I always wanted to be a hermit. Some of my favorite folks from literature and TV lived in the wild, far from the craziness of society. I had this image in my head of being a "grown up", all scrawny and leathery from too much sun, wearing overalls and a flannel shirt as I foraged through the forest for mushrooms and wild berries. I imagined myself having a one room cabin in the woods, with a small garden and a smokehouse in back. I thought about how wonderful it would be to make my own pemmican and jerky, to wander the wild areas left in the world barefoot and wild. I would spend hours imagining lazy days spent fishing (cuz smoked fish is DA BOMB!), and learning the ways of the creatures that lived closest to me.
*sigh* I guess I never really grew out of that dream.
Funny thing, the depression and anxiety have made me a different type of hermit. Sometimes I get caught up in wondering which came first. Was I a child with a romantic dream that was turned into a nightmare by a chemical imbalance? Or was I always terribly fearful of people, and that was the child's way of making it okay?
I suppose it doesn't matter. I value practicality, and wondering about such things is hardly practical. I am what I am, and though understanding how I got this way is important to understanding myself, what I do with who and what I am is more important to my future.
Without my meds, I am most content alone here in my little bubble I have created at Barefoot Manor. I fuss in the gardens, watching carefully for the first leaves to open to the spring sun or carefully pulling mulch back and looking for the first spikes of green from my perennials. I fight with the Sprouts, trying to get Big Sprout to do her chores and dealing with Little Sprout's temper tantrums. I go to work, but the idle chatter that the girls indulge in seems so trivial. So I retreat.
Sometimes I think about going back on my meds. I think about how much easier life is when I am medicated. But then I think that life shouldn't be easy. We value things that are hard-won, and every small pleasure is a victory when you are fighting the demons of fear and sadness.
So I think I will continue on the way I am for a while. I have so many things to be grateful for. I have the dreams of my just-begun garden. I have a freezer full of good, local meat. I have a family that is healthy and wonderful and loving. What more do I need? Being a bit of a hermit may be unusual, but it is far from bad.