DIARY :: September 6, 2017 :: Many Happy Returns
I am a little bit notorious among my friends for being weirdly private about certain things, despite being a real chatterbox about everything else. Probably the weirdest of these are a) my continuing depression and b) my crippling sadness. I say weird only in that I've made any number of comics about being depressed-- dealing with it/failing to deal with it et cetera--over the last 7 years. But if you were to ask me when the last time I had an even semi-frank conversation with a friend about how much daily pain I'm in, I would have to say that I can't even remember one. Occasionally, if I'm dating someone, I might make some reference to it, depending on how much that person wants to know about me; but I promise you there'll be a joke in there pretty quick and a subject change almost immediately after that.
Why is this the case? I don't know. When it comes up, or when a friend does the "no how are you REALLY" thing, in my mind I think "I don't want to think about this right now." Because all the time I'm NOT talking to that person, or some other person, it's probably ALL I'm thinking about. And it's unpleasant. It's like sitting in an uncomfortably warm and never relaxing--and always filthy--hot tub. Smelling the steam rising from your own sick body. Existing only in that cloud, a cloud no one else can possibly ever enjoy being a part of.
So in that moment, if pressed, I say "I don't want to talk about it." Because I don't. That doesn't mean I shouldn't talk about it. It doesn't mean that I don't know I should be talking about it. But in that moment, I am enjoying my moment of respite, of escape, and in order to think about it I'll have to lower myself into that shitty hot tub again.
Anyway. I thought hard before making and posting this incredibly depresso comic. But I know there are many other people like me out there, soaking in their own shitty tubs, and feeling increasingly alienated and unapproachable by the rest of humanity. We're social animals after all, right? We crave and require contact with other humans, and lacking that we wither into ourselves. If you're reading this and understand where I'm coming from, first of all I'm sorry. I'm sorry for both of us! But there are things that can be done, there are options available, there is a ladder out of the hot tub. You'll still be soaking wet and covered in the grossest water ever, but you can't stay in there all the time. We both can work harder to get out of these circumstances, we don't have to just throw up our hands and let inertia carry us along until we finally stop moving. I don't know what the answer is, but staying there in that World's Worst Jacuzzi isn't it. If you ever need to reach out to someone, my email is over there in the sidebar. I would love to help if I can, and if I can't I'll at least listen. Let's take care of ourselves. I'm 43 now, I guess it's time to start.