I always try to keep up with Jenny Lawson’s work. I’m a longtime fan and she was the first person to make me feel like there were others out there as bad off as myself. Then she starting publishing my exact thoughts and emotions and I figured out she was somehow reading my mind and writing about it. That was freaky. She even lives in the next state over. To people who can’t leave their house, that’s practically next door.
It makes me a little bitter her pain brings her income and my pain usually keeps me from income, but if it had to be someone, I’m glad its her. She really gets it. I’ve learned to live with it because she gave me hope. I thought, holy crap if she’s getting help and it’s working, maybe I can get help one day too.
The job I left a couple of months ago was the first one to provide me with insurance. I opted out of psych because I needed every penny and was in the middle of a good mood when I selected the options. I thought I could change it later if I actually thought I’d be brave enough to see a therapist. I had no idea the rules about changes were so complicated.
Since depression is a conniving bitch, it saved its worst for right after the deadline each year. I don’t think I would have gone even if I had selected it. That is the main reason I didn’t do it. I didn’t want to waste money on something I knew I would never go through with.
Bloggess made me view help in a different way. When she wrote about hers, I didn’t see a scary mind doctor waiting to strap me in a chair and electrocute me. Hers seemed almost like a friend. Sure, a friend you have to pay, but if you keep nitpicking the fine print you’re never going to get anywhere.
Recently I saw she was trying ketamine. She uploaded a video from the beginning of a session. It was beautiful and I was sober. I wish I could have seen it through her eyes instead of her phone. She was in a rich person place, it had a big flat screen with ocean scenes on it, and a projector casting wavy water light all over. Then they shot her up with ketamine. You can find it on her Instagram if you don’t believe me.
Could I ever afford that in a million years? Hell no. If I could afford it, would I be brave enough to go? That’s hilarious, of course not. But if it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t even know that option existed.
Now I can tell myself “Hey, good treatments exist. Maybe one day there will be an at-home version.” Or maybe I can Google how to buy ketamine on the street.
In my poorly worded, communication challenged way, I’m just trying to say, when you feel like you’re a freak of nature and all alone in the world, seeing someone else having the exact same thoughts and challenges with their brain as you are, makes everything seem less hopeless. It confirms ‘this is real.’ It’s a thing that happens to people.
The fact she is out there, still alive and getting through that shit, means I can look at my life and think maybe I can get through this if I just sit tight a little longer. Is that as helpful as tripping on ketamine? I can almost guarantee it’s not. But it’s what I have and it’s better than nothing because I’ve had that too.
My Bestie, she kept us going with phone cards until long distance calls were no longer an issue. She came back for holidays and summers, and that’s how I was adopted into her family. I remember what it was like before she came along. Sometimes you have to wall off the dark past and force yourself to keep looking forward.
I have a similar feeling about Jenny Lawson. Sure I’ll never meet or speak to her in real life. Sure, she doesn’t really know I exist or read my mind. But I remember what it was like before I knew I wasn’t the only person this bad off. It didn’t fix me. It didn’t cure my depression or ease my anxiety, but one of those black marks marring my soul was cleaned off by her words. It was an improvement and in a world where nothing will ever be perfect, we have to take every little improvement we can claw out of life.
Since I started writing this blog, I have tried to be careful not to steal any of her words. I didn’t want to end up plagiarizing someone, but especially not the main person out there screaming at the world “Hey! See us over here? All these broken ass people? We need some fucking help please!”
Have you ever had a phrase you say a lot because you thought you made it up? As an adult have you gone back to watch something from your childhood and realized you aren’t witty you’re just a copycat? I do that more often than I care to admit. So if I do that here, all I can say is I’m sorry and didn’t mean to. And that I’m fairly certain no real person is going to see any of these posts so it won’t matter anyway.
I guess that’s all I wanted to say. I feel like I at least owe a basic thank you to the woman, and I don’t feel like trying to track down an email for her. I’m sure she has a million fan letters she’s sick of by now anyway.
I’ve never thought about it from that angle before. People like us don’t like talking to other people. It’s too difficult for us and makes our heads hurt. Yet she has put herself in a position where millions of people now want to talk to her. My respect for her just went through the roof. As did my fear for her well-being, but she can probably afford great security so I’m sure it’s fine.