Wednesday
Oct012003

« Upswing »

So far, things are looking up. For you astute readers of TAPKAE.com who are in the know, things got pretty bad around here for most of the summer, and desperate in early September. Y'all can read about that on the 2003 page above if this is coming as news to you. The meds seem to be taking some effect now with a couple solid weeks of being on them. But more importantly, I think, is that there are some things that I am doing directly to not let the depression take another foothold.

Last week I went and bought a bike and each day have been riding a couple miles. So far it has all been in the neighborhood, just zigzagging all over the streets and hills that make up my area here in Clairemont. I found a trail a few days ago that I absolutely didn’t know existed, and it was in the canyon directly down the hill from my street! I rode the mile and a half or so that was extremely bikeable, then it turned to adventure as the trail gave way to a washed out river bed that was very wooded and rocky, causing me to have to carry or drag the bike all the way. This went on for about a quarter mile at the end, opening up into the back side of a small townhome development at Balboa and Moraga area. Considering I never knew the trail existed, this was great fun for me. It reminded me of when my childhood and adolescence was spent doing precisely this discovery and adventure in the canyons in my neighborhood. So that was certainly a good thing. I did the ride in the afternoon just before dusk, a nice clear Saturday that gave way to the evening clouds and fog we get here every night. It was just as I remembered it. Instead of having mom back home with dinner ready, it was my Kelli taking a nap for the time I was gone (she was surprised to find it was two hours), then having to make the dinner myself, for us. That isn’t quite how I remember it, but it is great nonetheless to come home to.

Domestic life is also looking better around here. I have two new roommates who are more interested in taking care of the house as their own than any other roommates I have had, but for one (the one who eventually tried to steal from me, go figure). Anyway, we have Gus the Greek who is a chef and baker. He is about 18 years older than me, and works like mad to get whatever he sets his mind to. I don’t think he worries too much about material possessions much. I think he has this old world view that I find refreshing. He and I are making a little garden in the back yard now, with some potatoes, tomatoes, lettuce and herbs (plural, no “herb”–sorry Brandon). We are also going to try to revive my backyard, a place that has been let to die to some extent, which is a shame because I have known it to be beautiful. Gus has been inspiring to listen to, and a great addition to the place.

Sara, the other roommate, and first girl to move in here, has brought something of flair to the place. She has the plants, brighter colors, snappier furniture, and in general some life and enthusiasm for making the place feel nice and vivid. She has only been here a little over a week, but she loves to keep house. She and Gus are a far cry from the lazy bachelors that have been here before, that I am so glad to have gone. The place just seems more alive and able to become more livable and stimulating. I need that. The lazy roommate thing just drove me to depression. With all the time I spend at home, more and more I find that I need to have some order. There are some projects of the painting sort I plan on doing to further this new trend, so that will tie up some free time and keep that ball rolling. Other domestic things have been just trying to keep a neater place and doing the little stuff like putting clothes and materials away, and making my bed and opening blinds full wide.

I set up the drums and have done some casual playing for nothing but fun and as a little investigation to see if it is still viable. I plan on getting the guitar and bass rigs ready to use for my birthday which might have some jamming happening. My drum technique has never been too refined, and not having played for a couple months doesn’t help except to make me just want to cut loose and not even think. So I bashed along with some old Badfinger and Ben Folds Five—stuff that doesn’t require much more than a feel for a song. I will have to tread lightly on this return to music. I might like to play, but not really put anything of a project in front of me.

In school, I have only one class, and that is Oral Communications, with the same instructor as I had in 1987 in 9th grade and in 12th for US history. He is a great teacher, and I wanted to take his class again. Tonight I did my first full speech. It was about depression. I was pretty nervous but didn’t clam too hard and believe I came in pretty well. I did include that I was writing from the perspective of a suicidal person who only recently got past that episode, but my voice was shaking some like it was happening now.

With the exception of some new challenges for my father and I trying to live in the knowledge that I am not made of leather and steel, things have been good. I have made some amends to some people I have wronged, reignited a friendship or two, cut down computer time (mostly off the newsgroups and boards that I spent so much time on) and have been trying to live a little better. Some exercise, some routines like journalling and some counseling have been making things better for the last two weeks or so. My 30th birthday, a day I often thought I wouldn’t see if I had my way, is in less than two weeks, and I am actually looking forward to the chance to hook up with people and celebrate life. It may sound corny, but at the moment, the cloud is gone and I want to enjoy that.

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