Sunday, February 11, 2018

Life In Balance

I was listening to some guy on the radio talk about depression, and how our society promotes things that add to depression and anxiety rather that working against it.   I'm thinking about reading his book even though I'm not prone to depression myself.  I probably haven't mentioned it, but our older child was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder and anxiety.   As his mother, this has been a painful thing to realize.   I assure you, there is no aspect of self-blame that I have not indulged in.  I think it is a hugely fucked up part of our society is that "It's always the mother's fault."  I think Freud probably started this, but even though people are over Freud, they aren't over the blaming mothers thing.  

 The radio expert was not against drugs, but there are many things that we could be doing, not individually, but all together, that would make this less of an epidemic, besides just throw drugs (that don't always work that well) at people.   This is the book:

One crucial part of his recommendations was just doing things with friends.   Not social media friends, but actual face to face friends and really doing things.    

He told one story about a man in Cambodia who lost a leg.  His work in the fields became intolerably painful and he stayed in his house and spoke to no one anymore.  He was depressed.  The other people in his town got together, talked to him, listened to his problems and then they bought him a buffalo.  This was his anti depressant.  One- he had people that cared to listen to him- his friends.  And two- now he had a job which didn't involve painfully standing on his prosthetic leg- he could milk his buffalo and became a dairy man instead.   

This week my life has revolved around friends.  One of our close friends who lives about an hour from us has a repeated bout of mysterious illness that came on suddenly and prevents her from working or driving for an unknown amount of time.  She has to go to physical therapy twice a week.  Mystique and I went to see her and take her to the doctor, we went out to lunch and then Mystique bought her groceries while we sat in the car and chatted.  Our friend was worn out from the PT.

This was the same friend who let Master live with her for several days a week when he was working in her town, for a period of almost two years.   She is a VERY good friend that we haven't seen enough of since she first had a bout of this illness.  The doctors can't find a cause.  She recovered, mostly, but now it is back two years later.

Saturday was Pizza Day.   We had planned this, with Travis, Wolfmoon and MissV, last month, but Master ended up working every Saturday in February and couldn't go.  He said I should just take the kids and go without him.  I felt bad about this, but there was nothing I could do about it. 
We drove down to Milwaukee (about 2.5 hours away) and spent all day making pizzas of various kinds and tasting them.  This was enormous amounts of fun.  Both the kids made delicious pizzas, and in addition to the regular kind there was also low carb pizza and yogurt crust pizza.  I would be a bad food judge because I gave them all first prize! They were all delicious.  MissV got the real judging job and she gave my older son the trophy, with the pizza that won her heart.  He did a thin crust, pepperoni, sausage, onion and several cheeses.   

I made a mushroom and black olive pizza to take home to Master. 
Travis made a hatch chile pizza with a wonderful thick crust, and also a quick pizza that was just flour and Greek yogurt, zero rising time, for the crust.  Wolfmoon made a low carb "meatza" which had ground hamburger for the crust.  This was also delicious and I'll probably try it at home for my diet.   My younger kid (he's 12) made a stuffed crust pepperoni which was also great.  

We have two of the important depression-fighting strategies right here:  meaningful work and good friends.   I'd have to read the book to remember what all of them were.


  1. That's so tough, the major depressive disorder and anxiety. Agree with your thoughts on always blaming the mother and if we weren't conditioned to place blame, that would help too. Connection is so powerful.
    Pizza making sounds like so much fun. Hugs.

  2. Sounds like you've got a good head on your shoulders. Meaningful work and fellow travelers are the key to any sort of contentment.

    Best of luck.

  3. My youngest also suffers from depression...thanks for the heads up on the book...hugs abby

  4. My daughter is going through this now. Started in August. Actually, started two years ago. I just found out in August. And, I just bought the book. Thank you!

  5. Depression is pervasive in our society, it seems. I think its unfortunate that there seems to be such a stigma on it. It is a medical condition, like so many others. With a wide variety of techniques for healing. For some it may be medicine. Others, friends, sunshine, nature etc. Or both.

    Sir suffers from clinical depression. As does my mother. I love them both and always hope that there are new things that will help them.

    I hope this for your child, too!

    1. I'm willing to try everything. He takes medicine, he sees a therapist. We're doing the best we can.


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