: a state or position that is in the middle between two other things : a middle position
Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 13 Dec. 2015.
Transitions are excruciating. Sitting. Waiting. Seemingly stuck in the current place and longing for the next. Dr. McEnroe said, at our visit last week, that the antidepressant has begun to work. It’s difficult for me to see, being that I’m currently mired in the muck. He upped the Brintellix from 10 mg to 15 mg for a week, and then on to 20 mg, which begins this evening.
“You want a remarkable transformation,” he said.
“I do. It doesn’t seem right that it should be as slow-going climbing out of the pit as it was climbing in, given the meds are supposed to give me a bit of a push,” I answered. “Then again, I had a bit of a push going in, given my family.”
I suspect he saw my smartassity as a hopeful sign.
Besides being in between depressed and not depressed (or less depressed), there are larger transitions taking place. In fact, I suspect these transitions are, in part, the cause of the depressive episode. There’s the much-desired transition between practicing law and not practicing law. Leaving the suffocating profession behind for (hopefully) a more creative life. And then there is the transition between my mother being alive and not being alive.
My mother was in the hospital for the third time this year (or maybe it was the fourth, I lose count) from the Tuesday before Thanksgiving until the Tuesday following Thanksgiving. She received IV antibiotics (Vancomycin) for MRSA, a staph infection resistant to most antibiotics. The following Friday, three days after she was released back to her assisted living, she was back in the hospital. This time, they kept her only two nights for “observation” and more antibiotics, and she was back at her assisted living, and her cat, by Sunday evening. With any luck, mom will steer clear of the hospital through Christmas. An “in-between” Christmas that my mom and I will spend at my ex-sister-in-law’s (ironically, the ex-sister-in-law who was the subject of my sister’s verbal vomit at Thanksgiving), while my sister spends hers in Dallas with her daughters and grandchild.
In-between. I don’t like this place. These half-Christmases. This half-life. Wanting to move out of this place and into the next phase of my life. It’s a difficult thing to acknowledge. That I find this in-between place, caused in part by my obligations to my mother, undesirable. A daughter is supposed to embrace this remaining time. Cherish every moment. But, in truth, I feel ambivalent. Each time she’s admitted to the hospital with a new infection, I brace myself. Is this it? Is this the one? And when it’s not, I feel relief. And also, anxiety. How long will this go on? How many more years of my life will I exist in this state of suspension? When do I get to start making my own Christmases? I know when she’s gone, I’ll look back on this ambivalence with horror. I’ll realize fully that these in-between Christmases are “my Christmases.”
And I’ll wish I had just a few more years of “in-between.”