I like to paint pictures. Maybe I'm an artist. But this past summer my mind went blank. I couldn't put my brush to the canvas because I was trapped in a state of depression. . I'm convinced that it's a Parkinsons thing. Like, I have Parkinsons?, How depressing is that? So I went into a frump. On top of that I had sprained my ankle, I'm not exactly sure how, [jumping?] that kept me in the house all day. I went to the foot doctor to make sure that I hadn't broken anything. The x ray was fine. He wrapped it in an Ace Bandage and told me to stay off of my ankle. O.K. I went to my chair. For a month. Every morning I was sniveling about how doomed I was. I started shaking more. I read books about Parkinsons. About depression. Anxiety. I was becoming an expert on being a mess. But I was also getting lazy. I needed to do something to keep myself occupied.
My ever so patient wife noticed that I was turning into the equivalent of a flower pot and suggested that I start seeing a therapist. O.K. We [meaning she] made an appointment. We went to meet her. She was a she. I was a total mess. I went into my weeping thing and she agreed to take me on as a client. During my first visit she asked me what I do during the day. I probed my memory. "Dishes. I do the dishes first thing in the morning to kick start my day. Cleaning. Showering. Reading. Feed the cat. I've had days where I have a song running thru my head all day, over and over. I never quite know what the words are. Maybe THATs a Parkinsons thing..." I was fidgiting. And babbling. She looked at my body language and jotted down a note. I noted her writing down the note and made a note to myself to look her right in the eye while I was talking to her so she wouldn't make a note about that.
She said "But what do you DO?''
"I used to paint pictures but I seem to have something like writers block. I've got seven canvasses sitting in the closet. They're just sitting there. .." I could feel The Weep coming on. She jotted down a nother note. Then she said "Why don't you take out your easel and set it up and put one of those canvasses on it and DO a painting?''
I looked at her. She said it in a way that it made perfect sense. And the way she said it sounded like some sort of professional command. I looked at her bookshelf. It was filled with things that made perfect sense and filled with little commands. All of a sudden I was consumed with the passion to prove that I could do something. Before I left I made a pledge to do a painting.
The next day, first thing after I did the dishes, I went to my closet and took out a canvas.
I wanted to do a painting that reflected a cheerful mood. While I was painting I noticed that the day was moving along faster. My hands were busy. I didn't seem to be as preoccupied with thoughts of doom. My hands were doing what they were supposed to do. Creating a picture. I was finished with the picture before I had to take My Third Pill of The Day. I stood back and looked at the finished painting. OMG. The person in my painting looked like my shrink. Did I need to jot down a note over that? I got out my trusty cell phone and took a picture of the painting. I spent the rest of the day looking at the painting. I think that I am my best fan.
On my following visit to see my therapist I proudly told her that I had indeed painted a picture. I told her that I took a cellphone picture. She asked me to show it to her.
"Look. Doesn't she look a little like you? Maybe it's the hair". She looked at the picture. "that's a nice painting". She didn't write herself a little note.
Moral of The Story: Do Something. It'll make your shrink happy.