It’s funny how many people have recommended me a holiday ever since I got ill. I’m starting to think that travel agencies are doing some shady advertising work on the mental health side to boost their sales.
It’s such a healthy person’s solution: Go on a holiday! You’ll feel so much better when you’re back. They think about themselves, when they have been stressed out and how rejuvenated they have felt as a result of a getaway. It must work the same with mental illness, right?
You’re just depressed in a different climate. After stressing out about packing a right amount of meds, enduring the additional stress of travel and getting all set up at the destination you find yourself thinking what was the point of this exercise in the first place.
Believe me, I’d love to get away from it all. The problem is that I’m still there. As far as I’m concerned, my shitty brain is at the epicentre of the original problem I wanted to get away from in the first place.
Because my parents live in a different country, everyone seems to think that either visiting them or them visiting me is going to make a difference. I speak to my parents every day. We’re very involved in each others’ lives, we’re just not physically present. People get too hung up on the physical distance. My parents could be living down the road and not give a shit about me.
Now I’ve taken a bit of a cop-out form of a holiday and come to visit my parents in Finland for a few days. Over the years I’ve become increasingly detached from my birth country and the few people I’m still in touch with are my sole reason I bother to turn up. This is another thing people who haven’t lived abroad have a hard time understanding. How can you not feel nostalgic about the country you were born and raised in?
Also, depression-travelling (depressioning? deprevelling? I’m trying to come up with a hashtag-able name here) is also annoying in the sense that you can’t get excited about it. With my rational hat on I know that I love seeing my parents and pets for the first time in six months. I just don’t feel it. Despite all the progress I’ve made in these last recent months. I try not to dwell on it but it’s quite disheartening to say the least.
I haven’t told them this. I don’t want to hurt their feelings.
The good thing about staying at my parents is that there is no social pressure. In any other form of holidaying I’d have this pressure to enjoy myself. Since I paid all this money and everything. I’m supposed to have fun. My ability to have fun has been seriously compromised in the course of the past eighteen months as it is. I don’t enjoy the activities I used to enjoy, let alone things I was anxious about even when I was healthy.
I’m not good at trying out new things. I prefer the old things, which I know I enjoy. If I was on holiday to somewhere I haven’t been to, even with close friends, I know I’d feel anxious about not enjoying myself, worrying that I’m ruining it for everyone. So going to my birth country is a total cop-out but I try to be nice to myself. I’m having hard time as it is here, need to cut myself some slack somewhere.
But I’m staying with the two people who brought me into existence. I can be as pathetic as I like. I can stay in bed all day reading and cuddling the dogs. It’s great. Also this is the only hotel I know that does my laundry for me. As laundry is the one job I don’t seem to be able to motivate myself to do until I’ve literally run out of clothes, it’s great. Also I have zero pressure in exploring the local sights because I know them already like the back of my hand.
This is actually a bad example because I just found a scar I’ve no idea where it came from on back of my right hand. Has anyone else noticed that their pain threshold has increased with depression? I’m talking about a very visible scar. That shit must’ve hurt but I’ve completely missed it.
With that it’s good to finish this captain’s log. God help us all.
These are some thoughts on the first day of my holiday. If you’re not interested in hearing about my first depression-excursion (deprexcursion?), I recommend you ignore this blog for a while.