I find Christmas, in fact the whole month of December, to be very difficult for many reasons. The month starts with my deceased father's birthday, he passed away when he was only 38 years old from an aneurism. Then it's my sister's birthday, whom I have no contact with. I miss them both terribly, I feel their absence in my life every day of December.
Then it's the stress of not being able to provide that warm and fuzzy nostalgia for my family, the lack of money, and now, forever, December will be marked with trauma for me. It was on December 29th last year that I discovered my son was a heroin addict. I found the needles, the straps, cups, the bloody napkins, everything...The visuals are etched into my memory, I remember the smell, the look, the way I felt, the light in the room, everything like it was 5 minutes ago.
This month weighs on me, like a million pounds of painful memories etched into my heart. I tend to feel so utterly ineffective, inadequate, and lonely. This year marks another year that we haven't gotten our son back yet, another person I love is lost to me. My sense of loss is very pronounced. Slowly but surely I have started to dread the holidays...and over the past few days I realized I think I am sinking or have sunk into a depression. It's not an acute depression, it's a slow festering one that robs me of my energy, feelings of hope and soaring incidents of panic attacks. I am getting them again, more frequently. Sometimes 5 or 6 little attacks a day.
I think I need to see a doctor before this swallows me up. I once experienced depression about 14 years ago, it crippled me and I got out of it fairly quickly, maybe 6 months of therapy and medication. I was lucky I recognized it so quickly but I remember how black it felt. I think I am on my way back there, I don't want to go there. I have reasons to be grateful, I just don't feel anything about them. I fake every smile, every motion that looks normal.
Loss, addiction, death, time, self-loathing, guilt....all are soul destroyers. I am a scrappy and smart person, I need to find my way back to being myself. Surely there is more to who I am and what my life means than the sum total of my loss and failures. God, I hope so...