An Open Letter To My Daughters
I am writing this in attempt to help you understand what I go through on a daily basis. I am hoping that by giving you more information it will help you be more patient with me. I hope that by knowing this information you will be kinder and gentler with me.
When I was younger, around age 21, I was a harsh human. I woke up everyday looking to argue with anyone that would speak with me. I didn’t care about much other than myself. I made fun of the people around me. I gossiped to no end. I even took actions to get other people in trouble.
I remember a particular indecent with a manager. I was angry about having to do something that another person messed up. My manager told me to go and fix it and I went to him and told him I would not do it. We got in each others face and began yelling. I was clearly wrong because I just needed to do what my manager told me to do. I felt the need to argue with him simply because I felt above correcting another persons work. How dare he ask me to do it. Thinking back on it now it was just plain defiant for me to not do it.
I tell you this story because I believe it was event that began to shape who I am today. There were more instances similar to the one above but there was one that really cemented me to my personality today. That event was the divorce from your dad. We married young and were in trouble from year one. We fought our way through 13 years of marriage and finally threw in the towel in 2004. The moment that was pivotal in that decision was watching how he handled things with the divorce. Depression runs in my family but I had not felt the need to address it until 2004. I will not share the actions that led me to medicate myself but I began taking depression medicine in 2004 and followed up by visiting a therapist.
I didn’t feel like I was gaining much insight with the therapist but I did feel better with the medicine I was taking. I stopped seeing the therapist after about six weeks and changed my medicine to better suit me. I did everything I could to focus on the two of you. I hated that I was putting you through such a traumatic experience at such a young age. Somehow I felt that things would be alright because you would have your father in your life. We now know, some 12 years later, that he is less than stellar in the father department and that won’t change. That is still something that haunts me terribly because I can’t control it.
You girls know that there are other things that I don’t control very well. I spend when I should save. I am not sure how to fix that just yet but I am sure it is something I will address with a therapist soon. My spending problem is just once cause for our current struggle. The other reason we struggle to pay our bills is because I don’t go to work daily. This is because, as you know, I suffer from migraines and depression.
I am in a vicious cycle that for some reason, you two don’t understand very well. I hear you say “Just get up.” or “You have to go to work no matter what.” I hear you make fun of me for not going to work and you have shared my issues with people you interact with. It hurts me to know this. You don’t have much empathy for my issues. This exacerbates my vicious cycle because I feel misunderstood. It hurts me that you don’t have more compassion for me. Please know that I WANT to get up daily and do what I am supposed to. I want to be able to pay the bills without having to borrow money from people. I want to have money to get take you do the movies. It’s just not that easy for someone like me. Do you really understand what depression feels like?
Depression is the bully that you keeps me pinned down. It punches me in the chest and makes it hard to walk. Depression feels like there is a house sitting on my shoulders. It makes my mind go in all directions or be completely blank of feeling and thought. It makes me feel stuck to my bed and in our home. Depression makes push people away yet long for their return.
I am sorry that I can’t give you what you need exactly when you need it. I am sorry that I am flippant and don’t pay attention to you sometimes. I can see the disappointment in your eyes and it hurts me to the core. I want to be a better person for you. I want you to be able to be proud of me. Please know that I love you very much and want the best for our family. I am making small changes that should result in progress. Please don’t expect everything to be better right away. It will take time with the small changes I make.
I hope this has given you some insight into what I go through. Please know that I love you very much and want the best for you both. You are my life!