Sunday, April 02, 2006

I Need To Blog and It Can't Be Depressing Because I'm Going to Lose My Friends

So, yeah, the title sums it up.
I know you guys are so sick of Heartbreak Hotel Brittany.
So, I started writing a post sans Elvis influence.
But it still ended up being depressing because, ummm, yeah, that's the flavor of the week.

BUT, it wasn't about The Someone.
It was about the letter.

I love mail.
I'm one of those throw-backs to olden days who actually prefers pen and paper.
I like seeing someone's handwriting.
I like the idea that you can't just backspace and delete.
That what you were feeling or thinking was written RIGHT THEN and you couldn't rethink it.

I like how letters smell.
Depending on who wrote it.
My grandmother's letters always smell like Poison.
I'm sure it's because she applies it liberally to her wrists, then while writing, the scent transfers to the paper.
Garrett's letters always smell of Kenneth Cole.
E-mails don't smell.

Friday's letter smelled like linen.
That off-kilter smell that all linen has, no matter how often you wash it.
There was no handwriting.
Just type-written letters spelling out my greatest fears.
I knew it when I saw the return address.
When I saw the envelope with the glossy window.
I refused to open it.
Tonight was about fun. Robin's birthday. Friends, good food, presents and cake. Laughter, reminiscing, good-natured ribbing, loyalty and love.
No letters.

But as the laughter died down and the house began to empty, the letter was on my mind.
I couldn't wait any longer.
Leaving the lingerers in the living room, I took the letter to the bathroom.
Unusual lab results.
High readings.
Normal range <40.
Your range >500.

It will sound crazy, but I was relieved.
At least I wasn't wondering anymore.
I knew what it said.
And, as always, I will deal with it.
I will be fine.
I am fine.
I plastered the smile back on my face and went back to friends.
Serving pie and cake, washing dishes in the sink, hugging people goodbye.

And the conversation I had months earlier with a friend returned.
"I don't think it would be fair to be loved. It's not fair to require someone to go through these things with me. To watch them hurt because I'm sick or hurting."
And think maybe God does have his reasons for things not working out sometimes.

Yes, it is more than possible that these readings mean nothing.
Just something out of whack.
Restructure the medications again.
Add some things, take some things away.
Illness as my body reacclimates itself to the changes.
Exercise to combat the chemical changes that play havoc on my metabolism.
But it's something I get to do alone again.

I won't feel the guilt I used to feel watching Ron or Jeff take off work to go to the doctor with me, out of a sense of obligation and loyalty.
The anger at having them constantly remind me that I couldn't or shouldn't do something just because I'm technically sick.
The shame I felt when I couldn't do the things for them I always had, be the person I had always been, because I was too tired or too depressed to do them or be that.
The degradation of having to ask for help to do the millions of things I volunteer for when I'm well, but can't handle alone when I'm not.

As I type this, I'm looking at my brother and his friends sitting around my living room.
Wishing I could spare him, as well.
Trying not to pick a fight.
Something to make him angry enough at me to leave me alone for a while.
So he won't have to see it start again.

But I'm jumping ahead of myself.
It's possible it's nothing.
But as Jeff said so aptly, years ago: “With your medical history, with everything you’ve been through, with the medications you’re on . . . do you think it’s nothing? . . . "

14 comments:

PJ said...

You know, I'm a huge fan of yours. I have read through many of your old posts and even though I don't comment a lot, I'm truly impressed and encouraged by you. You have been through so much and it seems like you don't get the chance to heal and work through one thing without getting hit with another.... and all of it BIG stuff. I'm not sick of what you write - just wish I could do more to help. Keep writing - it's great therapy. And give yourself lots and lots of grace.

I'm praying for you!!!

Scorpy said...

Brittany..I love your writing and your feelings. I don't care if they are melancholy or blue...because they all convey a deeper sense of you. You never BLAME anyone..you do however express yourself better than most.
My LLs write a letter every week to someone they know (grandparents or even me) and we go thru the motions of mailing it and waiting for the replies. It makes them happy and helps with thier learning, people and expression skills. All kids shoulkd learn to write letters. Saty safe and Stay well

Ang said...

If there was anything I could do...
If there was anything I could say...

For now I am an ear, a shoulder, a friend!

meghansdiscontent said...

Pam - Thank you so much! I wish I knew how to respond to this. . . I guess I forget that people read and don't comment. And at times, I forget how my life must look to outsiders. It does seem like every time I start to pick myself up, I'm knocked back down. I guess I never realize it because I'm always just happy to be able to try and get up again. Thank you for your prayers and your support, it means so much.

Scorpy - Who is there to blame? Honestly? I guess on some level, I have always thought that life is what you make of it. If any blame is to be assigned, it's only yours to shoulder. I can't blame anyone else for the things that have happened in my life. Just me. Things don't happen to people. Things are what we make them. On a totally separate note, I'm so glad you have your girls write letters!!! It's such a lost art. And it teaches us so much about communicating with one another. If they need someone else to write to, let me know. :)

Ang - Oh girl, there's nothing anyone can do. Just me. Always, just me. But I promise I'm getting back to your email like ASAP!

Steph said...

sweetheart, leave it to the likes of me to do the vapid, attention whoring. YOU have much to say, and a beautiful way of saying it, even though a lot of times your posts make us sad. We are only sad because we love you, and want you to be happy, healthy and smiling.

Your blog is an outlet for you. It's kinda like therapy. We are all here along for the ride, and to hold your hand....in a virtual sense for most of us, if you need us.

Don't change a thing. ((Hugs))

Jenni said...

I think you've hung the moon no matter what you write. You're that fabulous. No matter what the test means...you've got a legion of invisible people pulling and praying for you. Don't push your bro away, no matter what. YOU wouldn't want to be pushed away if he was going thru something similar. He should be close for both comic relief and a hug when you need it. **Hugs for Meghan**

Coyote Mike said...

It is hard to keep in mind that all we see are moments of your time. There is so much more to you than what we see. I agree with whoever said above that this is like your therapy.

And I would love to write you a letter. I sent you an e-mail, and if you want a poorly spelled and incomprehensibly written letter, let me know.

Add my hugs to the hugs of others.

Faltenin said...

Big hugs, my dear.

You have my email address. It's there to be used.

Laurie (aka buggy) said...

damn i did a post and it didn't show up.

basically i said i can guess by you having to plaster a smile on your fact that he was a pussy in that letter.

and that no matter how hard we try to ignore them, our feelings always win.

and that you don't have to not express your bittersweet feelings or your anger or any sadness that is coming on with all of this.

like a few other people said here, this is somewhere where you can write about it, and we want to know how you feel.

Laurie (aka buggy) said...

plaster a smile on your "face" not your "fact."

trueborn said...

((Hugs))

Drunken Chud said...

well hon. even though you think you're alone. you got us. and when you're at your at your weakest, i will pounce. that's how i roll. i'm more like a hyena than a lion. i wait till you can't say no... hehe. sorry. it's my M.O.

janestarr said...

Meg- drunken chud has a point apart from the hyena-pouncing part, that we are here if you need us. Spilling our guts and depression, it is what is great about the blogosphere, life on high-tilt, nothing wrong with that. Take care of you.

meghansdiscontent said...

Steph - Whateva! You're not in charge of vapid, attention whoring! You're in charge of amazing stories that make us laugh and remind us that we should be laughing! But, I get what you're saying. Be me. And I am. I promise. Just feel like sometimes I'm the most depressing blog in the whole wide world. Love ya for helping though. And sticking with me.

Jenni - Girl, I don't deserve friends and readers like you guys. You people are so effing wonderful. I'm sitting here crying. As for bro, I didn't have the chance to push him away . . my damn mother told him everything. His way of cheering me up was to come over and say "I hear you're all depressed, I'm here to cheer you up, whatcha cookin me for dinner?" -- not his exact words, but seriously the gist. Goofy boy.

Coyote Mike - Thank you! And, yeah, you guys do only see a little bit. You only see the bad bits, it seems. The good bits get lost. And I'm sorry for that.

Faltenin - Thank you, sir. :)

Laurie - Chica, you, of all people, know how I feel! Thanks for being my rock in the past few weeks. You're a doll.

Trueborn - Thanks, sweetie.

Chud - Good lord, remind me to watch my back in dark alleys!

Janestarr - Thank you, chica. I just feel like the blog is so bipolar sometimes. Highs and lows and no in-betweens. Mostly lows lately.