Here it is, 3:00am and I can’t sleep. I downed to sleeping pills and two klonopin with a heavy could shots of liquor, which I’m feeling the effects of now. I know.. I know better. I need to wrangle my liquor consumption under strict control.

So.. What’s keeping me up? Horrible depression. Worse than it’s been in the last few years. I’m at a loss. Thoughts of suicide plague my mind every few seconds to every few minutes. It’s not about anything specific. No triggers that I’m aware of. I’m just exhausted.. Physically and emotionally. I’m tired.. I’ve been worse off than this before and I know I can endure through it, which I will, but this suffering seem like cruelty at this point. I’ve been over self-medicating with alcohol.. Strong alcohol. Take a small drink glass, fill it half with vodka, add to Kahlua and some Baileys to top it off and you have my version of hard chocolate milk. I down about a glass a day that’s filled to the brim. Tonight’s poison was about a 1/3 of a glass of B&B – packs a punch with very little consumption. Equivalent of three shots. I’m hoping tonight’s choice with a couple of klonopin and a couple sleeping pills will knock me out because I need to be online for work at 8:30 and have much to do.

In a few hours we’ll be seeing the fertility clinic to discuss our options. I had a vasectomy 18 years ago and the chances of a reversal working after 15 years is 2%. I don’t care for those odds, so we’ll explore the more invasive techniques offered by the clinic. I don’t mind 2-3 weeks off with an ice pack on my nether regions. It’s part of the goal. I had that vasectomy because the depressions were so bad that I was certain I’d not make it to 30 by my own hand. Turning 40 within the next year, priorities have changed and it’s a step my wife and I are ready to take. I’ve no expectations. If they say it’s simply not possible, the adoption is the next option. I don’t need a child to be part of my own genetics to love them just the same. Some guys get hung up on that, but I don’t. It’s not blood that make a family, it’s the ties that we make.

Here’s the dilemma, though. I suffer from deep and debilitating depressions. I’m in the midst of one of the worst in years. Every minute of every day have visions in my mind of piercing my carotid arteries and bleeding out as quickly as possible, probably taking some aspirin or alcohol beforehand to reduce the chance of clotting with thin blood. Please pardon the graphic nature of that, but after considering many, many options, this seems like a sure-fire way off success. Too many things can go wrong with pills, gunshots aren’t always successful, jumping ha a good chance, but it’s not guaranteed, getting hit by a car or a train at high speed have likely outcomes, but there’s no guarantee. The list goes on.. The last thing I want is a botched attempt and my loved ones having me on life support in an ICU or my being in a vegetative state being a lasting reminder and a constant source of grief by simply being alive, if only physically. Why the urge? I don’t know. All I know if I’m mentally and physically exhausted. I take my meds religiously. I see the therapist weekly. I do the homework in trying to find the root cause of this, but all things point to a chemical imbalance.

At 39 and having dealt with this pretty much the entirety of my life, when is it acceptable to say that we fount the good fight, but it’s time to call it? Doctors can do this with resuscitation attempts. Oncologists can help the patient and family decide when the fight has reached a futile point. Even we can choose when a pet is suffering to the point that their quality of life has turned to one of suffering. Why can’t humans do the same? I know some miracle drug may come along that will over me peace and a sense of well being in my lifetime , but that’s a hell of a gamble.

So, onto the choice to have a child. It’s a conscious choice. It will cost a boatload of money to do so since it’s all elective surgery as well as the IVF. I don’t mind the money part. I’m prepared for that. But.. Is it selfish to want to bring a child into this world knowing that I feel this way more than 60-70% of the time? I can put on the good act, but kids have a way of picking up on things. I don’t want to pass my instability onto our child.

Life goes on… If we have a child, then I’m locked into surviving no matter what for a minimum of 20-24 years. I don’t want to hurt anyone. I don’t want to hurt my wife or our child. I love my wife dearly. I loved my best friend who took her own life many years ago. I loved her as a friend and more than a friend. It took me a decade to just begin to process her death. How could I possibly do that to someone else that I love? The endless questioning of what could have been different.. What could I have said.. Could I have been a better friend.. All of that comes up regularly, even after so long ago. I don’t want that for her. I like my life with her. When she’s around I feel some semblance of peace. Some days that’s all that keeps me going.

So.. Is it selfish having a child with me being a train wreck of a human being? I’m ready for the challenge and am high functioning even when I’m extremely depressed. I can do the necessary parenting things regardless of mental state. Maybe this will give my life some sense of purpose as opposed to just waiting for the clock to run out.. Maybe not. I have to work through that with the therapist.

Hmm.. 3:47am. Time for sleep, I guess.


2 thoughts on “Today”

  1. I’ve had my (worsening) depression since I was 8 years old — all of my life, essentially. The one consistent “relief” from it was/is distraction. Raising four kids was the biggest distraction through my young adult years. Being active in their lives meant I could step away from my own life enuf to feel the depression as only a low-grade bother. (Now that the kids are grown and gone, the depression has worsened.)

    So having a child might be just what you need to overcome your depression. I can’t guarantee it, and it is only a distraction, not a cure. But give it a consideration.

  2. I really appreciate this and your other responses as well, Paul. The process was started today. Based on blood test results that should be in at the end of the week, we should have a better understanding of how to proceed. The referral to a surgeon has been made for me, so I need to schedule that tomorrow. My wife gets an ultrasound this Friday to assess if there might be any problems with her getting pregnant or carrying to term. We live in amazing times.. There are many options from simple to complex to allow us to have a child. My fear is that if I still suffer severe episodes that it will somehow negatively affect him/her/them in the long run. I still get things done when I’m low and cover it well. I’ve worn the ” ok” mask long enough that I don’t even have to think about it. It’s just always on. Kids pick up on things, though. I’d not wish this hell on anyone…

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