Been a tough time on occasions recently but gradually getting through it. Just upped my medication a bit which tends to work for me. There has been some criticism in the media and from prominent celebrities recently over the use of medication to treat anxiety/depression but I don’t think any two people are quite the same. I was taking a much larger dose a few years ago, and again that worked for me at that particular time. Nevertheless, just now and again, an extra dose during moments in the day can take the edge off whatever I’m feeling. Sometimes it is hard to tell if it is the condition of depression or whether it is merely the quite normal thing of someone feeling a bit down. The key point at these moments is “Find what works for me”.
Signs that I’m not good are both specific and vague:
irritation at minor things;
taking decisions that you know are not the right ones but that are somehow easier to take;
worrying loads about work, alternated with not caring at all about work (that’s a tricky situation – flipping between anxiety and depression);
thinking I need to lose weight but at the same time wanting chocolate (or occasionally junk food), which if I succumb makes me feel even worse than before!;
difficulty sleeping and/or weird dreams, sometimes apparently meaningless;
desire to listen to music that I haven’t heard for ages, usually from my teens or young adulthood;
don’t want to talk to anyone – it is often better just to leave me alone (because no-one can help, I might upset them and they might tell me something that I don’t want to hear), which is a problem if I have a work meeting – thankfully this situation only happens rarely;
I go very quiet on Facebook (!) and general communication. I tend to go into myself for a while and have long periods of deep thought. Often I can sit and read for half an hour or listen to music. Motown appears to work – there is one artist that I avoid like the plague, and that is Simon and Garfunkel. Not that I dislike them, in fact they are great when I’m feeling, er, groovy, but if I’m already miserable, they accentuate the mood.
Of course, I can go walking. This might not work for everyone but exercise cannot be anything but good if you can manage it. And on Sunday I took the weekly opportunity to find a route with plenty of decent climbs – I prefer the roads normally – and without any great drama I notched up almost exactly 20 miles, which should now be the norm for a once-a-week distance, even as the days get shorter. In fact, chances are that the walks will get longer rather than shorter with less threat from the heat.
If you are a trifle concerned at the tone of the first part of this post, then don’t be. It is very unusual if I talk or write about this topic at the time of feeling less chipper. So I am okay. All demands are quite reasonable in isolation but it is difficult when they all come at once. I could do with a hug here and there but then who couldn’t?
Thinking about walking – I am absolutely loving it and felt like the world was lifted from my shoulders. Yes, 20 miles, and it is comforting to find it becoming slightly easier each time. I’ll soon be ready to get to more serious distances – anything of 25 or more miles is a decent walk by virtually anyone’s standards, certainly mine. Feeling groovy? Yeah…