‘To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.’
– Oscar Wilde
I’m back! It’s been quite some time since I last posted and I’m not entirely sure why. I’ve thrown myself in to giving the whole book writing thing a go and so far so good. It’s been a nice little escape, crafting characters and their worlds, weaving plot arcs and twists in to their lives. Yet whenever I’ve turned my attention to this blog over the last few weeks, I’ve found myself unable to concentrate long enough to create a vaguely engaging, structured piece, despite having plenty to write about. Usually I find that my writing will ebb and flow with my moods – on low days I tend to write a few non-coherent sentences in my personal diary, if at all. Then, on better days, I find myself writing this blog. Yet the short hiatus by no means signifies I’ve been low since my last post. So regardless of the pretentious connotation, I will simply call it writers block.
So, meandering on, a few things have changed in the past 2 months. Being medication-free, unfortunately, didn’t last too long. I knew the black dog would creep back up on me, and I knew exactly when it would happen. Not because I’m that highly in-tune with my inner being, honestly I’m wading on through with no idea of what the hell’s going on, but because it was the time that I not only came back from holiday, but rejoined full-time work. It was a trigger. I knew it would be, but I had no idea quite how hard it would hit me. Depression terrifies me and I didn’t want to go back there. I’d been doing so well, fighting so hard to feel alive. And yet the knot, that grip, started to slowly consume me once again. So we tried something new; Fluoextine, aka Prozac. A low dose, just to keep my head above water. I’ve been taking it for a solid few weeks now with no ill-effect. But of course, Bipolar, so the mood stabilizers are on standby, but so far have been completely unrequired. Rad!
I also had my brain MRI a couple of weeks ago. It was an experience to say the least. The night before I desperately scrabbled to get the tongue-web piercing out that had been stuck in my mouth for the last 10 years. I had horrific visions of being whipped in to the magnet by my tongue and so eventually, frantically, removed it with a pliers. You know that feeling when you finally manage to get a stuck bit of food out of your teeth that’s been lodged in there all day? Imagine getting it out after 10 YEARS. Oh the relief. So, off to the hospital I went. As I was sat in the waiting room with my newly metal-free mouth, the noises coming for the MRI room where somewhat daunting to say the least. A dear old lady finally got wheeled out from the room and whispered ‘Good luck’ as she passed me on her trolley. Oh thank you, that’s not anxiety-inducing whatsoever dear old lady.. My turn! Now I’m not claustrophobic in any which way, but by christ it was a small space to lay in. I had some weird box type thing on my head and they put earplugs in, which fell out. It was loud. It’s okay though, I thought, I’ll just shut my eyes and enjoy being able to lie down for half an hour without a 6 year old pestering me to play Poopy Head or something. But of course, my face itched. Why does everything itch when you’re not allowed to move? What kind of sick psychological game is that? Why did I need to cough all of a sudden? Nonetheless, I held it together and they successfully took photos of my brain. Now it’s just a waiting game for the results.
There’s finally been some progress on the therapy front. After a meeting with a few different therapists they’ve decided to go ahead with the CBT followed by a round of helping deal with my self-esteem issues. I’m still a little skeptical yet open to at least giving it a try. Generally, I’m pretty good, I’m feeling balanced. I’m still awful at running, but I’m still running. I’m still practising yoga, and I’m feeling results. I’ve found that 5.30am on the beach with the dogs is my favourite place to be. It’s still, the sun is rising and the sounds of the waves are amplified by the morning calm. The drive down there is full of wildlife – foxes, badgers, rabbits. My daughters sea glass and pebble collection is growing tenfold as the summer progresses. She’s found a love for body boarding and being in the sea. We’ve found a perfect quiet spot for evening walks with the dogs in a beautiful woodland. We’re eating way too much pizza, laughing at the little things and making up ridiculous games to play. I no longer dread the mornings and the long day which follows, I embrace them. I think, I’m no longer existing. I’m living.