Monday, October 24, 2011

IN NEED OF A WORTHY MID-LIFE CRISIS


By George, I think I have it all figured out! Now, all I have to do is figure out what to do with it...

I have given great thought to what I lovingly call my serotonin–norepinephrine–dopamine crisis aka The Big D (depression). Socrates would be so proud of me for leaving no stone unturned in my continuing crusade to examine my life. Yes, after close scrutiny, I'm quite sure my brain has always lacked something that others seem to have. I've always wondered why someone who is highly intelligent doesn't function at a level that reflects their intelligence while others who appear to be quite dense rise to the top like cream. Sure, the lack of support and guidance early in my life probably didn't help, but others who have been products of dysfunction have overcome great obstacles to become successful and happy. So why haven't I? Am I lazy? Am I simply unmotivated?

Anyone who knows me knows laziness isn't the culprit as reflected in my Wonder Woman status for much of my adult life. It always amused me whenever I heard, "Get Karen to do it. She can do anything!" Yes, Karen can do anything, but be successful and happy. My list of things I've started in life, yet never finished is so long it's mind boggling. That in itself would be a major cause for depression in most people. But unlike most people who have a fear of failure, I find failing to be a relatively easy thing to digest.

For me, it's succeeding that throws me in a tizzy. Maybe it's confusing how someone can be labeled as Wonder Woman, yet feel like a failure. Sure, I can do anything, but I become bored and distracted easily and never feel as if I'm challenged for very long. Everything I've done in life to this point only seems like menial tasks to get by, when I know I'm capable of so much more. Okay, so why didn't I choose something that I felt challenged me? Ahhhhh, there it is! That's where the fear of success rears its ugly head. That's where the face of self-destruction comes into focus. I've never found that one thing that feels like "home", my niche, that special place where I belong because I've always held myself back from exploring the possibilities by never allowing myself the luxury of completion or success. What an excellent way to punish ones self! And at this point I don't even know anymore why I feel punishment is necessary. The old demons appear to be dead, so is it just a lack of not knowing how to proceed or where to proceed from here? At this point is it habit more than anything else?

I've always felt like I'm treading around in some murky mud puddle under a dark cloud awaiting impending doom, but I learned to build a convincing facade early in life. I became the class clown, the risk-taker, the first to do everything, the organizer, the one who questioned whether the sky is really blue. I always needed the feeling of being on the edge to feel alive. I needed to push all the boundaries and test all the limits except my own. All sensation I gathered were from external sources and never from within. Now, that I've distanced myself from the edge I feel a void in my life. I'm lost and feel as if I'm slowly spiraling down. The murky mud puddle is becoming increasingly more difficult to navigate. I think living on the edge was how I self-medicated to replace the lack of serotonin–norepinephrine–dopamine I possessed. I think engaging in risky behaviors and unhealthy relationships was my way of keeping the adrenaline pumping. It was my way of feeling normal because I've never had a clue as to what normal really is. Even the bad boys who were initially oh so delicious become predictable and boring after awhile. Now, everything has become predictable and boring and now... once where my demons treaded is a silent overgrown path.

9 comments:

  1. karen: once again...soul of an artist. which means, really, that you don't see things the same way as "normal" people do. truly, this is a godsend. so what if you haven't achieved what you think is considered success by the sheeple.

    it's those sheeple that have made you feel less than worthy. lack of self worth is a burden that none of us need but, unfortunately, is hoist upon us by the ones who are supposed to love us the most (meaning parents).

    Yeah, I'll shut up now.

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  2. Oh shit, I didn't factor the sheeple into all of this. Thanks for reminding me! My new mantra- SOUL OF AN ARTIST, SOUL OF AN ARTIST, SOUL OF AN ARTIST...

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  3. and please don't ever shut up. Yeah, sheeple! I feel a new blog entry coming on.

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  4. By George I think youv'e got it....

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  5. Anonymous, by George, I wish you had left a name or a clue to your identity! Are you an animal, vegetable or mineral and are you bigger than a breadbox?

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  6. We are all victims of our upbringing and biochemistry. I think the question you should ponder is: what constitutes happiness and success?

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  7. Laoch, that's a great question and one that continues to baffle me.

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  8. Perhaps the "bad boys" and self-medication were a way of numbing the pain of the depression?

    As for the predictability and boredom, I suspect that everyone encounters this in their lives, but for different reasons. It could be a reminder to oneself to switch gears or take a new approach, or it could be a symptom of the depression.

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  9. Ahab, my bad boy days and self-medication are behind me now, but yes, they were definitely a way to numb the pain and make me feel alive all in one huge self-destructive brouhaha. Yes, it is time to switch gears and to take a new appoach. I think my self examination is supposed to be the catalyst that makes that happen.

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