This is a blog about depression. If you are easily offended or take offence to my very sarcastic humour, please do not read any further. Mental illness is not a joke; it is not something to point fun at and I fully understand that. BUT…when the going gets tough, sarcasm and humour is my defence and so I will be parading it around all over this blog.
If you need help, please get it. Whilst I hope this has a happy ending, I don’t know yet and given I’ve not been able to fix myself, I really don’t want others using this as a ‘How To Be Happy for Beginners v2.0’
It’s Tuesday and today is day 50 of the blog! Well I never. I didn’t know what this was going to be when I started it. Merely an outlet for the madness stuffed inside my small head (if there is any doubt on the size, some friends and I once used string to measure all our heads. No, we were not kids, this was a couple of years ago in a pub!). To be honest, I am still not entirely sure I know what all this is for but for the first time, I am sitting down daily and thinking through what’s going on in my head. In an egotistical way, I hope, deep down, someone will read this and think:
“Wow, Patient C was so brave and honest, I think I’ll get help too.”
Reality is, as long as it’s somewhat helpful to me, I’m going to carry on. If anyone has been reading this since day 1, no, I don’t offer refunds for your time and I won’t pay for the therapy you may now need as a result!
So, back to Tuesday. Alarms go off and there I lie listening to Radio 2. I’ve decided I can stay in bed until after the next traffic and news report. These are reliably every 30 minutes. But I am me, and this wouldn’t be interesting if I did what I planned. I fall back to sleep instead and wake up at 1000. Ok, I still have time to wash and get the bus to meet Friend KT and Baby WT. Do I though? No. Again, I’m not sure handing out points is worth it anymore, I am far too predictable. I potter round the flat, feed the cats and wonder what’s the absolute latest I can leave whilst still being on time. Turns out it’s one more episode of “Nothing to declare” (great program by the way!) where the predictable passenger who hasn’t declared the food in their luggage happens and they get a AUD250 fine – watch just one episode if you don’t believe me.
More dry shampoo is layered on top of two days of dry shampoo and out the door I go. There is progress though. My online order of M&S super stretchy jeans has arrived and oh boy, don’t knock them until you try them! So, not only have I made it outside, I’ve put on proper trousers. Tracksuits are great but they really should be reserved for gym visits only. It’s taxi time. I don’t have the stamina for tubes and the bus will make me late. It’s not really fair to keep someone waiting with a baby.
I arrive, a bit late but a lot less late than via bus and it’s time for a walk. This is progress. It’s a day off day care, I am dressed in proper trousers, I am outside and moving! We don’t walk far but still, it’s outside. To add to this, we then sit outside for lunch. Baby WT is pulling all kinds of cute faces at me, it was so worth leaving the house for this. I try giving Baby WT all the best ‘funny faces’ I can muster! He’s not impressed and to be honest, I don’t blame him. After lunch, we stroll along the Southbank. This is probably the most walking I’ve done since my admittance. I am starting to notice I may be getting a blister too. Darn it. We talk ‘Normal’ friend stuff and it’s great. I know I am not myself but it’s a better version of myself than a few weeks ago. Progress may not be tangible but moments like this make me realise I am moving in the right direction. It also goes to show how much I need to force myself to leave the flat every single day, momentum really does drive momentum.
Friend KT needs to head back shortly and asks if I want to go with her. Do I say yes even though I know going to the other end of London is too much for me? The words ‘sure, yes’ begin to form on my lips but then, something kicks in and I realise that’s too much. I say what I actually want. ‘No, sorry, I can’t’. Instead we have a quick drink nearby before heading back to the station. Well done Patient C, you said what you needed and guess what, Friend KT didn’t run a mile. Technically she couldn’t, her pram is way too big to run off with but still, minor victories and all that.
We head to the station and part ways in M&S. I don’t know why I even try to cover up the fact that the shopping list consists of yum yums, iced & spiced buns and wine gums but hey, I’ll pretend I am ‘Normal’ as we say bye. Walking round M&S I spot not 1 but 2 new delights. First up, chocolate milk with chocolate bits! Yes, at 450 calories per 250ml this stuff shouldn’t be legal but I am not one for counting my excessive consumption at the moment so in the basket you go. Next up, wait for it, this is a big one… RASPBERRY JAM YUM YUMS! No, these are not simply raspberry donuts my dear friends. These are donuts on speed! Oh wow. This may revolutionise my binge. Often, when cramming a basket filled with junk, I can feel very guilty and embarrassed. In recent weeks, I’ve taken to the art of not giving a shit. In some ways, this is positive. I am not thinking that every single other shopper is judging me. On the other hand, it makes my stock piling habit all the worse. I can’t remember if I wrote about it but the other day, whilst stock piling binge food, the cashier at M&S looked at the basket, nudged her colleague and they started laughing at me. No, this is not a nightmare. They were blatantly judging and laughing at me. To be fair, I don’t blame them, who needs 4 bags of wine gums, 4 bags of chocolate honey combe, 2 packs of yum yums, 2 packs of iced & spiced buns, 2 bags of milk buttons, a New York pastrami sandwich and 2 bottles of fizzy orange. Now, not all of these were consumed in one go I am hasten to add but they were evenly divided up over 4 days. That was a low point though. Two young, pretty cashiers laughing at me was not fun. I paid and made a hasty retreat with an extra 5p bag of shame.
Back to today, again, and I retreat to the taxi line. I need to get home asap. I was meant to be going via another station to collect an online order but I use the excuse of needing a reason to leave the house tomorrow to avoid doing it today. The very reason I am having things delivered to store is to try to force myself outside. If I were working, these would be piling up at my desk thanks to the very friendly post room staff who know me not only by name by my desk location too due to my Amazon shopping tendancy. Back home and straight into comfy’s. I tackle the raspberry yum yums first before moving onto Sudoku and then adult colouring. I stop 45 minutes later as my masseuse arrives. I mean really, is it any wonder I have debt? I don’t need to feel guilty about this one though, he’s offered me a 2 hour Thai yoga massage for free. If you’ve never had a Thai yoga massage, I highly recommend them. You are clothed whilst the masseuse manipulates your body into stretchy poses. It’s great. Maybe, just maybe, this can be the kick start back to more normal eating and walking I need. I tell him I am going to walk the 1 hr to the station tomorrow to collect the online order rather than take the 30-minute bus. Now I’ve said it out loud it feels more like a rule.
Once the two hours is up, my body feels thoroughly stretched. My mind also feels up to tackling the blog write ups. I need to explore if the blog write ups felt tough because I didn’t want to face up to the emotions on the missing days. Even now sat here at the study desk, I’ve written them in the wrong order and I’m delaying writing last Friday’s and the weekend. Why? Well, last Friday was awful. I was really low and I opened up a little about my plan in IPT. The weekend was tough due to some well meant, but hurtful, words from my mum. So, the conclusion? Yes, I’ve been actively avoiding the write ups so as to avoid facing those emotions. Looks like therapy may be working after all. Let’s see if this momentum will survive the night and see me voluntarily leaving the flat tomorrow.