Inspiration struck when re-reading Margaret Attwood’s seminal book ‘On Writers and Writing’. If I ever write an unreliable memoir, a great working title would be ‘Defacer of Blank Pages’. I seem to spend a lot of time facing blankness.
Today I’ve finally acknowledged to myself that my mood is a bit more than just down. I write this as encouragement and in solidarity with those who know like me, that Olaf isn’t the only black dog in my life.
Depression is insidious. Usually it hits me like a truck. This time we have wrestled so many times in recent months that I have lost count. Mostly, I’ve got up and fought another day. Now it’s not so straight forward. I am not speaking much if at all out loud; sleeping too much; lethargic. Have I got up? Up where?
Inside there’s nothing much happening. My brain of a thousand ideas before breakfast and the energy to match is happiest asleep with watching rubbish TV as a close and enthralling second. Even though I know I’m know I’m
ill, I find it hard to recognise this manifestation of myself when she comes to stay.
Over the years I’ve learnt there’s nothing to be gained and a lot to be lost if I beat myself up when I feel like this. At the moment there’s no chance of that as my inner dialogue is AWOL.
I’m doing my best to go with the lack of flow. I may become a mime artist or work only through interpretative dance. Good sign – sense of humour on tonal but not mute.
Gentleness is the first treatment. Change of painkillers and honesty. Authenticity is an important part of emotional good enough living. Trust me on that. For now at least.