First, some quick updates:
I’m still alive (always a good start);
I still work at the Forge;
I still have a day job;
I’m still on the radio once a month;
Ben and I are still happily together;
… and I am still neurodiverse, which is a big part of why nobody’s heard from ol’ Marjorie in awhile.
The depression hit at some point over the summer. I don’t think any particular thing set it off, other than unfortunate brain chemistry, but regardless, it led to an extended, oppressive fog in which I could really only focus on basics: Show up for work on time(ish), keep up with chores just enough to prevent my apartment from officially qualifying as squalor, etc. Compounding the depression, though, were some unexpected financial setbacks, a minor medical crisis, and assorted car troubles (including two more highly unnecessary break-ins), all of which contributed to the general feelings of malaise and despondency.
There’s an old X-Men comic in which everyone on the team has to choose between continuing the mission (stealing a big, magic crystal, if I remember correctly) or achieving their heart’s desire. However, when faced with this decision, the X-Man Dazzler is offered three different desires from which to pick: She could become a world-famous rock star, a high-powered attorney, or a bag lady. Here’s how it played out:
As a kid, this had a profound effect on me: Whenever I was struggling with something, or feeling overwhelmed, I’d be like, “Well, do you want to be a rock star or a bag lady?” And I’d push through. But for the past several months, as debts piled up and waking life got more difficult to navigate, “bag lady” started seeming more and more like a viable career option.
And old friend of mine used to say that it was hard to be a writer when the act of writing triggered her depression. I totally get that, but for me, the opposite is true: Writing puts me in a good mood, and I get my best writing done when things are going well — in that state, the act of writing enhances the happiness. It’s when my depression is in full effect that I can’t write, especially when I’ve used up all my spoons on Sisyphean efforts like getting out of bed or remembering to eat. And that makes me feel like a failure, which in turn makes me want to move into a cardboard box under an overpass with the other homeless mutants.
The blog languished during this period, and while I made occasional notes for potential posts, I spent more time at the Forge growling at customers instead of jotting down the hilarious things they said. I kept meaning to post… I don’t know, anything, even just a brief “not dead, just sad,” but even that seemed like an onus. And besides, it wasn’t like anyone actually cared what I wrote anyway, right?
And then, one fine day, Tank texted me to let me know that a woman name Bridgett had messaged the store, because I hadn’t posted anything for awhile, and she wanted to make sure I was okay. I mentioned this Nuke a few days later, and he was like, “Yeah, we’ve been getting phone calls from people, too. Apparently, you have fans.”
I strongly maintain that it’s okay not to realize one’s blog has a cult following, but that said… guys, I sincerely apologize for making anyone worry. The depression is still lingering around, but I can finally see the light at the end of the rabbit hole, and as such, I am going to do my best to get back to posting regularly and keeping you all entertained with the weird shit that never seems to happen to anyone but me.
And hey, Bridgett? Thank you for checking in. Even if it took awhile to set the bag lady costume aside, I appreciate being made aware that I was wearing it in the first place. This time around, I’m going to be a rock star, and I’m dedicating my first album to you.
ETA: I forgot to mention in the updates that I started wearing glasses again. That’s neither here nor there and has nothing to do with depression or blogging, but still, I think they suit me.