! Not Carrie Fisher, though. I’ve got nothing on Carrie Fisher. Also I question existence of $deity that thinks it is acceptable to take away Carrie Fisher and leave us with all Kardashians.
(Also, read Wishful Drinking immediately. Then come back.)
My latest medication change – visits to my psychiatrist are a bit like calling a drug dealer and saying “surprise me” – has changed my ultra-ultra-rapid cycling into ultra-rapid cycling, which I suppose doesn’t sound extremely impressive, but to me it is. Because I used to manage up to eight mood swings a day (my Guinness Book of Records certificate must be in the post) and with the latest and greatest my episodes stretched to weeks. Which is very, very confusing and actually inconvenient, if you are one of those people who like “doing things”. Such as going out of the house, writing funny blog posts or, uh, anything but sitting on the sofa.
The picture accompanying this post is basically me in the previous three weeks. Except I didn’t watch TV. I read the entire Internet (well, the good bits, which doesn’t take long, because I have standards) (but I did read the entire archive of The Bloggess) (that IS a good chunk of Internet). Then I spent some time breathing. Then I spent half an hour gathering strength to go to the loo. After that monumental trip Husby alerted me to the fact he’s made lunch, so I walked the entire four meters between bathroom door and my chair within 10 minutes (Guinness Book of Records is producing another certificate for me RIGHT NOW), had a sandwich, then got so tired I needed to rest. And then I went back to the sofa to breathe a bit more.
In the breaks between watching “See Paint Dry” and wondering what the hell happened to “Watch Grass Grow” (this is stolen from Garfield, but I love it) I read a lot of books by funny women, most of whom appear to have depression and write about it candidly. But the boring unipolar kind, mostly, unlike Carrie Fisher and me. *beams proudly to be a member of exclusive club* I don’t know why I read books by funny women and not ones by, uh, funny men, but something I can tell you is that very few female comics actually write FUNNY books. And I found some sort of solace in the fact that I am not the only one out there. (Speaking of funny men, Rob Delaney is HILARIOUS. Don’t read his book. It’s not funny. There is not a single bit of it that is funny. Unless you are not a depressive. Then read his book, because while not funny at all, it is very, very good.)
Jenny Lawson’s “Furiously Happy” changed my life. No, I still do not own a taxidermied raccoon – although in this house, who knows, Husby may be hiding three from me, or even more possibly he’s not even hiding them, he just forgot where he put them. But I decided that my one goal for the day is going to shower and get dressed. And, damn it, I did that. Sometimes it would take me two hours to get out of bed, make it all the way to the kitchen, have breakfast, then rest for six hours and finally shower around 4:30pm, but then I would do THE THING. I would dress like I was going to a fancy party with Ricky and Rocky.
Most depressives generally tend to wear old, comfy clothes. So did I. A photographer friend of mine took pictures once for a photo session and commented about how amazing the stretched, old pants will be for her exhibition about bipolar. I threw those pants away 30 seconds after she left. (Then changed into somewhat less old and less stretched ones.) Until a few weeks ago it dawned on me that if I am going to take a shower and put on clothes, I don’t have to put on the same ones I just took off (i.e. pyjamas, stretched Nike pants bought in 1999, etc.) I could put on something else. And this is how I managed to spend most of one day on the sofa, almost entirely immobile, wearing a kilt and celtic shirt. The day after was Leather Pride chez Ray. The day after that? Punk attire. Because, and this is seriously not something many depressives realise, it takes approximately the same amount of time to put on a really nice top and really nice pants as to put on old pyjamas. I would also spray myself with a bit of perfume from Sonoma Scent Studio (check them out if you’re in the US!) because I’m worth it. And also because it takes five seconds.
Somehow being depressed while wearing a kilt and smelling of forest in the spring feels a tiny, weeny bit better than being depressed while wearing pants that a photographer adores because of how terrible they are. It doesn’t make me undepressed, exactly. It just makes things this one percent better. And so does Husby when he comes over to cuddle a bit. Even though it means he’s doing the active cuddling because I am busy staring into space. (Which makes me the cuddling bottom. Hohoho.) And so does drinking really nice tea – and do you know what – if you bought 10 sorts of tea at some point, it takes the same amount of time to make yourself “Turkish Apple Pie with Cinnamon” as “English Breakfast”. This is, of course, once you made the trek to the kitchen, switched the kettle on, took some rest, switched the kettle on again without standing up because your rest was a bit on the long side, then stood up, poured the water in, sat back down, gathered strength and embarked on the thrilling journey back to the sofa. Just me? NO. NOT JUST ME. (Except, possibly, “Turkish Apple Pie with Cinnamon”, because you might be into Rooibos and I am not going to judge you for that. You do you, girl.)
In the last few days depression started slowly subsiding. Again, as an ultra-ultra-rapid cycler – think Lance Armstrong without the performance-enhanc… oh wait, lamictal. Just think Lance Armstrong. Anyway, I am used to depression changing into hypomania like *snap*. NOT to the process taking four days. So I am used to going from “can you switch on the marathon on “Watch Grass Grow”, Husby? Thanks” to “I am going to clean up everything while running on the treadmill, talking on the phone AND writing blog posts”. I am definitely not used to “I am going to do my back exercises!!!!! All 26 of them!!!!” then five minutes later “actually, four is better than zero, and now will you please bring me my sofa”.
I think I am good now. Judging by recent developments, I should be good for at least a week or two. I’ll try to do what I did last time, which is write posts in advance and set them to auto-publish. But can I promise anything? No. Other than that I will never be boring, and Husby’s life is probably never going to be the same for more than three weeks in a row. I suspect he married me precisely eight months ago (yes!) for entertainment reasons. Most people only have one spouse. He has at least three. The only problem being that he never knows which one he’s going to see tomorrow.