I’m writing in my pyjamas. I need to go to bed soon, as my holiday is now over (I lost more or less the whole thing to depression) and I need to get up at 6 o’clock tomorrow morning for work. I’m glad to be going back, as I hope the structure and distraction will help my mental health. However, I need to write to get my thoughts down otherwise I won’t sleep, as I’m quite emotional. I will try to write quickly. Apologies if this isn’t up to my usual standard (assuming I have one).
I went out this evening to my sister’s fiancé’s flat with my parents, my sister and my sister’s fiancé’s parents. There were some kashrut issues, so I wasn’t sharing my food with everyone else. I won’t go into all the details, but I was mostly OK with it, but there was a bit of OCD. At least I think it was OCD and not a genuine concern, but I’m worried I may ask a rabbi during the week.
I found it hard to join in the conversation at first. It got easier as the evening went on, but I still found it hard to look at my sister’s fiancé’s parents or make eye contact with them, which I worried made it look as if I was talking to everyone else but them. Also, as time went on the conversation focused more and more on wedding arrangements and I felt left out and also depressed, as I can’t imagine ever having a wedding of my own.
On the way home I was feeling quite depressed and I now feel very depressed (and worried about how I will cope at work tomorrow, but I guess that’s another story). Someone at shul yesterday said, “Joy by yourself is nothing, but joy shared with others is something special.” I found myself wondering who I can share joy with. I have my parents and my sister and now her fiancé, but I don’t have many friends and those I do have tend to live far away and I rarely see or hear from them. Sometimes I wonder if I mean as much to them as they mean to me. I think they matter to me a lot, but I find it hard to express it, in words or actions (e.g. seeing them – the social anxiety can still kick in and prevent me from seeing them as much as, on some level, I would like) and sometimes it’s hard to work out what I feel towards them. Another issue with sharing joy is that I often feel conscious of mortality, my own and those around me. I know my parents will not be here forever and, selfishly, I worry what will happen to me then. I sometimes start thinking about death at inappropriate times, as happened this evening.
I’ve heard a lot in the last few days of people with real tzores (suffering): divorce and single-parenthood, cancer, extreme poverty, gender dysphoria. My heart bleeds for these people, but I still feel depressed. For years I have been finding at least five things every day to thank God for, which was supposed to build gratitude, but I still feel depressed and lonely, and now I just feel guilty and ungrateful too. God has given me so much, and yet my parents and the few friends I have are not enough; I want more and closer friends, a community where I really belong and a wife and children I can love and who love me. I feel selfish and ungrateful for saying all this, but that is what I want. Someone on the denofgeek.com Geeks vs. Loneliness thread said that the worst thing that ever happened to you is still the worst thing that ever happened to you, even if much worse things happen to other people (and I guess my suffering, even if it isn’t as bad on some kind of scale of suffering as that of other people, has been going on for most of my life, so I haven’t really experienced true happiness since I was a young child). I suppose that’s true, but I still feel fairly selfish and ungrateful, but also still depressed and lonely.
There is probably more to say, but I must go to bed now.