Are You An Upper or Downer?

04 Upper or Downer

The latest instalment of, ‘My Therapist Gave Me An Assignment: Write about Your Ex’

I’m not going to lie. A large portion of why I decided to check myself in and go back to therapy was for the prescription pills. Now before you cast your judgements, stones, preconceived notions, and whatever else, my reasoning is simple. I either feel nothing or everything. It’s pretty complicated to describe, but take the other week as an example. I had been in a studio working on my next series of screen prints and, if you’re unfamiliar with the logistics of screen printing, let me catch you up to speed. Screen printing is great. However, it is 80% preparation, 10% cleaning, and 10% actual printing/making. This means a lot of down time. Too much down time. Time in which you’re waiting for your screen to dry, prepping your screen to be exposed or printed, and cleaning up after yourself every step of the way. I listen to music while all of this is being done, but it doesn’t help me to tune out my thoughts of: “How long will this last?” “The New York Times mentioned something about cats helping with depression– I need a cat.” “I should consider killing myself when it’s most convenient for everyone else, that way everyone can be present for the funeral.” “Happiness is fickle.”

Now, when I actually get to printing and see the work being done I feel a little better and then I think to myself as Destiny’s Child’s Survivor album plays as my soundtrack: “You’re so lucky to have a creative outlet to channel all of this bullshit somewhere.” “You’re a keeper.” “Depression isn’t all bad, right?” I’m having trouble with feeling so many things so sporadically. I feel like I’m constantly bouncing from high to low and know that my emotions can be triggered at any moment. It has gone so far as me sensing my anxiety flaring up and knowing that once I excuse myself from the world and I am within the privacy of my own home, it’ll rage.



Words and images by Megan Tatem 

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