Thursday, November 16, 2006

#35 Between Hope and Despair

The holidays are marching in with plans for get togethers, baking, shopping trips - in years past this time of year has been my favorite - Even last year I threw myself into the season - in an attempt to make it the best Christmas ever, a kind of celebration that David was still with us - In this I made a grave mistake and missed the important signs that were pointing to the fact that David was headed into depression and another attempt at suicide. This year I feel quite ambivalent - confused as to which way to turn - on one hand my usual excitement is building - I am beginning to make lists and plans - but in a way I hesitate to even think of the Holiday - I am becoming ultra vigilant watching David's every move - hoping that the season will not affect him as it did last year - and as I watch - I see odd signs that things might not be as well as I hoped - for instance I have been going up at least once a week to clean his apartment, take up his medicine, and bring back his laundry. This week I bought a cheap set of sheets so that I could bring his back to wash and he mentioned that he had only slept in his bed a few times - it then dawned on me that his bedroom looked unlived in - in fact it appeared that he spent most of his time on the futon in front of the TV watching SouthPark - all the seasons were spread out over the floor and every time I walked in the show was on - with the same episodes he has watched at least a hundred times each. I suggested that he come home the next day to stay a night since he is about out of medicine - still on the waiting list at the new psychiatrist - and our family doctor said if he came in he would write a couple months worth of his medicine - David mumbled some excuses and refused - and it was then that I knew he had built himself a tight routine in a tight space not doubt for reassurance - the familiar was comforting to him - and now that I think on it - he really hasn't been going anywhere except class, my brother's apartment, and the occasional dinner out with his grandma - he must feel safest there in his own spot with SouthPark playing over and over - I think of him as a child - always upset when his structure was threatened. He has said that he's coming home for Thanksgiving, but now I wonder how hard it will be to get him to leave his nest - and what is he pushing out by these self isolating actions - the Holidays - the same winter blues that snowballed into madness last year. Should I be concerned about this? Should I force him to come home for the holidays? I really don't know if he refuses if I could stand carrying on as usual thinking of him sitting alone on his futon, eating roman noodles and watching Kenny die for the billionth time - or am I not being realistic - I think sometimes I give into the illusion that this illness will someday just be gone - I must remind myself that my son is mentally ill and as long as he is content in the life he is living - why should I urge him to change?

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