I have written about this subject before. I had a fairly nasty trip about a week ago. It started sometime Wednesday during the day and got progressively worse as at the day progressed, peaking on Thursday. I went down the rabbit hole, passed the rabbits on my way down and started digging the hole deeper when I got to the bottom, sprlitting my finger nails, coating myself in rabbit shit and dirt. At some point, I quit digging and just curled up in a ball and laid there, feeling sorry for myself and began making horrid decisions about myself; but even more dangerous and in completely a giant cess pool of ignorance, stupidity and downright ridiculousness, I started making decisions for other people without them even knowing where I was or what the fuck rabbit shitedness was going on.
By the way, most of my many tattoos have some kind of some kind of inherent connection to my life and various shenanigans throughout my traipsing around on this mortal coil. This rabbit is out of the hole, jumping away with vigor from the ghost dog just below the ditch of my left elbow towards the the strange onward tattoo just below my left elbow. The bunny of course symbolizes my trips digging down through the hole.
All of these tattoos were done at Electric 13 in Central Austin on Guadalupe by Mig Kokinda, Jarret
Crossan, and Gabe Cancino. Paco Cendon is the head Guapo there. I have not gotten a tat from him as of yet but his work is righteous. You could do a lot fucking worse by going someplace else. These guys are friendly, have a great sense of humor and will work with you to get some magical art on your skin.
Ok, back to the rabbit hole adventure. Why do I call it going down the rabbit hole? Not really sure. How about when I'm massively depressed and fucking insurmountably (is that a word? fuck it, it is now) sad with an unhealthy dose of suicidal ideation, I feel a little safer cavorting somewhat with some furry creatures who have some fairly distinct and valuable survival skills. (by the way, it is a word, there; a lesson in vocabulary, something actually useful from this depressing blog entry).
So why did it take a week for me to write about this? We will go by the numbers:
1-I did not want to write it
2-I did not want to think about it
3-I did not want to relive it
4-See numbers 1-3
My friend The Benevolent Gnome suggested that it might be useful to write about as it might help for future trips and maybe, just maybe, someone else might get some use out of reading about if they have similar experiences. Within the last year I am attempting to be honest, do whatever is neccessary to stay alive and to possibly help others; not to mention stop wishing for sweet peaceful death for myself anymore (or at least a lot less).
The Gnome sent me a few questions to help me get through the process so I'm just gonna use most of those queries because it's less work for me.
What was going on before it hit? not completely sure. A combination of things for sure. I had been spending a significant amount of time with my girlfriend but her teenage kids were coming back from her ex so as we are not ready to have me spending the night over there, Luna and I were heading back to the hovel This was actually supposed to be a positive event as we should not be relying on each other for our abject happiness and we each need to get shit done. I have projects I need to work on and am behind on my personal time table. I had been dour and anxious all day long on Wednesday. We went to see Jon Dee Graham and the Fighting Cocks play at the Continental Club so I could record some for one of those said projects. I got home late after GF dropped me off. I took my sleepy meds, read my John Wayne biography for a bit and then hunkered down with my best friend Luna
for nocturnal siesta time and Bob (my fucked up companion in my brain ) decided to kick in and not let me sleep in spite of my meds. I swirled death and destruction around for a while and finally fell asleep. I subsequently had a bunch of nightmares that included conversations with dead friends and relatives (there are primarily three ghosts, all whom died by their own hand: a gunshot, hanging, and suffocation) and also some other ghosts of dead people (a fair amount of them dead by their own hand as well) who I became acquainted with while at my 18 year long travels through attempting to care for the sick and injured of Travis County.
Ok- enough of that:
How did I keep myself safe?
Partly do to a mantra I use for a lot of things. Its called No Matter What: Don't kill yourself, no matter what, Don't drink no matter what, Communicate with some people Motherfucker, Meditate(even if only for a few minutes), Eat, Drink water...shit like that...I am not always successful at all of them, especially the communication, eating and drinking fluids and meditation....so basically I end up concentrating on the Don't off myself and Don't drink no matter what.
How did I keep from going backwards further even though I could not go forwards?
The rabbits get pissed at me when I go down the hole, especially when I dig down past them and make the hole deeper. I have hit the water table a couple of times and flooded the hole, causing the bunnies to have to vacate or do major construction repair. They don't mind me coming down for a brief hello but they don't want me modifying their living quarters. So I listen to the rabbits (yeah, I talk to them) and I talk to my main free ghosts and tell them I really fucking miss them but I really cannot join them just yet.
Any dark thoughts or screwy decisions?
Well, obviously of course. At one point I was in my closet thinking I should hang myself with a work light cord but the No Matter What, the rabbits, my 3 ghosts, and Luna all weighed in pretty quickly and that thought got a lot smaller. I also decided that I was gonna break up with my GF as it was not fair for me to drag her into the maelstrom that Bob spins around in my head at varying levels of destructiveness (anywhere from minor "you are a useless piece of shit" to "this is never going to fucking end, so give in".
How did I pull myself out?
This is a big mix as well. I was in communication with the gnome and my GF to varying degrees and the Gnome reminded me that it was pretty ridiculous to make decisions for other people and that I knew that this shit storm was going to transition to a light sprinkle, just like it always does. My GF kept checking in to see If I needed anything. I did not tell her a lot but she knew I was not feeling good. I just realized the Gnome was right and I would talk to GF when I came out of this (I had convinced myself that it would end by this point, just wasn't sure when). I made a promise to her when we first got together that I would be honest with her all the time and tell her as much as I possibly could about what is going on. She is a 5 year breast cancer survivor, she knows about pain and loss. When I told her about my plan to break up with her to spare her my grief, she just laughed at me. it was actually pretty funny.
What actions did I take?
There was the stuff that was going on above and I decided to write a letter to my Cousin Melissa. Melissa shot herself in the head many years ago when she was 15 years old. She is of course, one of the three primary ghosts. I have done this type of activity before and it is extremely horrible in the middle of the process but at the end, it suddenly feels like I got something done. When I write these letters, I fill whoever it is on what has been going on recently. This practice seems to me to allow that although the ghosts are indeed dead, they might still want to keep up with current affairs.
I also was tapping like a crazy man (no surprise there, when the foo shits, wear it, I am a crazy man)
This is tapping:
This lady is really cool; there are a million videos on You Tube, there are a lot that seem to have some kind of ulterior motive attached to them but this one is a straight demonstration. I tap my fingertips a lot in addition to this, it requires a certain amount of concentration that can dull down Bob's roar.
I also was able to start listening to music (the place had been silent for many hours at this point). I usually start with Nick Cave which of course is fairly dour sometimes but he also writes some amazing love and loss songs. I won't list them here because then I will never finish this missive. But take a look at this video:
There is a short Chilis add that starts the video....just ignore that, and don't, whatever you do, ever ever eat there. That is the blandest bunch of fajitas I have ever seen, that guacamole has been sitting out in the heat of their shitty kitchens for hours creating a fly infested puddle of listeria...you will soon be laying in a pool of your own sick.
When did I start to pull myself out?
I can't say an exact time here. At some point I fell asleep on Thursday during the day, getting a much needed nap. Luna loves that because she is the Dog Champion of napping. Luna also helps in that she forces me to go outside because she periodically wants and needs to go outside to relieve herself and bark at the people who dare to walk by the fence in front of our tiny complex where we live. Fuckers, how dare they walk across her domain without asking first. So having a furry four legged creature who loves you, sleeps next you, requires you to periodically quit thinking about your sorry, selfish self is a massive help.
What else is useful to know?
I'm no expert but realize it's going to stop at some point. It is not going to last forever, I promise. Do things when you are not down your personal rabbit hole or weasel warren or wherever it is that you go so you can remember them when you are there. They also might keep you from going so incredibly deep that you think that you can't crawl out. This where the tapping, meditation, etc. that I do on a mostly daily basis comes into play.
This is kind of the deal capper: Can I accept the fact that is most assuredly going to happen again?
This key for me. This crapola has been going on for so long for me, I absolutely know it is going to happen again; in fact, I went over to the rabbit's hole last night and sat next to it, then briefly stuck my head in and the chief rabbit told me to fuck off, they did not need my presence as I had just been wallowing around, fucking up their hole fairly recently and they were not finished repairing it yet.
I also got up and did something, I worked on my record lathes for a bit, then the sleepy meds kicked in and I went back to bed, got up in the AM and came to the coffee shop to write this mess.
Huh? If you look upwards at this missive (assuming you actually made it this far down), there is an ass load of semicolons up there. I got this from The SemiColon Project. Basically don't stop with a period, put a SemiColon in there and keep going. A lot of people are getting the SemiColon tattooed on them (I and the GF are going to see Mig at Electric 13 on Sunday to get them) You of course can draw them on yourself or even just read about the project.
Ok...that it for now. Remember to take care of yourselves. Seek professional help if and when you need to. Take a look at the Facebook page Depression: We Gotta Break Free. It is dedicated to cost free ways to fight the demons of depression and other maladies related to our brains and dark black soul's attempts to keep us miserable and un-useful to those around us.
Which brings up my last tool to find your way out of the hole
Help someone else. Do something kind for someone else. Think about those around you.Volunteer somewhere. Call a loved one. Say howdy to a complete stranger and maybe buy them a taco.
Gonna end this with a joke.
Guy walks into a convenience store. He buys a single service microwave meal, a single service Ice Cream, and one can of Beer.
The clerk says : "You must be single."
The guy looks back at her and says with a smirk : "Oh yeah, how did you figure that out?"
The clerk replies: "Because you are fucking ugly."
Until next time....
keep yourself safe, try to be productive, help someone else,do something nice for yourself (ice cream, Cheetos, and orange soda are particularly helpful to me).