Mindy Newell: Depression Really Sucks
“…Depression… is a storm indeed, but a storm of murk… slowed-down responses, near paralysis, psychic energy throttled back close to zero…the body…feels sapped, drained.” Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness, William Styron
Sorry for the skip last week, everyone, but I wasn’t up to it – I was down. As in my depression said “Hello, again!” last weekend. No, I didn’t lie in bed for 48 hours, I’ve never given in to that, even back in the day before I was properly diagnosed with this goddamn thing. So on Saturday, though I could feel it banging on the door of my psyche’s house, I did get dressed and made the usual weekend runs to the supermarket and to the laundromat…but by Sunday Elvis was in the house, and even though I got up and put on my workout gear, I blew off my free personal training session that my gym offers to all members for their birthday, decided that I didn’t want to expose my grandson to his fucked-up grandma Mindy, and so just sat around in my workout gear, surfing the web and eating waaaaay too many potato chips. And I kept watching the clock tick away the hours thinking that I had to write my column, but I just couldn’t get the energy up and finally I let Editor Mike know I was sick, though I didn’t specify with what in my e-mail to him.
See, the thing about depression is that it drains the battery and warps the mirror. When it hits me I feel old and ugly and fat and powerless and oh! so! damn! alone! and my thoughts are all about the mistakes I’ve made and the lover(s) I’ve lost and the roads not taken and the…well, it gets pretty nasty and self-destructive, folks. And, for me, at least, it’s embarrassing, because…well, you know that old saw about how when animals are sick they hide away from the herd or crawl under the bed? I don’t know if it’s entirely true, but I always think that if it is, it’s because the animals feel shamed. And I get that, I really do, because, even though I know it’s completely illogical, I feel ashamed and embarrassed.
Which is why, I think, I try to be so open about my depression. It’s my way of fighting it. It makes me so! God-damned! angry! that I have had to deal with this shit for 25 years… anyway, it’s another old saw about how shadows disappear in the light, and I just wanted to let you guys know where I was last weekend.
But that was last weekend. It passed, as all things do….
Everybody stand up and cheer that our friend and fellow columnist John Ostrander came through his cabbage with flying colors! Yeah!!! And yes, we medical folk really do pronounce the acronym CABG that way. I do owe you an apology, though, John. I forgot to let you know about the shave job. Just be glad it wasn’t a body wax!
I’ve been binging on Star Trek: Voyager this week. Totally forgot how absolutely marvelous Kate Mulgrew (currently playing “den mother” Galina “Red” Reznikov on Netflix’s Orange Is The New Black) was as Captain Katherine Janeway. The lady had a lot hanging on her performance as the first woman to head a Star Trek series, though technically she wasn’t the first woman we saw command a starship – I believe that honor goes to Tricia O’Neill as Captain Rachel Garret of the U.S.S. Enterprise-C in “Yesterday’s Enterprise,” which aired on Star Trek: The Next Generation in 1990. But it’s clear in her execution that Ms. Mulgrew embraced and cherished the opportunity and the role.
All the actors were superb, but one thing I’ve always questioned is why Voyager creators Rick Berman, Michael Piller, and Jeri Taylor chose not to have Robert Duncan McNeill replay his “fallen Starfleet cadet” Nicholas Locarno in TNG’s 1992 episode “The First Duty,” instead of “bad boy” Tom Paris. It may have been just synchronicity that McNeill read for the part and won it; it may also have been that it would have been very expensive to resurrect the Locarno character, as the writers of “First Duty” would have had to receive royalties every time Locarno appeared on the screen, which would have been every episode of Voyager.
Can’t say I’m happy about the results of the midterm elections last week. I don’t understand why the Democratic candidates ran away from President Obama. Hello, Allison Grimes, did you not learn your lesson when Al Gore distanced himself from Bill Clinton? Jesus, woman, you were a delegate for Obama at the Democratic convention! Who the hell did you think you were fooling? I don’t understand any woman who votes the Republican ticket. No one’s forcing anyone to have an abortion, lady. And what business is it of yours, anyway, if another woman chooses to do so? I don’t understand why someone who is against the minimum wage, denies global warming and climate change and wants to eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency (created by Republican President Richard Nixon, by the way), gets into office. Oh, I know. She can slaughter hogs.
SPOILER ALERT! STOP HERE IF YOU MISSED THE DOCTOR WHO FINALE! “Bowties are cool.” But Osgood is dead. Or is she?
Danny Pink is dead. Worse, he’s a Cyberman. Or is he?
The coordinates for Gallifrey are wrong, a lie told to the Doctor by the Master – uh, the Mistress. Or are they?
Clara and the Doctor have ended their relationship – or did they?
Is that really Santa Claus?
Ho! Ho! Ho!
Hey, at least I’m not depressed anymore.