I was sitting in the car at a stop light earlier this morning and Sum 41’s “With Me” came on the radio, courtesy of my old iPod that hasn’t been updated since probably 2010. Instantly, the song took me back in time and I nearly teared up. It made me think back to a month or so ago, when something similar happened, but this time with Less Than Jake’s “The Rest Of My Life.” At the time, I was in a severely depressed state and was fighting with suicidal ideation. The song came on about 4:30 in the morning, as I was pulling into the parking lot of my office. I probably hadn’t heard the song in five or more years, but I knew the words. And those words hit me like a ton of bricks.
I started crying in a parking spot outside work. Luckily at 4:30 in the morning, there’s not a lot of people to notice. Plus it’s dark. But I started thinking that it would be the song I wanted people to hear when I was dead. As the course played and rolled into the second verse, I wept uncontrollably. Thinking of all my mistakes, all the wasted times, all the words I never said, and just everything that had been bringing me down over the last year or two. Depression loves a person like me who can’t let go of the past. That way it can fester and build upon all those events that you play over and over in your head. Depression loves that you can’t seem to let go of feelings for someone who has moved on. Depression is always looking for an in. A crack in the dam. A window left unlatched. Depression doesn’t mind waiting, and all I could hear was it shouting at me, over those lyrics being played through dry-rotted car speakers.
It’s gonna kill me the rest of my life
Let me apologize while I’m still alive
I know it’s time to face, all of my past mistakes
It’s gonna kill me for the rest of my life
This is my all time low
Somehow it feels so familiar
Somehow it seems so familiar
I feel like letting go
And every second that goes by
I’m screaming out for a second try
Said goodbye, to my best friend
Sometimes there’s no one left to tell you the truth
I wanted to die, or at the very least lay in the warm embrace of the shambles of my life. In those situations, I go back to blaming myself for transitioning. As if *not* transitioning wouldn’t have killed me by now. But that’s not what I think about. Depression tells me that I’m here because I decided to transition. It’s partly true, but not 100% accurate. There are elements of truth in there, but it’s so much more than that. In any event, I didn’t die. I didn’t wallow. I dried my eyes and trudged into work, begrudgingly.
Flashback to today. I’m sitting in the car, thinking about that and simultaneously thinking about how much better my outlook is at the moment. The problems are all the same. I’m still all the things I said up a couple of paragraphs, but my mental health has improved. Nothing in my life changed, except that I finally got treatment for my ADD. When I can focus on tasks, I don’t have time to obsess over shit that I can’t fix. Sure, many of those things still run through my brain about as many times as a 14 year old boy thinks about sex in an hour, but I can not let it paralyze my day and my life. It’s been about three weeks since I started taking Adderall and it’s not without its own drawbacks, but the pros outweigh the cons. I’m happier, I’m struggling less at school and I’m getting more done at work.
I still haven’t found an antidepressant that works for me. My treating psychiatrist has had me gene tested to determine a treatment course, but I’ve not been able to see the results yet. I am thinking that with the combination of ADD treatment and an effective antidepressant, I might be able to get a hold on everything and be in a much better place. Even from where I am right now, which is not so terrible.
Note: Title comes from The Early November’s track of the same name.