I’ve been through this before. You want to get mad at the situation but you can’t even manage that.
What’s remarkable, to me, is that I found my way out of it through the worst person I’ve ever met. He was the only friend I had at the time, if you could really call us “friends”. We were playing pool and I was talking about how I had been feeling over the last couple months. He said “That’s probably the kind of thing you should keep to yourself.” And I said something along the lines of “you know, when you say stuff like that it makes me feel like you don’t really care about me.” And he said “I *don’t* really care about you. The moment you become even remotely burdensome to me I’m just going to stop answering your texts.” This led to a rant on my part in which he just repeated that my problems weren’t his problems and that I had to deal with them in private or he would just leave. The prospect of losing my *only* friend was something I was scared of, so I just pretended to be happy around him. After a while pretending got easier, and a while after that I realized I wasn’t really pretending anymore. I was finally feeling well enough to ditch his sociopathic ass.
Your mileage may vary. This is not advice on how to deal with depression.
We know someone like that, don’t we, readers. So that’s why I’m no longer waiting for an email or text message. I am no use to him because I am not happy and full of the joys of spring, in fact I am explosively short-tempered and in need of sympathy, supplies of which he does not have. That much is clear. So I am not waiting for him any more, he can wait for me instead. I have bigger things to worry about and he’s not delivering any happiness, which is his sole function, so fuck him. He can sit in his little house and rot.
Thing #3: “You need a big project.”
And finally. While I was in Skype, deleting the Honcho from my contacts list for the 50th time (he didn’t unblock me, by the way, it was just Skype playing a cruel game), I had a chat with Nurse Moody, who I haven’t spoken to since he moved out of here just before I went travelling. Nurse Moody has considerable experience with depression. I solicited his advice about anhedonia. Here is what he said:
This was extremely helpful to me. Over the last few days I’ve abandoned work on the house and I’ve been trying to involve myself in small, easy tasks because they are small and easy. This has not been working, I have no appetite for anything at all, I can’t engage my attention. So I like this because it is a different approach. What I need is a new project, a big project, something that requires some planning, some physical activity and that provides for those broad brush strokes. I have always liked big projects, hence TLYW, so I just need to think of one, which is a reasonably absorbing activity all by itself.
And that is where we are up to this evening, and now it’s 11.30pm and I can go to bed without feeling like a pathetic loser. 1 Survival point, if such a thing existed.