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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

I will recover eventually.

I have been this - second? third? - major depressive episode for at least one and a half years now, if I count the starting point of it being August 2007 thereabout when I could not get out of bed for two days. Seeing a psychiatrist definitely has kept the worst demons away for most of the time; instead of a constant stabbing pain of sadness, I feel more normal. Just not fully recovered. Yet.

I still get panic attacks. I still fear being out of doors too much, meeting people and crowded places. I still fall sick often. Doing anything occupational takes far too much work and energy than it should. I am too tired to do anything much. I forget things, like taking my withdrawn cash from the ATM slot, or whether I have taken my meds for the day. My sleep and appetite sucks from time to time. I gain almost nil pleasure from anything. In fact, I am grateful enough to keep the pain at bay, never mind happiness or pleasure, just the absence of pain is a feat in itself, every day.

But despite all that, I am slightly more occupied lately, and a bit more ambitious. I have taken on teaching my friend's kids art at their home (both kids have special learning needs). I am trying to get my volunteering at SANA up and running. I force myself to give private tuition lessons to (two) secondary school kids more regularly. I have taken up painting again. I managed to, with medicinal help, visit Sim Lim Square on a Saturday with J without getting anywhere near a panic attack from being in the throngs of people scouring for IT products and the like.

And tonight, I have taken on envisioning again what I want to do when I recover, and how I will go about it. I feel wistful thinking of all these skills, talents and experiences that I cannot put to use fully now because I am in a semi-incapacitated state most of the time. If I teach for half a day I have to rest for two full days, and even fun, recreational and sedentary things are tiring to me.

I have to keep my vision alive, but I have to be patient and recover fully. I still believe things will work out, I still believe I will recover eventually. I feel like a comatose or catatonic patient, not quite alive, but still able to feel or hear, just unable to respond properly. Eventually I will wake up proper from this coma, and through physiotherapy regain the use of my limbs and re-train my motor skills. Eventually, eventually.