Category Archives: illness

New habit

I don’t know why it’s happening, but for the last month or so, I’ve been doing a lot of all-nighters. Sometimes it’s writing, or reading, but tonight I’ve been looking at knitting patterns, most way beyond my competence, and yarn that could break the bank. To top it all off, a friend has sent me a long short story to proofread, and I couldn’t put it down.

So what do you all do when you don’t go to bed at night? I’m sure plenty of people have all sorts of hidden reasons for not sleeping. I know one person who claims she knows when she’s due for a nightmare, and if she stays up all night, it loses its turn in her dream cycle. Wouldn’t that be nice?

When I stay up all night to write, I actually produce some of my more inspired twists and turns in my work in progress. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work if I force myself to stay up. It only happens if the sleeplessness is organic. And mine is organic tonight, since I slept most of the 36 hours leading up to 1 pm today. I may have overslept myself. I had a light bug, with headache and stomachache and I slept it out of me. Now I’m not tired. But this is the only writing I’m allowed to do until I send Fantastical Trips off to the editor.

So you readers get the nonsense I am producing in the wee hours of the morning. Or at least it will still be the wee hours next week when daylight savings time has been put to rest. And with that, I bid you all a good morning!

Daily prompt: Masks off

We’re less than a week away from Halloween!¬†If you had to design a costume that channeled¬†your true, innermost self, what would that costume look like? Would you dare to wear it?

Like all clinically depressed people, I have a persona that I wear that is sociable and friendly. As my shrink has pointed out more than once, I fake it to make it. When my depression is not bad (which is not to say that I am not depressed), I can actually enjoy and profit from interactions under this facade. When my depression is worse, I am barely able to maintain the mask. When it is at its worst, I don’t tend to go out, since I cannot maintain the mask. I cancel engagements, and don’t show up outside.

So would I dare to wear the worst me outside? No, and why should I? One doesn’t expect a cancer patient to parade around in her hospital johnny with tubes sticking out of her arms. Why should someone suffering from a mental illness be expected to do anything like that? Treat major illnesses the same. Depression, as some comedians would tell you, is not a joke. Nor is any form of mental illness. Nor is any illness that is real and treatable in any way.

I have written about this before. The tendency to blame the victim of mental illness, whether a suicide or not, is inconsistent with who we are as a people. It is cruel and inhumane. It is not treating another as we would be treated ourselves. It is unChristian, and unBuddhist and probably all of the other great religions. People who say suicides are selfish are so out of tune with the facts as seen by the suicide that the lack of charity is stunning.

Sorry to rant and rave on a daily prompt, but I was only following the instructions. Do you really know what’s behind your mask?