I should be crushed. I have the entire data warehouse of a multi-million dollar business in my clammy little hands. Since all of my vets are on vacation, I am on-call to get the warehouse back up and running should it fail. I should be hiding under my blankets. My stomach should be roiling with butterflies. But it’s not.
I’m cutting through the stress like a fighter jet. I feel it out there, but it’s not getting in. Why? What am I doing different? How is this awesome responsibility not crushing me? I think it’s all because I refuse to dwell on the negative. I’m not letting my doubts and fears run amuck. I’m telling myself it’s all going to be ok. I’m smart and if something goes wrong, I’ll work the problem. I won’t get fired. My kids won’t go hungry.
It all seems so easy, and obvious, but it’s not. When I’m depressed, nothing rational seems obvious. It’s all hidden behind a shroud. I can’t be myself, and I have to wear a mask all day just to function. Now, I feel like I have a way to pull myself out of the nosedive. It’s pretty cool.
I started a new playlist on Spotify, inspired by Three Little Birds by Bob Marley. I call it “depression slayers”. Just one more arrow for my quiver.
This week has been pretty good. My boss left this week, I had to run the team down a man. Stress was high, but I lived through it. I even enjoyed myself. Things are really going well. Really the only thing I’m doing differently is telling myself that everything is going to be ok. When I feel myself focusing on bad things, I just take a breath and think that things are well. That’s it, really. It seems to work. Hard to argue with the power of positive thinking!
I saw my therapist today. He told me that I need to be kind to myself. I put too much weight Of responsibility on myself. I need to find the funny, mirthful guy when I’m feeling negative. Is it really that simple? Can I really just think my way out of this funk? When I stop and think, really think, about the horrible consequences that could befall me, I know that the worst is very unlikely. My brain loves catastrophe, though. It can’t resist thinking about failure and doom. So I have to step in and take charge. Remind myself that good outcomes are more likely. Ive made a name for myself. I have a reputation. I am capable of good things. So I have to just do them, and laugh at my pain. I’ve got to keep trying.
Today I woke up in a panic. Our business processes are in shambles. We are likely to miss our deadlines. As the manager, I feel responsible. I don’t feel like I’m getting through to them. Maybe I’m in over my head. I’m failing for sure. I wonder if my boss thinks he made a mistake bringing me in. Will I get fired?
This is not a great way to start the day. On top of that, my strength, my wife, is leaving town on an 11-day cruise with her mother. So I get to comfort myself. The pain is excruciating, and I’m tired. I wish I could sleep u tail she returns. I wish I could get through to the team. I hope my boss sees the good things I do. I wish I could stop thinking of easy ways to stop the pain.
I wish I was stronger. I wish I wasn’t broken.
Stupid anxiety is playing tricks on me. The butterflies left, but flocked back. I just want to go home, or I want to engage. Anything but this nebulous floating around and feeling gross. I think this is why people get so fed up with this shit. It’s not consistent. It can strike you when you least expect it, and you know how much better it can be. Talk about driving someone crazy.
Next up is another interview, and I need to make sure the team is making progress on the release. Yet I feel like everyone is judging me, waiting for me to fail. I fantasize about going back to my old team. I don’t want to deal with personnel issues.
Just…screw this. Seriously.
After dealing with the mire of anxiety and self-destruction yesterday, I found some strength this morning. I could chalk it up to Xanex, but part of dealing with depression is finding inner strength where you can. Today, I will refuse to be intimidated by my responsibilities. I will deal with my difficult employee. I will take charge of what is happening on my team and go above and beyond to try to influence others to take responsibility. These are my strengths and I will play to them. I will not think about curling up under the blankets. I’ve put on my mask already, but I may take a chance at taking it off and letting people see the real fire in my eyes.
Eventually, the Xanex will wear off. Will I make it? I think so. I have enough to work on today to help pass the hours pretty quickly. Then I get to meet with my therapist and talk to him about this week and the unexpected assault I’m under from anxiety. The end of the week is end sight; I can do this.