Saturday, November 18, 2006

The Other Diagnosis

More than any other word on earth, the word I hate the most right now is "trouper." I despise the very concept, the mere idea that it's a even good thing to be. I loathe the pressure it puts on us to be so goddamn "brave," to be cheerful and upbeat and have a "positive attitude;" and, above all, to "fight."

I'm not a trouper. I'm not brave, I'm not upbeat, I'm not a fighter. I spend an average of 2.75 hours every day crying. I cry so hard it sounds like I'm strangling, or drowning. I went to talk to a therapist, and she says I'm suffering from adjustment disorder and bereavement. Bereavement for my own lost self, the loss of the delicious life that I had worked so hard to create: the freedom, the independence, the strength, the vitality, the lust, the competence, the companionship, the dignity. All gone now . I hate what I've become. I hate what my life has turned into.

And the only choices I seem to have are: suck it up and be a "trouper"; or bury my face in my pillow and sob.

I say fuck the whole trouper business. Let them put this on my gravestone: "Her attitude stunk like day-old fecal matter, and we were afraid she would never ever ever EVER shut up with all that damn crying and whining. Praise Eternity!"

9 Comments:

Anonymous Ron Sullivan said...

I'm thinking "trouper" (Oh thank you for spelling it right!) and "brave" are the obverse of the Pink Ribbon/ Pink Teddybear shit.

Um, um... (chirpily) Hope you're hydratring, what with all that crying.

12:21 AM  
Blogger Ya Looblue said...

::offers my shoulder::

7:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You cry all you want to!!!!!

10:59 AM  
Blogger amazonmidwife said...

Besides the hydration, I would suggest the cold care tissues (or cloth hankies) to avoid chapping and a moisturizer under the eyes. (therapist recommended, that is.)

11:59 AM  
Anonymous Sara said...

Yes, thank you for clearing up the orthography. I always thought we were supposed to be "troopers," brave little soldiers marching stoically off to our doom, never flinching in the face of adversity. Now I get it! We're supposed to be actors! People just like it when we act as though we're happy.

Thank you so much for the elucidation. I've been hearing this wrong my whole life.

I hope you have plenty of tea.

4:29 PM  
Anonymous Kimberly said...

In my experience as the wife of a two-time cancer survivor, no one gets through this without regular bouts of sobbing. Not even the perkiest trouper stays upbeat late at night when the show is over and everyone has gone home.

Cry all you need to. (That's not at all about permission, just understanding.)

3:24 PM  
Blogger Corley said...

The same Jennifer I mentioned in earlier comments used to set aside a part of every day to cry. She said that embracing it for a short time everyday made it crop up less in the times she was trying to enjoy.

3:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Dr. Leda,
I have so thoroughly enjoyed your columns about roses and gardening. You have made me laugh when I was depressed.

I would really like to help you. Is the paypal information mentioned on http://finwake.blogspot.com/ correct? I got this information on GardenWeb.

I will be praying for you.

1:21 PM  
Blogger BJC said...

Have you tried ginger for the nausea? You can get capsules or buy tea. Hope this helps. It may help with the bad tastes too.

The house is really lovely. I hope something works out.

My best wishes for a total and speedy recovery!

3:42 PM  

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