Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Not Schizophrenic

Dr. Channing was very close to prescribing me a mild anti-depressant. I put up a fight because I do not want to take any kind of drug. I don't even take aspirin.  I've read the possible side effects of aspirin and it's not pretty:

Heartburn, nausea, black or bloody stools, confusion, diarrhea, dizziness, drowsiness, hearing loss, ringing in the ears, severe or persistent stomach pain, unusual bruising, bleeding stomach.

No thanks.

The whole thing started when she saw that I was not my usual self today. I was feeling blue and wasn't in the mood to talk (which is unusual for me). I get like this sometimes but it doesn't last long. Usually a bowl of mint chocolate chip ice cream is all I need.

However, she was more concerned about my passionate resistance to the medication than to the "depression" itself. Can't say that I blame her. It was like a whole other personality took over. I hope I'm not schizophrenic.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Crazy Is as Crazy Does

Now that I'm going to therapy twice a week, I'm wondering if this is such a good idea. Sometimes I feel like a speck under a microscope. I never know what is going through Dr. Channing's mind. I want her to like me. I want her approval. But is that the "correct" attitude to have in therapy? Trying to please my therapist?

This is something I have to figure out on my own. I need to get over my fears and just let go. Like the time I was ten and went roller skating. I held on to the railing for dear life. My friends were skating and having a great time while I was chained to the wall. I was afraid of falling down and everyone laughing at me. That is still my fear today.

I admit, I have issues. But I am NOT crazy! I've heard that people who say they aren't crazy, are actually crazy. And people who say they ARE crazy, are actually not crazy. So maybe I am crazy. Or not.

Off to get a caramel macchiato. I need to decompress.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Cello Project

Since I have a break from therapy this week, I thought I'd use the time to dust off my cello and play a bit of Bach. I used to play all the time but when I realized I would never be a Jacqueline DuPre, I began to lose interest.  In our early sessions, Dr. Channing asked me about it and encouraged me to take it up again. I found out that she plays the viola. All we need now are a couple of violins and we'll have a string quartet.

Wouldn't matter anyway. I never play in front of people. I'm too embarrassed. Is it because I'm a perfectionist? Fear criticism? Can't measure up (no pun intended)? All of the above? I'll let Dr. Channing decide.

So I dug Isabel out of my closet (Yes, I named my cello "Isabel." So sue me), and we joined forces on the Saraband of Bach's D minor suite. After a few rusty squeaks and squawks, I got into the groove and did Bach proud. I felt guilty leaving Isabel untended for so long. She must hate me for it. I know I would. But no more sadness. Today is a Resurrection. Isabel has risen from the grave and dragged me along with her.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Paradigm Shift

Dr. Channing is going to a conference. That means my therapy session has been cancelled for Thursday. But what really has me concerned is that she wants to see me twice a week.

TWICE A WEEK!? That can't be a good sign:

ME: But, Dr. Channing, I don't understand. Am I getting worse?

CHANNING: Of course not, Madison. In fact, just the opposite. I believe that you're nearing a breakthrough in your therapy.

ME: A breakthrough? Really?

CHANNING: With two sessions per week we should be able to uncover the cause of your neuroses at this critical juncture.

ME: I thought we already uncovered it. Remember the dream I had about Mama putting me on the toilet at two months old? My anal-retentive whatcha call it?

CHANNING: Yes, the dream was revelatory, but that was just the tip of the iceberg. As we've discussed previously, you have been showing signs of a castration complex, narcissism and regression.

ME: Regression? I haven't sucked my thumb since I was 13.

So Dr. Channing scheduled me for Tuesdays and Thursdays. I should be glad that a breakthrough is on the horizon, but I'm not. I'm terrified.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Extreme Makeover

On Saturday Rachel and I got a free makeover at Macy's. It's totally not our thing, but with every makeover, you get a coupon for Taco Bell. So why not?

I think the makeup artists used every weapon in their arsenal. We looked like a couple of Cirque du Soleil rejects. To preserve the memory, Rachel took a picture of us with her cell phone. I think I'll photoshop it for next year's Christmas cards.

My favorite part of the process was picking the eye shadow. I usually use grey or taupe, but I stepped outside the box and went with purple. This was a big step for me because purple symbolizes the opposite of everything I stand for.

Let me explain. You see, I've developed a theory about color and personality. I have absolutely no empirical evidence to back me up, but it's just something I know is true. According to my theory, each color has a positive and negative vibe. For example, blue represents joy (positive) and violence (negative). Positive because blue skies make you happy; negative because the phrase "black and blue" is violent and having the "blues" is to be sad. 

Purple represents loyalty (positive -- king's wear purple robes and demand loyalty from their subjects) and aggression (negative -- purple is a popular color among athletic teams and athletes are aggressive). While I am somewhat loyal, I am not aggressive. In fact, I go out of my way to be nice to people. Everyone has to like me. That is the rule of my universe.

I haven't told Dr. Channing about my color theory. As a woman of science, she wouldn't be impressed. Besides, I wouldn't want her be self-conscious about the colors she wears to our sessions.

Friday, March 4, 2011

A Depressing Friday Night

After work I came home and morphed into a vegetable. No energy. No passion. No joy. All I want to do is eat ice cream and watch "The Bachelor." Am I a romantic at heart. Maybe so.

Grant and Meredith invited me to their house to play "The Simpsons" Monopoly. I declined, despite Meredith's promise that I could be Lisa. I wonder if they feel sorry for me and don't want me to be alone.

And why is everything always about me? I need to get over myself and start thinking about other people for a change.

Too tired to think right now. Going to bed early and sleep in late. I'm done.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me

I wasn't going to say anything, but it's my birthday. I'm not sure how I feel about turning 29. Is my biological clock running out? Should I be married by now? At my age, my mother had two children ages ten and seven. She was president of the PTA, worked part-time at the public library, and was a hospital volunteer.

Dr. Channing would not like it that I'm comparing myself to my mother. In fact, anytime the word "mother" comes up, her scribbling becomes more intense. One of these days I'd like to sneak into her office and read those notes. But alas, that would never happen because I just don't have the ability to do anything that adventurous.

Anyway, I went to Mama's house for my "birthday party." Grant and Meredith were there, sitting at the table, smiling and drinking lemonade. Placebo jumped up to greet me with a sloppy wet kiss. Mama had baked a bunny rabbit cake (she likes to use her Easter baking pan every chance she gets) and brought it to the table with great fan fare. All 29 candles were burning. I felt like running from the house screaming. I hate birthdays. Almost as much as weddings. I don't know why. Ask my therapist. 

Somehow I managed to blow out all the candles in one breath. Then it was time to open the gifts. I hate this part the most. I assume that everyone's happiness is hinged on my reaction to their gift and if I don't respond the right way, feelings get hurt and everyone is miserable.

But not this time. Grant and Meredith gave me a goody bag with various and sundry sweet treats, including chocolate covered cherries and a gift card for Macy's (Thank you!) Mama 's gift was a lovely pair of aquamarine earrings (my birthstone) and a cute short trench coat. I'm always shocked that Mama knows my style.

Afterwards we sang karaoke and watched "The Shawshank Redemption." 

Not such a bad day after all.