I start to get the feeling that something is really wrong. Like all the drugs put together—the lithium, the Prozac, the desipramine, and Desyrel that I take to sleep at night—can no longer combat whatever it is that was wrong with me int he first place.
[…] I start to think there really is no cure for depression, that happiness is an ongoing batter, and I wonder if it isn’t one I’ll have to fight for as long as I live. I wonder if it’s worth it.
—Elizabeth Wurtzel, Prozac Nation: Young and Depressed in America
When I first took a class with writer Jose Skinner, it was 2004 and I had not yet been diagnosed with the terrible D-word. A few months after the first day of class, however, I found myself in the lobby of the student health center checking out a list of things that I had been experiencing in my life. I showed it to the provider and she then gave me a second test. I came out with mild depression and I was sent to the counseling center.
My first session with Veronica went well. I was nervous and Jyg had convinced me to go, something I wouldn’t be able to do later on in our relationship and lack of one when she needed help. My first concern was voiced when we started the session: “I don’t want pills. No pills.”
Medication always seemed like a waste and Skinner and I had one thing in common, we hated them. He shuffled around one class period and said, “Feel like yourself again. Isn’t depressed how I’m supposed to feel?”
And he was right. I don’t ever remember a time when I didn’t feel out of place or sad. I remember growing up very “Catholic” about my life. I don’t think I was meant to be happy in the sense that most people are happy. Sure, I get my few moments of happiness and I live them each and every day, but inevitably they come to an end and I cry or mope or accept it. Mostly the former two. I just don’t trust the pills that allow me backing to my waiting life or make me feel like myself again. It just doesn’t seem natural to me.