Contrary to popular belief . . . I'm not depressed.
If you catch that I am, what you're feeling is my V62.82, Bereavement. I don't even have the newly touted grief disorder, which would be cool in a sick kind of way, to have a brand new disorder, fresh off the press, Complicated Grief Disorder, or Prolonged Grief Disorder, so far as I know.
We diagnose a person who has lost a loved one with Major Affective Disorder only if that person is experiencing sadness, insomnia, poor appetite, and depressed mood beyond two months post loss. If major clinical features like these disappear at the two month mark, it's Bereavement. My friend who lost his father over a year ago, is suffering from bereavement.
We call it depression if a survivor has
1. excessive guilt about things other than actions taken or not taken at the time of death,
2. thoughts of death other than feeling he or she would be better off dead or should have died with the deceased
3. morbid preoccupation with worthlessness,
4 marked psychomotor retardation,
5. prolonged and marked functional impairment,
6. hallucinatory experiences other than thinking that he or she hears the voice of, or transiently sees the image of, the deceased person.
If you have those features (you might add the loss of appetite and problems sleeping) then you're talking Major Depressive Disorder.
So let's talk about me.
Slept great last night, 5.45 solid hours, dreamed of the Black Hawks playing hockey on a black and white TV set over forty years ago. Had to have been nine or ten, but in the dream, can't tell. It's cool that when you get older and you talk about things you did as a kid, you might dream about them.
It's Friday and on Fridays I like to have dinner prepared before leaving for work. The idea is that when I get home I can just do what I want, meaning visit my mom, talk on the phone, clean, maybe even go to the movies with FD. So this morning I wake up and mumble a couple of things under my breath and stumble into the kitchen to see if the coffee's on.
I'm only writing the list below because (a) I like lists and (b) to illustrate the difference between depression and bereavement. A person suffering from depression would be hard-pressed to get all of the following done (not bragging, just saying) in about an hour, between 6-7 a.m. My wave must have crested yesterday.
(1) small corn salad, generously seasoned
(2) three loaves of bread, punched down for a second rise,
shaped and proofed
(3) nine raisin muffins. Not sure why my recipe only makes 9, but it's okay.
(4) fish-- fairly tasty, not my best, but not bad
(5) introduction to this post--jotted on napkin--
Contrary to popular belief . .I am not depressed.
(6) grocery list appended--chocolate chips, zip-locks, decaf beans, rice
(7) added to the "to do" -- "Pay Gary" -- auto mechanic
Forgot the last. The miracle is nothing burned.
Oh, and I changed the format to this blog.
The last, of course, was a tough call, because if you notice, to the right there's no blog roll, no Blogs I Love! It got lost in the shuffle and I'll have to do it by hand, add my resident buddies, many of you. Time consuming, for sure. When you grieve a loss you become painfully aware of how little of this you have, time, and how important it is to use it wisely. So email me if you're in a hurry to get me moving on it.
The new blog looks better though, doesn't it? Eventually I tired of admiring my new look and wrote today's post. Here you go.
Dad, how to I fix this watch? I replaced the battery and it still won't run!
Or Dad, what DO you do with this gadget. It looks like a watch-maker's kit. Is it?
Or Dad, why did you make barrels of wine if you never intended to drink it or even serve it to anyone? (He had a glass of wine perhaps once every couple of months, maybe.)
One of my more fond memories is sitting on the couch and watching a ball-game with him, sipping his beer. (He had a beer maybe once a month, too.)
Or Dad, what do you want on your headstone? How about we go with your name and the date of birth, date of death. Wait. Nobody even agrees on your birthday! Your parents made it up at Ellis Island. A little help here?
Or Dad, where did you put the (too many of these to list).
In general a person's coping skills are less powerful, don't generally work. The things that made you happy, won't make you happy, You're compelled to feel bad. But you get your zip back, just when you think you've lost it, then you lose it again, maybe a few days, even weeks later. That's just the way it is.
Before you blink, you'll have worked it through. And you'll feel like dancing.