but I did everything right…

I woke up for the third time after a night of fractured and difficult sleep and decided it was time to get up. Five minutes past six but my sleep had been miserable since two in the morning, partly because of the internal kerfuffle created by daylight savings time and partly because I forgot to wear my blue-filter glasses while playing on my phone last night.

I bought them a couple of weeks ago online and wear them when I’m interacting with my electronics. Stories and studies abound over the consequences of exposing oneself to too much blue light from screens; the sleep interference that blue-light exposure causes can be problematic, especially when you already struggle in that area. I bought the glasses with a “what the hell” kind of attitude; to be honest, I wasn’t expecting much but surprisingly, my sleep has improved. Except for yesterday. This is my own fault; I downloaded a new game onto my phone and played it for a couple of hours before bed while not wearing my glasses, sending my nighttime blue-light exposure soaring. I did not appreciate the return of fractured sleep, so I’ll make sure not to make that mistake again.

Wearing the glasses is the right thing to do. So was getting up. Lying in bed and letting my brain run away with itself never leads to anything good.

I made coffee and drank one cup. Too much unsettles my stomach and may cause sleep problems as well, so I restrict it which is a damn shame. I love my morning coffees but decided again to do the right thing.

I stayed away from politics this morning; it’s best if I avoid it when my mood is edging towards difficult. The ugliness inherent in political discourse makes things harder for me when I’m triggered. I did check out my facebook page and scheduled some posts for today, mostly because I didn’t want to. It wasn’t a reasoned rejection, the feeling that I didn’t want to, but one of those “I hate everything and want to do nothing” moments that depression brings. I didn’t want to cave to those feelings, so I girded my loins and got ‘er done. Big props for me for doing it right; unfortunately, while I can cognitively congratulate myself, I’m not feeling it in my bones.

I ate breakfast, which has been challenging of late. A lot of people skip breakfast but that’s not a possibility for me. Partly because my recovery from my eating disorder depends on my eating meals and learning not to avoid food, and partly because my morning meds have a minimum caloric requirement. If I don’t take them with at least three hundred and fifty calories, they don’t work.

Following breakfast, I meditated, because everyone says it’s helpful. Sometimes that’s even true, but it didn’t go well today – I left it too late and the house was full of loud, morning people doing loud morning things. I sat there and thought of nothing and breathed deeply for fifteen minutes while my brain ran around my skull like a demented squirrel. Props for myself that I still don’t feel for doing it against my inclination.

I find it frustrating that I can do everything right and still feel like shit. It’s a frustration that all the “must do” boxes can get ticked off and depression still sits there like an immovable black monster who’s determined to suck away not only joy and peace, but reasons to live. I hate mornings and moments like that, when my depression is ascendant and absolutely nothing feels pointy or worthwhile. When everything seems too hard, and too awful, and too miserable to bother with.

How is it that I can do everything right and still not feel better?

How is that fair? I can hear echoes of myself in that question; I’ve voiced it enough times over the years for that to be reasonable. I can hear the answer too – no one promised life would be fair. To hold onto the belief that it is or should be is self-defeating. And yet – I want it to be.

I want it to be the case that when I do all the things I’m supposed to do, when I live according to the rules, my brain will feel better. When I tick all the boxes, I want to not feel like it’s pointless, and fruitless, and in the realm of “why bother”. I want it not to be the case that nothing makes it better. I want the pills to be magic and the behaviours to be corrective. I want to feel fine and the fact that I don’t enrages.

Life’s not fair, and that seems to me to be the most unfair thing of all.

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