I’m not certain I want to do this. Not certain it is a good idea to do it with regard to business, with regard to those who associate themselves with CODOH, with regard to family. While the issue is many-sided, it is not complicated.
I’ve never been one for depression. That’s what is so surprising about encountering it now, being aware of encountering it, for the first time in my life. I am not talking about sadness. I was brought to the point of tears only yesterday when I was informed that my friend Ron Nelson had died of cancer, but that was a reaction to a specific event. Depression is a more mysterious affair.
When I woke this morning I did not want to get out of bed. Part of it is that the house is cold, but mostly I just didn’t want to get out of bed. That’s not how it used to be, but it is how it oftentimes is lately. I don’t want to get out of bed. Of course this morning I did get up, took care of a few things like making a pot of coffee and scratching the parrot’s back, then came into the office. Once here I was aware of not wanting to do the work. Thirty years of wanting to do it, always understanding that I would have nothing from it but always wanting to do it and now, increasingly, the not-wanting to do it.
The depression that comes and goes and comes around again every couple days, sometimes every couple hours—I’m aware that it is mixed with the unending anxiety about money, the endless anxiety over a daughter who is 24 years old now with no apparent future, and the surprising new anxiety about the coming end to my life. Tomorrow I’ll be 80 years old. A year ago, when I turned 79, I didn’t give it a second thought. Even after the cancer, the chemotherapy, the exhaustion. It didn’t matter. A year ago no depression, no anxiety, no fear, no thinking about the end of things. That stuff has only come around the last three, four months. Maybe it’s been a couple months longer. No way to know now.
My way of dealing with this stuff used to be to write about it. I’d keep a journal. I’m not a book writer. From the beginning—I was 22 years old—even at the beginning I saw that my own character interested me more than any character I might imagine inventing. I think that might be at the crux of the problem now with this depression thing. I do not write about my character, and I do not write about the work that I observe this character doing. I do write about both, but not with care. I have started over with the journal and the blogs half a dozen times. Each time I let it go. Maybe the time has come to stay with it.
The problem is, tomorrow’s another day.