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I’ve kept the depression under control for about four and a half years now with only a few low spots along the way which, as lows go, weren’t too bad. The past couple of weeks, however, I’ve been a bit … what’s the word?

… Ah! …


This serotonin starved brain of mine is a tricky bastard. Lately, I’ve been taking my morning coffee with a heaping helping of panic attack. It’s caused by a combination of new stressors: too little sleep, too much work, a handful of co-workers who should probably be killed.

I can’t do anything about the lack of sleep. It’s just the circumstances of this particular season in my life. My workload hasn’t changed much, but I’m often acutely aware of the fact that I’ve got fifteen things to do, but can’t remember a damn one of them. And even though I can buy a gun faster than a happy meal, spree killing seems like a lot of work.

It doesn’t take much to make me use a brown paper sack as a breathing apparatus. Passive aggressive emails about not doing things I didn’t know needed to be done. Management decisions that make me want to put a bag over my head so that when it explodes, the gore doesn’t fuck up the furniture. And let’s not forget the laptop that gets handed to me in pieces because “the screws fell out.” Oh, there’re some loose screws, alright.

I play it cool. I’ve had a lifetime’s worth of practice. Don’t make eye contact. Pretend I’m immersed in something incredibly important. Act distracted to suggest it’s something else getting on my last goddamn nerve. Short, curt answers. And if it’s really bad, I take off my glasses and hold the bridge of my nose as though trying to pinch off an aneurysm. All so I don’t do a profanity-laced combat roll through the window or stab someone in the temple with a ballpoint pen.

Sometimes, I just need to be alone with my thoughts. To fantasize about being the sole survivor of a zombie apocalypse or moving into the jungle for a hermetical and rather apelike life, nude and unapologetic. Will my health insurance cover that? The jungle, not the apocalypse, I mean.

But don’t worry! As of yesterday, I have two new ingredients for my daily cocktail of meds.

One of them is “habit forming” so you know it’s good!




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Black Leopard, Red Wolf

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