:: solitude ::
original image (found here) is from kevindooley's flickr photostream.
i added the quotation, which i found here.
this week i've been working on a little theory about my depression, or maybe a theory about what it's going to take to climb out of it and stay out for good.
i sat down earlier this week and started a two-part list: enjoyments, hobbies, and coping mechanisms i relied on before i had a child; and enjoyments, hobbies, and coping mechanisms i rely on now. i also thought about how my days used to be structured versus how they're structured now.
and it hit me: i need solitude. i need it every single day. every single item on my "before i had a child" list was something i used to do alone. go to the gym (alone). read. write. take long daily walks. since childhood i've been someone who needs her me-time in order to be able to face the day.
i've always known i was an introvert. when i did that myers-briggs test in high school it was absolutely no surprise to me to find my first letter was an i and not an e. i mean look at me: i like to sew, to knit, to read. i love taking long walks. all of my most favorite hobbies are things you usually do alone. this has never meant that i don't enjoy social interaction or that i don't need it everyday, too. i do, on both counts. it has just always meant that social interaction drains my battery, and somewhat rapidly depending on the company, while solitude recharges me.
and living with a toddler is like 13 straight hours of social interaction. every single day.
i found the quote above here, and it made such perfect sense to me from where i stand right here, right now. when i'm depressed, yes, i feel lonely. i am not myself. i don't know how to find myself. i need to be around people, but not just any people: i need to be around people who know me. but being around people isn't going to be the solution, at least not for me. going out into the world every day may be a distraction, and it may be good for me in doses. but i think the way out of this is going to be by finding ways to be alone, quiet, thoughtful, and peaceful every single day. ways to bring back my solo walks when i can. ways to recharge. ways to encourage evan to let me recharge, maybe, and ways to get some time without him.
there's more to the theory, but this is my favorite part. it's the part that makes me feel hopeful.