Number 296.31


We are often identified by numbers in society these days.  Right now, my number is 296.31.
The 296 indicates Major Depressive Episode.
The .3 specifies that the depression is Recurrent, meaning more than one episode.
The 1 notes that it is Mild severity.  The 1 means that I meet five or six of the criteria for a Major Depressive Episode:
* Depressed mood most of the day, nearly every day, either reported by self or observed by others.
* Diminished interest in pleasure or activities.  (Chocolate? Gross, no. Sorry, Abe the Vampire Hunter, you’re not getting read tonight.)
* Insomnia (no sleep) or hypersomnia (too much sleep)
* Fatigue or loss of energy.
* Feelings of worthlessness or excessive, inappropriate guilt (everything is my fault)
* Diminished ability to think or concentrate, indecisiveness, forgetfulness.
These are my six criteria.
Number 1 also indicates that I can still function day-to-day, but it takes a substantial effort.  Forcing myself out of bed.  Then I don’t want to leave the house.  Then I don’t want to leave work.  Then I am nervous about Writer’s Group.  Then I don’t want to leave Writer’s Group.  Irritable.  Do I really have to shower today?  Ugh.  Why can’t I just curl up in a blanket and read or journal? 
Because the weight of the world rests on my shoulders.  There’s bills to pay and laundry to do and people to call and gripe at about paying medical insurance that apparently is not covering my procedures (Well, if you are not going to use my $7,000 I pay per year to pay for the procedure, then I’d like my $7,000 back please).  There’s a book to write and books to read.  My son can’t survive on sandwiches or nachos every night.  There’s a Jeep in the shop that will need to be picked up.  The hair does need to be combed and the face needs to be washed.  *Sigh*

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