This is one those times that I’m thankful that blog writing has been such a tremendous asset and a very helpful outlet for me.
Sometimes you don’t realize that you’re a powder keg until you explode. It can be an outward meltdown, or a internal reaction that just makes you shut down completely.
My depression kicked my ass this week…I started spiraling early in the week, and had my full-on meltdown/shutdown between Tuesday and Thursday. Before this week, I’d only had two previous panic attacks in my entire life. I had them on back-to-back days this week, each followed by incredible anger (emotional, not physical) then completely shutting down. It hurt and scared the person I love, and it also impacted my staff and some of my colleagues, as I was very quiet and short-tempered.
I’m thankful to have such an amazing therapist…in some ways, her demeanor reminds me of Joe Montana’s demeanor in high-pressure games when he was the QB of the 49ers. She has a very calming presence, and she helps tremendously in organizing my thoughts (which was absolutely impossible for me to do on Wednesday and Thursday). She helped me put together a health plan of action, including seeing my doctor, developing new coping skills, and finding ways to be more self-soothing with my emotions. I’m just now realizing how many “triggers” I’ve been dealing with, and how even the smallest ones have been setting me off at such a dangerous level.
I hate that depression in some ways is still viewed as a weakness. It’s not…not at all. It can be very debilitating both emotionally and physically. I’ve had a knot in my neck and shoulder for over three weeks, and I don’t question that it’s stress-related. I went back and reread my blog post from the other day….holy shit, was I spiraling….I’m not going to delete or edit the post, as it will be a reminder for me to be aware if I’m on solid ground or not.
I’m so incredibly thankful to have my wife and a group friends (some that have recently come into my life) that care and understand. I’m on the road back…I didn’t become this way overnight, and I won’t work through all of this in a single day. It’s a process, and I have faith that I’ll get through it.
Playing gigs this weekend is tremendously helpful, as I can focus on the joy of doing what I’m very passionate about. As Ryan has not yet been medically cleared to start singing again, I’m thankful to be doing the heavy lifting with all the lead vocals, as it’s challenged me to learn a number of new tunes (who knew I could sing U2?) and have fun while doing so. We played at Clyde’s in Ashburn VA last night, and it was just what I needed…a small place with a decent-sized appreciative audience. It was a great night of music, and it allowed me to really feel good about myself for a few hours. (And yes, I went by L Train…I won’t cringe anymore if introduced by my real name, but I still prefer L Train.)
An added bonus of last night’s gig….I realized how much my taste in food continues to evolve as I get older….the brussel sprouts were amazing!
To my wife and to my friends – I love you, and I’m thankful to have you in my life. ❤️