Tipping Point

Most of the time, me and depression have a long-standing uneasy truce. I recognise it, respect its existence, but in general I try to keep my most erratic errant emotions in check using all the coping mechanisms and other psychological tricks of the trade I’ve learned over a lifetime of mental confusion and distress.

Mapped out mathematically, graphically on an x and y axis of up-and-down emotion to linear time, life for me to date has been a parabolic undulation of relative highs and lows in perpetuity, a never-ending oscillating sine wave of sentient surfing. And as with real surfing it’s all about maintaining balance, and when I do fall off, keeping my wits about me and my head above water for the duration.

So on the surface I go about life as normal as it can be, getting on, getting everyday things done quietly and slowly, not making a fuss or drawing attention to myself but looking the part. I enjoy these good times, when life feels easy and I’m on top of the world. But there’s inevitably a point where I feel myself start to wobble, when I feel myself having to fight frantically just to continue to keep myself upright.

This is my own personal tipping point in life. Sometimes I can manage successfully to right my balance and stabilise my sure footing all by myself – hoorah, misery averted! But at other times I know there’s no stopping my roller-coaster crashing descent into darkness, gulping and gasping for air in drowning desperation.

These days I find that once I’m falling, it’s easier if I stop fighting and flailing. I feel a rush of relief and release from all that steely tension, then nothing. I simply let my body go with the flow, let my mind drift, metaphorically hold my breath and trust in life on autopilot to take me back up to the surface again when the time is right.

I’m feeling the same thing right now, five weeks into lockdown limbo. I began it all as positively as I could in the circumstances, but right now am currently having a huge wobble. My head tells me sensibly this is where we need to be in life just now, but deep down my heart is silently screaming, pounding in panic and pained with antsy anxiety.

I feel myself once more tantalisingly close to my tipping point. I feel myself holding on tight, tense and taut, wavering and waiting to see which way it goes. For now it feels about fifty-fifty, on the absolute cusp, hanging precariously in the balance…

Weekly Prompt: Tipping Point

9 thoughts on “Tipping Point

    1. I feel ok when I’m out, but the effects don’t last once I’m home and the worry crowds in again. I’ll get through it like I always do, but it’s still a struggle… 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Ruth I am with you on this. I feel it too. Yesterday was my own personal tipping point. Both myself and my husband were there. It could have gone either way. Into eternal oblivion, or re-surfacing. We re-surfaced, kind of. With geat difficulty. We only did it though by disobeying rules, and going out for a drive in the car. No possible harm to anyone else or to ourselves as we did not open wibdows or doirs. But it was enough. Enough to get us rebalanced. For how long I do not know. I feel it will hit us again. And then I will want to scream out again. If it helps any Ruth, I understand – and care.

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  2. I hope you can hang on Ruth. I’m telling myself that, in the grand scheme of things, this is one crummy spring out of 65 (so far). I’m not sure how long that line is going to work.

    I’m keeping a good thought for you.

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    1. Thanks Dan – my elderly dad’s not at all well just now (in hospital for just under 3 weeks) and so it feels a bit like time is of the essence where he is concerned, which really doesn’t help matters much. I can put my life on hold for this virus, but dad’s failing body is still aging regardless and of course his dementia doesn’t ever improve. I’d hate for anything really bad to happen to him before any of us can see him again… like another stroke, or worse. So all we can do as a family is sit tight and wait and see what happens next 😦

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  3. Oh, Ruth, I am so sorry to hear of your long term depression and that it has once again reared its ugly head.

    I feel fortunate that depression has never affected me, I occasionally have the odd low day but it passes quickly. I cannot imagine how it must feel to wake up to deep melancholy day after day.

    My heart goes out to you and I do hope this passes quickly. 🙂
    Oh, and thank you for doing this challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

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