depression

Depression Invasion

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Depression invasion!

We had a wonderful day, went to sleep, and I woke up to a completely different husband.

It is only in the past few years that I truly understand that hubby has always been very very depressed. And depression sucks.

I thought it was me.

You see, in the past I used to blame myself. Since normal people do not just wake up in a hateful place for no reason, it had to be me, right?

I mean, I burnt the toast, didn't I?

And I forgot to take the butter out.

I didn't write down that ATM withdrawal and overdrew the account.

And my step-son freaked out and screamed for his mother all night.

So screaming, spitting, throwing, breaking, cursing, and then finally going to bed for a few days was an appropriate response, right?

My mother was bipolar, showing me both mania and deep, suicidal depression. I know not from appropriate responses.

And I would act out too, mind you. I screamed, broke things, cursed, and shook with anger. I often had a Bad Day.

I thought people were entitled to bad days.

About 10 years ago I started to work on myself. I kept journals, started a gratitude practice, and made a concerted effort to tell the truth always.

I dug for the positive, gave out lots of compliments, and started to forgive everyone, including my parents and myself.

I stopped holding grudges. I realized how much of my behavior was learned from my mother.

And I started to live a better life.

Suddenly I had more energy, now that I wasn't spending so much on anger, resentment, and grudges.

Suddenly I had more money, now that I was giving and spending appropriately and not either hording it or throwing is away.

Suddenly I had more opportunities, as my light grew and attracted others.

And suddenly, my marriage was better, as I forgave hubby and myself, stopped holding on to anger, and started telling the truth.

Hubby was still depressed.

Yup.

Not as angry, not as confrontational, but still depressed.

And even after we moved to NYC, with stable income, and he has written and published two books to some critical acclaim, he is still depressed.

Yesterday he was fine.

Truly! We took the ferry over to Governor's Island, explored Fort Jay and Castle William, had a picnic, got caught in a little rain, saw a huge hawk, and ordered sushi for dinner. A great day.

And he woke up this morning depressed.

Bad depressed. Like, "my life sucks and nothing matters and I hate my life" depressed. He is in bed as I type.

I feel like he has been invaded.

Today is a depression invasion!

How long will it last?

Who knows?

He will assure me that it is not my fault. And I know it isn't.

But it still sucks.

Self-Care - Today Is A Better Day

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Self-Care - Today is a better day. I focused on myself and my care, and other things took care of themselves.

If you are reading regularly, you know that this weekend was shitty in terms of hubby's depression. He snapped Friday night and stayed in bed until Sunday.

My old way of handling this involved hovering, worrying, staying in, and hounding him with questions. None of this would work.

I would then resent him for "making me" stay home, hover, and worry.

I would be angry at him for ignoring me and my needs & questions.

This time I decided that he was taking care of himself the only way he knows how. And I need to take care of myself.

So I did.

I did self-reiki. I did Pilates. I read, wrote, and crocheted. I watched old Saturday Night Live episodes on my DVR and laughed. I went to acupuncture. And I made sure to eat enough and stay hydrated.

Yesterday he got up and started roasting off beef bones for stock, prepping chicken wings for dinner tonight, and being active at home.

This morning the stock pots are already on the stove at 6:29am. I am busy at work today, where I have a free hour to do some Pilates. And my blog post for the day is done.

Approaching life from a calm, grounded perspective is what I have learned from my years of Reiki and Pilates. It's just taken 25 years to sink in and become my routine.

How do you handle stress? Do you take it day by day?

Do you have any daily self-care practices that help you? Meditation? Yoga? Pilates? Reiki? Prayer? Walking or running? Even knitting or crochet?

If yes, good for you!

If no, I encourage you to find something that works. If you can't do it yourself, find a teacher.

Self-care makes all the difference.

How Do You Feel?

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How do you feel? Your feelings are one of the things you can have more control over.

In yesterday's post I discussed how I try to give myself as much self-care as possible, especially when hubby is in the midst of a deep depression (like he is right now).

Remember that no matter what is going on at home, I still need to go out there five days a week and make my clients feel better and stronger. I can only do that when I am feeling OK.

Last night we slept in PJs for the first time in 21 years (yes, we are naked cuddle sleepers) and when I woke up he was on the couch. Now I am on the couch and he is... wait for it... in bed.

Today I did my morning self-Reiki, and then I will go for acupuncture, which makes everything better. And I will do some Pilates mat and maybe play with some new stuff. I will also continue to crochet my scarves that will be for sale at the Clara's Boutique at Real Pilates.

I could, at this point, just fall over crying. I could, at this point, be really really pissy and angry to everyone around me, including myself.

But I do know that, while hubby's depression isn't my fault, choosing to feel and behave badly would be my choice and my fault.

I choose to do everything in my power to feel good.

This was in my inbox this morning from Abraham-Hicks:

You see, you're giving others too much power as you even acknowledge how they make you feel. What you've got to decide is how I'm going to feel. We would go to a Virtual Reality and we would practice feeling good. Manifestations come on the heels of what you've conjured in thought.

It is perfect, isn't it? Love the synchronicity.

So, how do you feel?

Pilates with Reiki for Depression

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Working It Out - Pilates with Reiki will help you handle every challenge life throws at you. Here's how it helps me handle my grief and hubby's depression.

Joseph Pilates had a very broad definition of fitness:

a developed body with a sound mind fully capable of naturally, easily, and satisfactorily performing our many and varied daily tasks with spontaneous zest and pleasure

Basically, he believed that we should be ready for anything we might want or need to do in life. Need to push your car when it breaks down? Check. Need to carry your kid home from the car? Check. Play in a weekend football game? Check. Swim in the ocean and walk the beach on holiday? Run a marathon? If you want to, check!

Mr. Pilates had a lot he had to deal with in his life, from childhood asthma to a detention camp for enemy aliens in England during WWI, to Germany between the wars, immigration to the US, and trying to patent his equipment, run his business, and market contrology.

I can only imagine his physical and emotional stress.

You cannot imagine how many people hurt themselves doing simple things like opening windows stuck closed after winter (torn rotator cuff, anyone?), skiing when they generally don't exercise (knee injuries), and picking things up - including children, heavy boxes, heavy grocery bags, heavy weights - (herniated discs).

Instead of dreading activity and the injury or pain that might result, I believe, as did Joseph Pilates, that we should regularly engage in exercises that require mental focus as they work your body in each plane of motion, focus on strength and stability as well as a healthy range of flexibility, and strengthen all the muscles of the body, as well as the mind, with coordinated, functional, mindful movement patterns.

Doing an exercise program like this, and Pilates mat is a great example, will keep your body and mind prepared for both the best and the worst. Pilates with Reiki together (not necessarily at the same time) helps even more.

Reiki is a spiritual healing practice that serves to focus the mind and balance the human bio-field. As a practitioner of traditional Usui Reiki (Mikao Usui founded Reiki) I practice self-Reiki every day, which like meditation, takes about 20 minutes and requires some mindful attention.

Today, for example, was very tough for me. In the past 6 months I have been through a crushed big toe and the deaths of both parents. My husband, who suffers from depression, has been great throughout my grief. Until last night.

Last night we fought over absolutely nothing. And it ended with him not speaking and going to bed. Now, when this happens I cannot talk to him, touch him, or in any way meaningfully interact with him. It makes living together in an alcove studio quite interesting. Do I know how long this episode will last?

No.

So I am sitting here lost in uncertainty (this could last a day or two, but has gone several weeks in the not so distant past) and feeling angry, sad, and shut out. This, when added to my pre-existing grief, depression, and feelings of fatness, makes me want to crawl into a dark hole.

Today I elected to not leave the house. It is rainy and gross, so that's OK. Hubby gets out of bed unasked to walk the dog and make food, so I've been pretty free of responsibility. Basically, no excuse to skip my Pilates with Reiki for the day.

This morning I did my morning Reiki self treatment. And this afternoon I did my Pilates mat. A nice intermediate series that left me breathing hard, shaking, warm, flexible, and well worked out.

And now I feel a little better.

C'mon Life, throw me what you got.

I do Pilates with Reiki. I am ready!