December, 2014: It was a stormy, winter day on the Pacific Northwest coast. (Is there any other kind? Yes, just keep looking.) My husband and I were celebrating my birthday weekend at our favorite campground in our new trailer. (I JUST told you we are in the PNW. A tent isn’t helpful on the coast in winter.) Between rain bursts, the sun would shine, and we would break from binge watching movies to walk around the mostly vacant, puddle-laden campground, and breathe the cool, salty air. (Yes, movies and camping go together… like corned beef and cabbage on rye.) It was the most wonderful birthday experience I’d had since my “let’s go camping in the snow” birthday weekend a few years previous… until it WASN’T… *dun dun dunnn*
Okay, let me back up… as I mentioned in my first blog post, my husband is a WONDERFUL man. He is stable, responsible, humorous, and kind. He has a firm grip on his sense of reality, and is a details-oriented kind of guy, very thorough. He likes to have a plan that makes logical and financial sense before he acts on anything, including purchasing new pants. Now, what if I told you that I am the EXACT OPPOSITE of this? (By all means… laugh hysterically… I’ll wait…).
I, however, am a dreamer. I live for the “what if” kinds of conversations where I create whole new worlds in my imagination. It’s like window shopping, but for the soul. Imagining ALL the possibilities makes my spirit expand and embrace all the potential and promise of the future. I picture myself doing new things, enjoying new adventures, and exploring the vastness of the universe. It’s THRILLING! (Side note: I would like to own a Galaxy Class starship named Enterprise. I will admit that I mostly just want it for the transporter, replicator, and holodeck. I’d totally let my hubs captain the dang thing. He’s a better driver anyway, but He would probably be annoyed by how often I demand that we stop at Risa to attend a luau or Moon Festival, and he’d probably be worried that I’d accidentally get tangled up with the Ferengi mob in some interstellar blackmail after partying too hard at a seedy, tropical nightclub… (Contemplates sneaking the shuttle from the shuttle bay in the middle of the night before anyone knows what’s happening.))
So, we are at the beach, I’m enjoying another one of my “what if” dream sessions as we stroll through the campground, when suddenly, my husband pulls out his reality knife and STABS my dream bubble to death!! (I also have quite a flare for the dramatic. If I could figure out how to insert videos of myself telling you the stories of my life directly into this post, I’d win an Emmy… a Daytime Emmy… or whatever you win for starring in a soap opera, because my life is like a slow-moving saga of daily life minutia being blown completely out of proportion, and accompanied by terrible acting.)
I ended my birthday weekend in a state of extreme sadness, (and with too many whiskey sours), while the creeping darkness of depression devoured my soul. (In his defense, my husband didn’t know he had just crushed my soul, because I never told him how much I love to dream, and how much his discomfort with my dreaming negatively affected me. Now that it’s been a few years, and I’ve learned a few things, I realize that I was the one responsible for the condition of my soul, not him. (We’ll explore this topic later.) He’s not a bad guy. I’m just a terrible communicator. Back to the story…)
Over the course of the following weeks, I sank deeper into the blackest of black blackness I had ever experienced in my whole life up to this point. My soul had shriveled up under the weight of crushing depression. I contemplated running red lights at intersections just to see if I could make it through without dying. I pictured myself driving full force into a brick wall or off the side of a bridge. The joy of dreaming had been crushed. I felt like a hollow shell, having to pretend that I was okay when I just wanted to die. How could I live life without the anticipation of “what if?” How could I face spending the rest of my life with someone who didn’t understand the joy of dreaming and creating and imagining simply for the sheer pleasure it brings to the soul?
After struggling like this for several months, I decided to visit my doctor. She was so not helpful, although, had I been a cracked-out drug addict, her approach to my well-being may have worked out in my favor, yet ultimately leading to my tragic demise…
“I’ll give you any drug you want as long as it gets you out of my office faster so I can see the other sniffling, sneezing, coughing, stuffy-headed, fever-ridden, hypochondriacs that are piling up in my waiting room. Oh, and you should probably see a shrink.”
“Thanks, doc. I appreciate your compassionate and understanding bedside manner, but you can take all those pills with their nasty side effects and shove them right up the tops of your legs.”
Stay tuned for the long anticipated conclusion of the darkest season of my adult life, and the inspiring birth of the Real Me. (Oh thank God! I can’t handle any more sadness.) (Me neither.) 😉