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Since Sunday I have noticed that I’ve needed to use some of my coping mechanisms more often than I did last week. This mostly seems to be because, even though I’m not completely lethargic, work is mostly boring which leads to my thoughts running away from me and then I get all sads and lethargic.

Of course, the clichéd coping mechanism is to not be in situations which trigger you. For this reason, I’m currently not in the #silverstripe IRC channel. It’s a bit hard to handle the bit where it’s the boring parts of work that trigger me, but I do try to pick the interesting things to do and leave the not so interesting things to James ;)

One of the most useful, fairly quick ways of coping I’ve found that works for me is to play a game or two of snake. It’s surprisingly relaxing and is great fun. It’s also one of the few games I have yet to tire of.

Informal writing, including this blog, also has a great grounding effect. There’s just something about thinking and then trying to word my thoughts that just seems to help me focus through things.

Another thing I’ve taken to doing is a Collatz sequence for a somewhat large value of n. Barcodes and phone numbers tend to be good starting points and it seems to impress people for some reason. Or they just think I’m crazy. I’m used to that one.

Then there’s things like last weekend, where I’m spending time around people I like and just having fun. The NZAMT quiz last night and giving a talk at the conference on Tuesday were also rather enjoyable events.

Finally, there’s a certain someone that has been rather helpful. As a bonus, she’s rather good looking too.

Caitlin has been a massive help in both providing someone who can listen and provide advice and as someone who can rattle on about other things that distract me well enough.

While not directly responsible for me going and getting diagnosed, she had also been pushing me to go and do something about the symptoms.

So yeah, she’s awesome :)

Future options

One of the options for treatment of depression that I’ll revisit after getting back from my next holiday is to start seeing a psychiatrist. This is in conjunction with medication and, according to wikipedia, usually has a much larger effect on healing than just medicating.

Other things I’ll be looking into is finding more hobbies (I have so few of those I’m surprised I do anything over the weekends) and getting fit again. Perhaps even trying to be more social. Well, that sounds weird. Do it anyway!

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It’s been four days since my last sort of analytical post. Really should figure out how to add a “Start at the beginning” sort of thing to the nav bar. Anyway, I digress. I’ve spent the last two days around a bunch of people I sorta know, so it has been a good time to see how the current effects of my drugs interact with my introversion.

For the first couple of days (Wednesday, Thursday, Friday) I picked up what seemed to be a cycle of:

  • Take drug
  • Bus to work
  • Happy happy fun times
  • Home time
  • Sads
  • Tireds a lot earlier than normal
  • Sleep
  • Repeat

Then I went away Friday evening, which started with a train ride. Now, as we all know, trains are awesome. It’s rather hard to be sad on trains.

The small group of people I spent the majority of my time with over the weekend are a group that I really enjoy being around. Other than a couple of hours Saturday morning where my sads were playing catchup from being disrupted by an awesome train ride, that held true. Including during the half-hour stop in the Pagani outlet store. It probably helped that I wasn’t sharing a cabin with a bunch of loud teenage boys that don’t understand the concept of sleep.

The main thing I’ve noticed over the last few days is just how happy I’ve been. While I do jokingly call my drugs happy pills, I have definitely noticed my spirits being improved. It may be a bit hard to tell if the bounciness it caused today came from being around that group of people or from an improved mood. I guess I’ll need to wait a bit to find out.

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Since I don’t feel like enough time has passed since yesterday’s post for me to given an update that’s more than a couple of lines, and I’m going away to a place with very limited reception tomorrow before I’ll have time to post something, I figured I’d try to give a bit more background on my condition as well as more on what I envision this blog will be.

The blog

Starting with the blog, cause that’s easier. I’m going to be aiming to be posting in the evening every 2-3 days, sometimes more often, sometimes less. My main support person can bug me if it’s been too long.

For staying up to date, posts will be pushed to my Facebook account when I remember. There’s also RSS and Atom feeds for those of you that use feed readers. If you’re still looking for a reader after the demise of Google Reader, I’m using Newsblur.

Comments are moderated and are going to stay that way. When I’m away, like this weekend, that means it may take a day or two for comments to show up.

I’d also welcome turning this from a monologue into a conversation. Ask questions and I’ll try to answer them. Not sure if that’ll be in another post or in a comment. I guess it depends on how much I feel like writing in response.

Some background

I have no idea what people would like to hear about, so I’ll just ramble on about whatever I feel like rambling about, gosh.

The main way my depression makes itself known is through lethargy, which makes doing anything incredibly difficult. While I do have periods of great productivity, they usually only last half a day before I’m back to my general state of meh.

This makes it really hard to do the tedious, repetitive things that my job involves (make a form, validate the data, save the data, display the data, rinse and repeat). This causes some rather unproductive days at work which just feeds back in due to the lack of any sort of achievement.

I usually have maybe one half-day a fortnight of productivity, 3-4 of complete lethargy and then the rest are spent in a sort of “meh, I suppose I can half-arse something” sort of state.

Then there’s the bad days. These days usually start out fine, and I’m all chirpy (well, relatively). Then, with no external stimuli whats so ever, I’m suddenly wallowing in the pits of despair, though with no accompanying albino. These, usually monthly, occurrences end up with me just wanting to curl up into the fetal position and cry. Since I’m usually out when this hits, that’s rather hard to do. It was a more extreme version of one of these episodes that finally lead to me doing something.

In the past, my usual coping mechanism was to go walking with a certain playlist. That hasn’t been working since about the major breakdown I had in 2011. I tend to be fine when in social situations I enjoy, so long as I don’t run out of my rather limited supply of social energy. Though then I’m usually hit with exhaustion as well as lethargy.

That’s all I can currently think of to ramble about. Perhaps the proof-reader will have some more ideas or you can ask questions and stuff.

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