A Glimpse Insidebyblackdove55©
"DAMMIT SAM! SUCK IT UP!" Janet screamed. She was tired of the "poor Sam" pity party.
"You don't understand."
"MAKE ME UNDERSTAND!
"I have to figure out how!"
"FUCK YOU!" Janet slammed the door as she left Sam's place. Sam remained in fetal position on the couch. He cried silently. He wished he were different. He wished he did not suffer from depression. But he did. His medication worked pretty well, but hadn't been effective over the last month or so. And it showed.
Sam cried a million tears. Then a few million more followed. No one was there to hear his whimpers and his prayers for relief. And the worst part, no one understood what it was like.
Twenty minutes passed and Sam finally reached for the phone.
"Dr. Smart's office. How may I help you?"
"Hello Helen. This is Sam Shuffield. Is Dr. Smart available?"
"Sure. Hold on." The receptionist maintained her professionalism even though she heard the sobs in the background and the misery in Sam's voice.
"This is Dr. Smart."
"Hey Dr. Smart. This is Sam Shuffield."
"How are you feeling Sam?"
"Not good. Not good at all."
"Come to the office. I am free all morning."
"OK." Sam put on a T-shirt and jeans. He slowly trudged to his car with his head down. He hoped Dr. Smart could help him or at least understand him.
Thirty minutes later, Sam had stopped crying and was able to walk without looking at the ground. Dr. Smart wrote a new prescription. Sam reflected on the session and concluded that he would take Dr. Smart's advice. He would sit down and clearly explain to Janet what was going on with him and what it was like to suffer from this illness. Sam called Janet when he returned home.
"What do you want, Sam?"
"Hello Janet. We need to talk."
"We can talk over the phone."
"I would rather see you face to face."
"Have you moved off the couch yet?"
"Yes. I saw Dr. Smart."
"Good. At least you're doing something. I'll be there in fifteen minutes." Janet hung up abruptly. She didn't understand what had gotten into Sam. What was wrong with him? He was fine six months ago when we met. Now, he doesn't want to do anything. He just lays around and cries. I don't have patience for sorry ass men who are looking for sympathy. And he was having a pity party marathon.
"Thanks for coming, Janet."
"Mm hmm," was her reply.
"Please sit down." She sat in the love seat that was farthest away from Sam.
"Janet, I apologize for my behavior over the last few weeks. I've been in the midst of a depressive episode."
"A depressive episode. I suffer from depression. It started when I was eleven years old and I started taking medication for it when I was fourteen."
"MEDS?!!" Janet quizzically responded.
"Yes, meds. They usually help tremendously. But sometimes, they stop working and I need to get them adjusted." Janet leaned forward and listened closely to Sam.
"Sam, describe what you go through to me." The compassionate, loving Janet was back now.
"It's a heavy unexplainable sadness. Everything could be going great in my life. Good relationship, good job, money in the bank and healthy. But I still feel like my existence is meaningless. It takes incredible effort to even smile. It's like a cancer that won't go away. It might go into remission for a while, but eventually it is going to come back."
"Is there a cure?" she asked hopefully. But Sam's facial expression answered her question. He looked at the floor.
"Not yet. There are many different treatments and theories about what may cause it, but no known true cure." Janet just stared at Sam. A single tear ran down her cheek.
"What can you do to make it better?"
"Endorphins from running help a lot. Eating healthy and getting enough rest are good strategies too. Janet, I know this is hard to understand and deal with. As much as it kills me to think it, if you can't handle all of my stuff, there will be no hard feelings if you want to end our relationship." Janet gave Sam a tight hug and held him for a long time. She kissed his cheek.
"Sam, you are an amazing man. I knew that the day I met you. I am so thankful that you trusted me enough to share such a personal part of you with me."
"Does this mean we still have a future together?" Sam asked. Janet lowered her eyes and was quiet for a long time.
"I don't know Sam. I just don't know." With more tears running down her face, she left the apartment.
Sam was devastated. He thought the worst even though Janet did not say it was over definitively. He sat on the couch and stared at the blank TV screen for an hour. He finally got up and went to bed without eating.
The next week was torture. He had not seen or heard from Janet since their last conversation. He had left voicemails and sent e-mails with no response. He knew it was time to move on. When he got home, there was a letter taped to his door. He recognized the handwriting as Janet's. He rushed inside to see what it said.
I apologize for not being in contact for the last week. Many thoughts and feelings surfaced after our last conversation. I needed time alone to process them.
First of all, I want you to know that I meant everything I said last week: good and bad. I do think you are an amazing man, but I also believe you need to do more to help yourself. Your positives outweigh your negatives overall, but not by much.
Sam, you know that I am bisexual and my last relationship before you was with a woman. After our discussion, I realized that I needed to be with a woman. I respect and appreciate how honest and forthright you were with me. But you also made me see that men are at once so simple and extremely complex. I will never feel secure in our relationship. I don't know if I am going to come home to strong, medicated Sam or depressed Sam. This is an example of the male complexity, which frankly, I do not have the patience to deal with.
So, no there will not be a future for us. Please delete my number and stop e-mailing me. I care about you Sam and I want you to get better. But I cannot be weighed down by your emotional baggage and issues. I wish you all the best!
Sam was furious and relieved. Furious because his fragile ego was bruised, but relieved that Janet discovered where she would be the happiest. It was nothing new, but Sam was alone. Maybe one day, he would find someone who could truly love all of him.