One week from today, I will be 41 years old. I have plenty of thoughts on this, but since it doesn’t make much sense to share them a week early, I figured I would just stick to the usual Tuneful Tuesday routine – except I’m going to talk about getting older next week. Makes sense, right?
I had always believed that turning 40 would be a somewhat traumatic experience. I was somewhat surprised last year, then, when my 40th birthday came and went without much of a bump at all. If anything, I felt relieved I had actually managed to live that long, mainly because of some weird belief I used to have that I wouldn’t live to see 40. I have no idea why I thought that. Looking back, it makes even less sense to me now. Nevertheless, I felt a certain kind of joy at having made it that far.
From 40 to 41, though, has been a different sort of beast. I dove headlong into learning all I could about depression, and at times I’ve gotten kind of swallowed up in the pursuit. I’ve gone through strange periods of dullness, where nothing particularly interested me all that much. I’ve experienced extreme sadness and bouts of melancholy. At times, I’ve felt sort of alone, as if I’m on some sort of island. In short, it has been a trying and taxing year.
The thing about it is, though, I’ve been through it all before.
I have no idea if this is correct, but I’m beginning to get the impression that living with dysthymia involves a long series of falling down and getting back up, of learning and re-learning lessons over and over again. The tough seasons and years come, and they do their best to drag you down, but somehow you still find yourself standing and even finding relief for long stretches of time. It may not be ideal, but what about life is ideal anyway?
“It’s times like these, you learn to live again…”
Happy birthday to me.