My Novels

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Today at the doctor's office I had so many thoughts that I'd like to capture, but I didn't have this QuickPad with me. Nevertheless, I'm going to attempt to write what I remember.

First off, I really like the lady doctor; and the nurse practioner is even better. Certainly, they both communicate more effectively than any male doctor I've ever known. And both the women had more compassion and understanding for "female" issues as well. I am definitely changing GPs.

As to the thoughts I had...when the nurse practioner was asking about my past medical history, and my family's medical history, I found myself having difficulty explaining about my youngest sister's recent mental breakdown. I realized that no matter how many times you see and hear others acknowledge THEIR mental/emotional problems, it is NOT easy to do.

I realized as I stammered through the details of my sister's condition that I was almost "apologizing" for her behavior, and the nurse (and later doctor) kept reassuring me by saying, "It's okay, that's okay, it happens...etc."

Then when I began to describe some of my own emotional difficulties, it became evident that I have similiar traits to my youngest sister. Mood swings, anxiety, depression, and insomnia at times. At which point the nurse suggested if I ever felt like I needed medication to even out my moods, it could be prescribed. But I didn't get anything today, except Ambien to help with occasional sleepless nights.

After thinking about this later, I have to admit that it was in some way shameful to me, that I didn't want to be associated with any kind of mental and/or emotional problem. Furthermore, I believe that is because here in the South it is considered "weakness"...possibly even "moral weakness" to have any kind of psychological problem. As if dealing with life -- no matter how devastating -- should be done with strength and, if necessary, suffering. Probably this comes from what little "church/christian" influence I had as a child. It is certain that most religious people say to rely on "god" and not medication and/or counseling. Consequently, I didn't escape unscathed from the "southern baptists brainwashing" of the Bible Belt after all.

Or maybe it is uniquely my family position as the eldest child, never wanting to admit "needing" anyone or any help of any kind? For I am indeed seriously, rabidly independent, nearly unable to ever ask for help and/or admit to needing assistance or anything for that matter. The absolute worst time of my life was when I was seriously ill in my early 20s, the feeling of helplessness and having to rely on others. Often I think if I became terminally ill, I'd just kill myself before I became dependent on others.

I'm not sure if this attitude is good or bad. For me, that is. I know the negative aspect is that I won't reach out for friendship, won't ask for help, won't even attempt to bridge the gap between want and need. The positive aspect is that I have always been a survivor, and never a follower, never part of the herd mentality, more of a solitary free- thinker. And that has helped my writing, made me a writer to some extent.

Yet I am left wondering what will happen someday when and if I need help?


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