Thursday, August 21, 2014

Walking On Water: Not As Easy As One Might Think

Life is good. I live on the Costa del Sol, right on the beach, with unobstructed views of the Mediterranean Sea.

I have an amazing husband, San Geraldo. After 33 years together but only 3 years legally married (as permitted by the State of Iowa), I still find it challenging to call San Geraldo "husband." In English, that is. In Spanish, the word "marido" rolls off my tongue and, here at least, never receives even a raised eyebrow.

THE INSTRUCTOR (RIGHT) SEEMS TO HAVE PERFECTED WALKING ON WATER.
THE GUY IN BLUE IS GETTING THE HANG OF IT.

San Geraldo sometimes is semi-high maintenance but, even then, almost always entertaining. He's fascinating, loving, intelligent, funny, curious, innocent, worldly, kind, empathetic, and generous. Not to mention good-looking. He gave me an incredible extended family that changed my life. He loves my mother and brother and would do anything for them. And they both love him — as did my father.

THAT'S QUITE A TAN LINE.

We've had amazing opportunities and adventures in our lives — before we met and in our years together. We've lived in exciting and beautiful places in the United States and, for these past 3+ years, in Spain. We have some truly exceptional friends.

NOT GIVING UP.

Some people who know me know full well that I'm flawed. Some think, I imagine, that I'm more flawed than even I would like to believe. Some who know me think my life has always been blessed and, therefore, they don't understand how I could ever be unhappy — about anything. Others know me, my flaws, my blessed life, and they understand. I've always wanted to be perfect and I've always been disappointed with reality.

ALMOST STANDING.

I've talked about my Clinical Depression (Major Depressive Disorder), in the past. I've lived with it all my life, but only learned what it was when I was 32 and began finally to be treated for it. The only thing that works for me is antidepressant medication. After taking meds the first time for about three weeks, I woke up one morning and didn't recognize myself. I didn't dread the day. I didn't hate what I saw in the mirror. I didn't go to bed that night hoping I wouldn't wake up the next day.

If you're interested in reading more about Clinical Depression, click here for the Mayo Clinic's helpful info.

HE AND THE BOARD DID FINALLY RESURFACE.
(TOO BAD THAT'S HIS PADDLE AND NOT A SNORKEL.)

It took me years to accept that the "Medicated Me" was the real me and not simply a doped up happy idiot. Depression is a constant in my life. Medication works for a while. Then it doesn't. Dosage is perfect. Then it isn't.

After more than 3 months of saying to myself, "Oh, these mood swings are just temporary," I finally realized (accepted) that, "No, they're not." So, the medication is back up a bit. I'm looking forward to feeling like myself again (that other person it took me years to get to know as myself).

NEARLY LOST HIS SHORTS THAT TIME, BUT STILL BACK FOR MORE.

I suppose I just wanted to say that, as you probably well know, life is rarely as easy as it might appear.

I ADMIRE HIM.  HE NEVER STOPPED TRYING.
BUT HE'S THINKING PERHAPS HE SHOULD HAVE JUST RENTED A CAR.

And it sure helps if you have a chance to laugh whenever you manage to come sputtering back up for air.

18 comments:

  1. Nice to hear You have had a great husband. Nowadays is not so easy to find a suitable partner.

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  2. I'm so glad your life has given you so much pleasure, and I'm sorry to hear about the depression. People are at last realizing that it isn't something you can snap out of anytime you want. Years ago I found this poem and it changed the way I looked at people. You're probably familiar with it, but it's always been one of my favorites. It made me realize that what's in front of me is so much more valuable than what I imagine.

    Richard Cory

    **************

    Whenever Richard Cory went downtown,
    We people on the pavement looked at him:
    He was a gentleman from sole to crown,
    Clean-favored, and imperially slim.

    And he was always quietly arrayed,
    And he was always human when he talked;
    But still he fluttered pulses when he said,
    "Good-morning," and he glittered when he walked.

    And he was rich – yes, richer than a king –
    And admirably schooled in every grace:
    In fine, we thought that he was everything
    To make us wish that we were in his place.

    So on we worked, and waited for the light,
    And went without the meat, and cursed the bread;
    And Richard Cory, one calm summer night,
    Went home and put a bullet through his head.

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    1. Stephen:
      We so often think along similar lines! (Does that make me a "great mind," too, I wonder.) Check out my blog post from May of last year: http://mitchellismoving.blogspot.com.es/2014/08/los-boliches-beachability.html

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  3. Thanks for this, Mitchell. Very courageous of you to share this. I am very familiar with depression as my mother had it all my life and most of hers. Big difference here is that she did not take the medication prescribed to help her. This made it very difficult for the whole family, not to mention the hell she chose to put herself through by not taking or accepting help.

    You are one strong individual! I know you may not appreciate this but the fact that you have acknowledged your depression and accept the help available so that you can live a very normal and rewarding life, puts you in control and able 'to walk on water'!!

    This paddle-boarding stuff is the rage here at our beach this year. Everyone is trying it and some get stranded in the tide change and need help!

    Yes, thank the universe for those 'good husbands' out there!! I got me one!

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    1. Jim:
      Thanks, as always, Jim. I used to like roller coasters, but it gets tiring sometimes! As for paddle-boarding, San Geraldo is thinking of giving it a try. I can't wait to share the pictures!

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  4. My son has depression and takes medication but I'm not sure it is the right one for him and I'm not impressed with his doctor....But he is 32 years old and gets to make those decisions himself.....I appreciate your honesty, and I know how depression can be terrible, but I think the people who read your blog find you a very exceptional and excellent person! I liked all the good things you had to say about Jerry and I imagine he would say a lot of great things about you, too....

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    Replies
    1. Kristi:
      Thanks so much, as always, for the kind words. Right now, I don't know how much I'd agree with your appraisal of my fine qualities! But maybe I'll feel differently tomorrow. Wishing your son (and you) the best. If I can ever be of any help, sharing my experiences with treatment and meds, just let me know and we can write offline.

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  5. To hear of how happy you are, makes me happy too! Love these photos, it looks fun and it must be a great feeling providing you can master the technique! Do you think flashing a white bum is obligatory to participate? They'd definitely let me take part if that was the case!

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    1. Hayley:
      Oh, those white English bums! I've been so tempted to do a blog post of the whitest people I've seen this summer!

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  6. Oh, Mitchell. Everything Jim said about you is so true. It takes an impressive person to accept and admit that medication makes you feel whole.
    I was thinking the other day, that I don't think that I know one adult over about age 25 who doesn't have some honestly big struggle in his or her life... that most other people don't even know about. I've tried to accept that this is the reality of life. It's always easy to look at others and feel like, "Geeeeeee, why isn't my life easy and perfect like hers!", but, then you find out that her life or his life has its struggles, too. We can't judge ourselves.

    Even though I don't know you in person, I enjoy sharing the stories of your life with the wonderful guy you love, in the interesting place you live (and, of course, the tales and tails of Moose and Dudo!).

    p.s. That little video of the water was just absolutely wonderful to watch. Thanks for that :)

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    1. Judy:
      You are always way too kind! Thanks so much for your generosity of spirit and time. I hope you appreciate how much your visits mean to me!

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  7. Nice work. It helps those of us who have never had anyone close to us suffering from depression to understand.

    The water is quite turbulent for a paddle board learner. Good on him for giving it a shot.

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    1. Andrew:
      Clinical depression is not an easy thing to understand if you haven't experienced it or lived close to it. You just want to help make things better or say, "snap out of it." I'm lucky enough to know to get help when I need it. Next week will be better!

      As for paddle-boarding, sometimes I want to try it...

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  8. Thanks, Mitchell, for the thoughtful comments about your depression. I can identify with what you describe, especially about looking in the mirror, and about hoping to not wake up. Medication is an important part of my life now, as are my friends. So happy you have a "saint" like Jerry to accompany you on your journey. Hugs to you both.

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    1. Jo:
      So glad you've got a support network (and meds), too. It makes such a huge difference!

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  9. Walking on water is no big deal...it's making my pet snake talk and multiplying the bread I'm having a little trouble with.
    Saludos,
    raulito

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    Replies
    1. Raulito:
      "Walking in sunshine" is the bigger challenge for me! As for you, just train the pet snake to multiply the bread. Who needs a talking snake?

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