Prolly best to listen to while reading this post. Honestly, if you CAN listen to it, you should. It’s an excellent song:

Nothing could’ve prepared me.

They could’ve told me that I’d been depressed and I still wouldn’t have expected that walking into my apartment, I’d see just how depressed I’d been. I confirmed my fears with Ben, who explained that my house had ALWAYS looked like this.

It was an epic fucking disaster – and not just because I’d been in and out of there for the past 5 months. Certainly, the hairballs and fur on the rug were from the cats who’d been, I can only imagine, expressing their displeasure at my absence. Or perhaps it was just 5 months of cat hair untouched by a vacuum.

Either way, I wanted to scream.

They tell you to make sure you’re wearing clean underwear every day in the off-chance you get struck by a bus and require an extended recovery far from home. You don’t want the doctors to see your stanky underwear now, do you?

(the toe-tapping guilt trip is, as always. implied)

But they DON’T tell you that you should prepare your home the same way. And I think they should.

It’s the same feeling – magnified about 3,927,383 times. If you get hit by a bus unless you’re on Grey’s Anatomy or happen to be a place where a bazillion doctors operate, the paramedics are the ones who’ll be seeing your stanky underoos. And if you’re in particularly bad shape, you’ll have those puppies torn off you like BAM.

But your home? The place you live? The direct reflection of you? That’s a little different and a HELL of a lot more telling of a lot of things. Including ones mental state. Which is what I learned when I came home.

No doubt that my life had been in shambles more times than not after I moved out of Dave’s house, but I hadn’t realized just how bad things had gotten. And how horrifically depressed I’d been. I could only see that once I came home, well, happy.

Life notwithstanding, I’ve got a lot to be UNhappy about:

I lost my dream job after my second fall – they just couldn’t give me any more time off. Despite being massively hurt, I understand completely. That means, though, that I have to find a new jobity-job by the end of April – which is always a tremendous stress. I’m living on such a fixed budget, I can’t even pay my bills, which are, naturally, mostly medical now. Bills are, by nature, a big stress to me, and not because of the money. Even when I have money, the act of paying bills freaks me the fuck out. I’d moved away from St. Charles for a while and have to move back to be closer to my family, so if this – God forbid – happens again, I have local help. St. Charles happens to be wicked expensive, so I need to find a decent job. More stress.

Once again, I have to start over from scratch. While before this would have led me down a sinkhole self-loathing, I’m absolutely fine.

Inexplicably, I have the coma to thank for it.

When the doctors told my parents I was a goner (which may or may not be my memory filling in the gaps – I was lucid during the coma, just in another reality. I spent most of that time trying like hell to get back to this life), they were visited by a psychiatrist who suggested, as a last-ditch effort, ECT.

Because they had nothing left to lose, they agreed to ECT. Shock therapy. Y’know, the highly controversial medical procedure used to treat major depressive episodes and treatment-resistant depression?

Before you skip to the comments to tell me why this was a Colossally Bad Idea (capital letters, of course, implied),  let me make this clear – I am NOT getting into a debate about the relative merits and pitfalls of of ECT. It was absolutely the BEST thing that’s happened to me.

Why? I can hear you screaming into your computer from here. Why o! why are we not going to have this debate?

Because it fucking woke me the fuck up. I snapped out of that fucking coma like WOAH.

And because I was told it was a miracle that I woke up, I have a new lease on life. I’m happy. For the first time in a long fucking time, I’m truly happy. No longer dark and twisty.

But don’t worry, Pranksters, I promise I’m not going to turn into a person who has inspirational quotes at the bottom of my emails. My handwriting may have changed completely since I woke up, but my blog will not suddenly become one of those “look at my perfect life” blogs. Those still make me want to fling poo.

My house is SLOWLY getting back into shape. (Because my second break and subsequent repair were far more invasive, my ability to bend down and pick heavy things up has been compromised). I updated my resume and started the job search yesterday. Things are progressing – albeit more slowly than I’d like – and I’m taking it one day at a time.

And for the first time, well, ever, I’m trusting that things will work out the way they work out and that’s that. I’m no longer fighting The Universe about things I cannot control.

It’s just time to let go.


So, now I’ve caught you (sorta) up to date on what’s been going on with me, what about YOU, Pranksters? I’ve been gone a good long while and I assume your life has drastically changed as well. Pull up a chair, grab a Vicodin-chip cookie, and tell Your Aunt Becky all about what’s been going on with you!

26 thoughts on “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest

  1. Actually, check out the Reedster Speaks’ recent commentary on ECT. She reports similar results to yours, though it (happily) didn’t take a coma for her to try the therapy. I’m SO GLAD it worked. ECT has changed dramatically since the old-scary days, and, while it’s a kind of last-ditch effort for a lot of things, when it works, it’s holy-hell-wow-yay! I won’t hope you have fun exactly cleaning your apartment, but I will hope it leaves you with a feeling of achievement and satisfaction. No inspirational quotes to follow 😉

  2. Aunt Becky, it’s so good to have you back! Sounds like you had a to hell-and-back adventure…but happily, you seem to have come out on the right side. And isn’t it odd to think of all things happening and leading to this? If you hadn’t snapped yourself in the first place, would you still be in a hole you didn’t even realize you were in? Yet, here you stand, sit, whatever you’re doing leg-wise right now, better than ever. Yay!!!!!

    As for me, not that you knew anything about me to begin with, lots has changed here, too. I still have social anxiety. And other random anxieties. And I still fight them each and every day. Because it’s what you do. But I went from being a bored, lonely, stay-at-home mom who knew she loved to be a maker of things, but kinda drifting about things to make (stained glass, french beaded flowers, felted sculpture, jewelry, to name just a few), to working in a real job. That I hated with the blinding white hot flames of Hell. Well, maybe not that bad, but I certainly didn’t like it.

    And now back to being a stay-at-home mom…but now I know what I make. I twist balloons. I twist at birthday parties, I twist at various events. In fact, I’m twisting at Northwest Indiana Comic-con this weekend if you care to come and get your nerd on. I make sculptures and bouquets and I’m always thinking about balloons and how to improve this or that.

    And while my anxiety is still always there…I find it’s not as bad. Which seems strange. Because let’s take a person with mild to moderate social anxiety and stick her in the middle of a group and make her perform. But I’m good at it. And I have fun at it. And strangely, I’m even making money at it. People pay me to be the odd person in the crowd.

    Now, my house? It was never tidy. And with each subsequent hobby, it’s just gotten worse. And now that I’ve turned the dining room into my workshop, it really isn’t getting any better. I just have too much stuff crammed in the house. But I’ve got my silly back. And I’m happy.

    Here’s to finding your happy, and your silly, and maybe even a clean table top here and there! *clinking of glasses*

  3. Hey sweets. I’m glad you’re better. Please stay on your meds. ECT can be really helpful with psychosis and catatonia but it’s not a long-term solution and it’s easy to think that the reset button of ECT is good enough and that meds aren’t needed. I’m so glad you’re on an upswing but make sure you’re on the proper meds to keep from falling down that hole again. It’s hard, I know. No shame. Love.

  4. I have a bit of a neurosis about leaving my house in good order when I expect to be away for more than a couple days – because, what if I never come back and someone has to come and clean it out?

    Glad to hear something worked for you – I hope that you remain depression-free, and that your job search is short and fruitful.

  5. Hooray for whatever works! And thanks for the music. It was, indeed, double-plus good. HUGS!

    I’ve been writing, writing, writing, as always. Got a book in audio now — my first in audio, so yay for that. Sold a story. My youngest kid is now an archaeologist. SHUT UP — I AM NOT MAKING THAT UP! Good times, good times. Glad to have AB back. 🙂

  6. I am … ummmm … apprehensive about the things you describe recently, and where you REALLY are in life. As a long-time, IRL friend of both you AND Dave, there is much conflict …,

    1. Because THIS is the place true friends would address such a thing. In the comments of a blog. You actually care? Send her an email. Friends usually have email addresses. And phone numbers. Or they stop by.

      Friends don’t troll. Whether they believe what is being said or not.

      1. You don’t know? AB cut all her “true” friends out of her life because she thrives off internet friends she can manipulate. Don’t you get this is a long con? You’ve fallen for it, Internet Friend.

        And, yes, former friends do troll. It’s the only way she “hears” feedback, albeit, if it isn’t ego stroking, or specifically designed to make her look like a victim, it will either be be ignored or scrubbed.

        We’ve all been manipulated past the point of sympathy, let alone empathy. She’ll be lucky if we feel a modicum of pity.

        1. I would like to point our, I didn’t actually say whether I believed everything or not. But this is Becky’s blog. She can say whatever the hell she wants. As does Dana on her “blog”. I’m not defending Becky, I’m defending her blog. Becky can defend herself. I have enjoyed her writing for a long time and I don’t actually care if she’s actually a man living in Poughkeepsie.

          However, what I’m sick of are “friends” airing their dirty laundry in a public forum. If you are friends, do it the right way. And if she doesn’t want to hear from you? That’s her business.

          You aren’t morally obligated to set it straight. If you don’t feel sympathy then why are you reading it? Why are you here? Schaedenfreude, anyone? If you’re going to reach out and call yourself a friend, try not to be an ass about it. No one needs to see that.

          Again, FRIENDS don’t troll. Troll away if you want to, but don’t pretend to be a friend while you do it.

        2. {waiving} Hi! Real life friend of Becky’s here. I talk to her pretty much daily – as we have for YEARS. Former “friends” should really just move on and deal with their own lives instead of worrying about Becky’s.

        3. I think it’s sweet that you still check her blog to make sure she’s OK. Obviously you still care…. Otherwise, why even take the time to post and then defend your post?

          1. You know? I’ve always posted/addressed Becky as me – no hiding behind an anonymous face – no pretending to be someone i’m not. Yet still, I’m called a troll.

            Becky? You’ve now blocked me on Facebook and do not respond to my comments on your blog. Somehow, I think that says FAR more about you than it does me.

            I do hope that you find your way – that you embrace those of us who have been with you for YEARS, not months (like the majority of commenters here).

            We all want you to be healthy and happy! REALLY!!

            I think about you often and wish you the best!!

            1. Hey Dana,

              You’re right – you have known me for years and you DON’T hide behind an anonymous screen name. I appreciate that. I didn’t reply to your comment before because you sounded awfully condescending, you insinuated that you had inside knowledge of my life (which is remarkable, for someone who hasn’t seen me in years. Dave doesn’t have much IDEA of what’s going on with me) like I was keeping this! big! secret!, and like she said – if you really wanted to know what’s up with me, you’d get in contact with me privately.

              Neither my phone number nor my email address has changed in the 3-4 years we’ve been out of contact.

              I often think of you as well. I’d love to be able to rekindle our friendship – honestly. I blocked you on Facebook because I thought you were just one of those gaping at the mess of my life, and, frankly, I don’t need more of that. If you’re there as a support, that’s awesome because I just (figured out how to) unblocked you.

              I look forward to catching up with you.

              1. And this is why many of you need to stop judging the commentators who you claim are trolls. When you are on the “outside”, things can look very differently than when you actually know what is going on.

                *repairing friendship*

  7. Uh, this whole saga sounds completely made up. By a twelve year old. I think you really need to get some help. Whether it’s rehab or a prescription from your psychiatrist, I can’t tell, but either way you are very very sick. No shame in either, but stop trying to spin it here. Apparently you have fooled some of your readers but rest assured their numbers are dwindling. Good grief.

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