I'm a planner. And when I say planner, I don't just mean I like to make plans. I sure do, but that's not the extent of it. I like to make plans, and then I like to white knuckle grip the calendar in anticipation of my plan going awry. I clutch desperately to my plan, even if it's abundantly clear it's not going to work. And to be honest that has always worked for me, because I've only ever had to answer to myself, and things always got done that way. But now, something I'm learning as I progress and grow in friendships and relationships and adulthood, is that the plan isn't set in stone, and clinging to it like it is doesn't help anything. If something doesn't work, it doesn't work, and we should just do ourselves a favor and let it go.
This is easier said than done. Case in point-- I wrote the first paragraph of this blog post at the beginning of last week, and I meant it. I went on to talk about how "Things felt easier this week. Plans felt like they just came together, fell together. Although I did feel myself getting worked up about "the plan" at times, I tried to keep it in check, and not give in to that anxious crutch."
I even went on to describe each day in detail, and talk about how things just fell together on each one of them, despite my not making explicit plans for them. For my grand finale I finished with, "I rolled with the punches this week, and I think it's because I did my best to channel my inner Idina and LET IT GO. To all you planners out there, I challenge you, nay I urge you to unhand the calendar a little bit this week. Not to your detriment-- you should still use it to remember when that dreaded dentist appointment is, but remember that things will still get done even if you don't stare at it and check things off every five seconds. It's as much of an addition as technology or chocolate. Break up with your calendar this week. Or at least...take a 'break.'"
But then, Sunday rolled around. And for some mysterious reason that I couldn't, and still can't figure out, I couldn't get out of bed. I've had depression for a good portion of my life I'd say. I've felt depressed before, I've been in the depths of it, and thought I'd seen and felt it all. But this, this not being able to get out of bed, this not being able to find a reason to get up despite the dozens of things I have to look forward to- in the immediate and long term future- this was new to me. And until about the middle of the afternoon, I couldn't cope with it. But then, I accepted some help. I allowed my boyfriend to come over, and we watched Bob's Burgers and ate Panera and randomly went to Old Navy so I could get out for a bit. It wasn't my original plan for the day, and there were parts of it that were ugly, but at the end, it was beautiful.
I decided early last week that I was going to start really writing on this blog. I'm not going to shy away from things anymore, I told myself. I'm going to tell the truth. The hard, ugly, blurry truth. So when it came time to finalize this blog post, I couldn't rationalize using the original draft, because it felt hypocritical to leave out the ugly bits just to prove my point. So I wanted to tell you the truth in this blog post. And the truth is, I have a lot to learn, even about things I thought I knew everything about. There are some things I'd rather not know more about, like the unexplored depths of my own depression. But even though it might not be my plan to learn more about it, even though I'd rather not go there, I have to realize that things don't always go according to plan. I may very well see more depths, even amidst these many peaks. I'm working on coming to terms with that today, last week, and every day in the future.
You can watch my weekly vlog about this week right here: