Friday, July 07, 2006

Therapy is a Crock

Sunday, for me, was rough. In my typical, pessimistic form, I somehow convinced myself that I was falling apart. My health issues got the better of me, and I spent the majority of Sunday tucked in bed feeling sorry for myself.

With Billy away for the weekend on a boat with his cousins, I was the only one in attendance at my pity party. But I was the best guest EVER. I watched Fever Pitch for the second time and cried my way through parts that didn't even require tears. I cried when I realized there was nothing else on all of our 600 channels that I wanted to watch. I drank water and smoked too many cigarettes, getting up only a few times to either visit the ladies' room or change my laundry from the washer to the dryer.

A number of events led me to where I was on Sunday - Where I was being in our bed, in our un-airconditioned bedroom, with the window fan pointed directly at me, alternately staring at our TV and flicking my cigarette ash into an over-filled ashtray - but they were all minute. My ovaries, for one. The fact that it was hot. A long wait earlier that morning to get my nails done. A zit blossoming on my face that was no-doubt stress induced. The fact that Billy would come home from his three day boat trip to me, with my weird ovaries and a huge pimple. The dress shirts of Billy's that I washed and dried, but accidentally left haphazardly draped over a chair downstairs and forgot to hang up, leaving me the options of either drying them again, or ironing them. A small stomach bug I'd apparently picked up the night before. And, of course, the Alpha and Omega of my problems these days: My ovaries.

Mind you, I didn't yet know that I'd need surgery. I just felt like something was wrong. And I was scared. And earlier that morning, I had just suffered through another woman (the client my nail lady had before me) telling me that it was no big deal. And I'd been light-hearted about it for long enough. I needed my breakdown.

So I did what I always do when things get to be a little too much. I shut myself away from the world for a couple of hours, and I feel sorry for myself. Why me and I can't handle this being just a few of my favorite strains of commentary that run through my head. Sure, it's melodramatic, and unnecessary, but it's what I do.

By the early evening, I continued to follow my pattern of self-repair, and I called my mom. And she let me cry to her, let me complain and whine and be truly, utterly pathetic. She invited me over for dinner. And when their menu for the evening (hamburgers) didn't sound appetizing, she agreed to make me spaghetti and sauce. Just for me. So I drove the four minutes it takes to get me from my house to hers, in my I'm-Feeling-Like-A-Bum clothes, and collapsed on her couch.

I ate my pasta. I chatted with my family. And then Chase and I decided that a situation like this only calls for one thing: Dairy Queen.

So we hit the road, in his beat up Altima. The windows were down and he played me the CDs he'd just made. The CDs were mixes of some of his favorite songs. Older ones that I'd introduced him to (Like my favorite band, 311) and newer ones that I can't help but love (Panic! At the Disco). I sang along while the wind blew my hair all over my head, speeding down the rural roads that take us to ice cream.

My mood started to lift in earnest. Although not entirely absent, I noticed the decrease in my sadness, my self-pity. At least I wasn't crying.

After Dairy Queen, we went to rent movies. Something funny, something that would lift me out of my doldrums whether I liked it or not. But there was nothing. Except...

Except, there they were: The entire series of Sex and the City. Our digital cable company provides roughly six episodes of that show every month, but whenever I see the new episodes showing on the list, I gorge on them that moment, forgetting that I'll be without anything new for another thirty days. Naturally, I'd already watched every episode playing On Demand for the month of June (Okay. TWICE.), so I stared at the boxes of the episodes I hadn't seen yet with lust in my eyes. Nevermind that I've already seen the entire series, start to finish, at least twice over the course of my life. I needed it. So I picked up the final season and walked to the register.

"How many nights?" The teenaged counter girl asked me, terribly bored with her job, obviously eager to get out.

"Just one."

So what it was eight episodes? So what it was already 10:00 at night? I needed this.

Chase and I drove back to my parents' house, but I made my exit almost as soon as we pulled into the driveway. With my family having made significant chips in my horrible mood, it was up to me and Carrie Bradshaw to get rid of the rest.

I know how stereotypical it is of me to love Sex and the City. I know it's cliché. But I can't help it. I love it. It hits me somewhere that's very true. I get lost entirely in each episode, seeing myself in one, if not all, of the characters portrayed there. I forget all about me for the half hour or so that those girls traipse around New York, dressed in their awesome shoes. I escape me for a bit. And that's exactly what I needed.

That night, that's what I did. I watched as many episodes as I could, stopping the DVD only when I knew my eyes would refuse to stay open much longer. The next morning, I finished the series.

And though my eyes were a little puffy from the crying, I felt better. So much better. My zit was going down. My ovaries weren't hurting so much. The world, which had seemed so off-kilter only one day ago, and shifted back into place.

I don't need a psychiatrist to treat my fleeting depression. I need alone time. My parents. My brother and his music. A trip to Dairy Queen. Some chick programming. A good cry. Because after all of that, I felt better than normal.

I felt like me again.


Anonymous said...

AW, Schucks "Lawrie" we all have had our days like that and although we know that other people have much worse problems ours are still real for us.......when I am feeling like that I can't help but think about the parents who have lost their sons or daughters to the tragedy of war or younger children who have a terminal illness then I realize my problems are not soooo bad compared to that.... chin up & have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!

anno said...

A twist cone and a video binge can go a long way toward making things seem better. It even sounds kind of virtuous. I'd probably precede my "therapy" with some warm, thin, and crispy chips with spicy salsa. And probably a very cold gin & tonic, too. Glad you're feeling better!

Kat said...

A good old fashion cry for me -- releases all that crap that builds. I always feel better after an earthshattering sobfest.

I LOOOOOVE Sex and the City. I've seen every single episode at least 4-5 times. Personally, I think Mr. Big is sexy as hell.

I'm glad your feeling better. Time to empty my overflowing ashtry, I smoke way to many cigs reading blogs.

Casey said...

I actually bought the box set a few months ago! I just worked my way through the entire season for a second time. I love this show.

When I'm feeling like that, I do a lot of crying and eating. Preferably something cheesy and salty, followed by chocolate, and I wear my comfy sweats in my comfy bed. I lock the doors, close the blinds, and find something familiar to entertain me - old episodes of Roseanne, a Sue Grafton novel, the Golden Girls. Then I sleep for about ten hours.

Glad you're feeling better.

Anonymous said...


God's gift to women (with really low standards) said...

I don't know much about therapy, but I do enjoy ellipses, exclamation marks and people who totally miss the point.

Casey said...

Steve rocks.

That's all.

God's gift to women (with really low standards) said...

I do what I can.

Serra said...

To anonymous #2:

You don't like the material here, just find something else to read. It's Laurie's blog; she can use it as HER needs dictate.

On a personal note, anyone who leaves slam comments without signing them blows dogs for quarters. Take your fifty cents and fuck off.

Laurie, edit or delete my comment if you wish of course.