Where am I now?

Well it’s been a while folks and I’m still here.

If you listen to my podcast you will know that over the new year things went south for me in a way I wasn’t expecting. This suck as I wanted to be doing more creative work but that made things even worse.

Depression is a multi-tentacled beast from beyond the darkness of space that lives in your mind and feeds on your fears and anxieties. Its also really exhausting. Pair that with so much of the ‘other’ stuff one needs to be doing to just keep on going, naturally something must give. For me it was my creativity. It’s not a happy trade-off but it’s one that I needed to do to keep sane.

I’m also thankful and know I’m lucky. I have access to medication, with thanks to the NHS, without making me bankrupt. I have support in work and a support network who help when I need it. I’ve also got access to the outside green spaces of the countryside. Lately the weather hasn’t been there for it but it’s something I can access. I have never believed the whole “if you go outside, you’ll be less depressed” that’s nonsense. It does mean however you get a bit of exercise and some fresh air. It’s not going to cure anything but it’s not going to kill you either. Well hopefully not anyway.

At the moment I’m working on a Novel. I still haven’t got a title, but the outline is done, and the first chapter is written. I’ve ‘borrowed’ my other half’s old manual typewriter. It’s frustrating as heck to use it but I’ve found it’s also a fantastic way for me to write. I need to think about every word I put down, I need to take my time in order to stop it getting all jammed up. Due to the fact it’s an old machine I also need to feel through the ribbon manually. The main reason I like it is because it takes me away from distractions.

Aside from the Novel and the Podcast, I’m also helping edit a friend’s blog called Soft Skills. Funnily enough it’s a job I enjoy. Mostly due to the fact its easier to critique something you didn’t write yourself. I’m enjoying the process as well and learning. Every day learning.

So that’s all for now. I am looking around for ideas of my next short stories. I will take anything and everything as a suggestion. Within reason!

Adieu for now my friends and I will be back. It’s a promise.

 

What happened?

So, I didn’t have much output over the last couple of weeks due to a family member being taken into hospital. It was stressful and distressing. I won’t go into details, but the individual is doing much better and the NHS truly continues to astound me. The staff and care they received were excellent.

 

The only thing that got me was the ward. So many people coming and going. There is the multi person ward which is the normal type of ward then the individual rooms which people walked past looking in like some ghoulish zoo. Its tragic that this is where so many people will spend their final days. It’s tragic and sad. Not something I wish to see but something I know is inevitable.

 

Death is not something we talk about much in western civilisation. I wish we did but its hard too. I think a lot of this is to do with the fact that loss is greater. People don’t have as many children and thanks to health care improvements there’s not as much childhood disease and deaths. This means that when a loss happens it feels like a piece of ice lodges in your heart.

 

Many years ago, I lost my mother. While we didn’t get along famously, she was still my mum. I won’t say I dealt with it all very well. Only now have I managed to come to terms with that loss and my own grief.

 

I would like to see improved palliative care for those who are about to cross into that great unknown but not at the detriment of care for others. It’s not a zero-sum game but it’s not a great sum either thanks to healthcare cuts and tighter budgets across the board.

 

I would like to see more conversation about death too and how it effects people. I don’t think its ghoulish and it’s a very sad part of life but it’s a sadness that needs to be faced not buried.

 

And finally, I want to say that all of you who have lost somebody, it’s ok. It’s ok to feel sad or angry or frustrated. It’s ok to want to laugh or cry. It’s ok to ask for help in dealing with it all and it’s ok to miss that person too. It’s ok.

Can’t Even

There’s been a lot going on lately. Work has ramped up and in some ways become difficult. We’ve also managed to some how get together a deposit so we’re looking at houses, thinking of moving and dealing with mortgage people and solicitors.

Mentally, emotionally and physically I’m exhausted.

One thing that’s been really horrible is the overacting to the smallest problem. Getting unjustifiably angry or upset at the smallest speed bump in the road of the life.

I’ve already looped in with my doctor (yay medication and the NHS) and also looping in with my counsellor.

Still it’s tough to try and focus. Being creative while hailing panic attacks is quite difficult and also frustrating. I want to write but the words aren’t coming.

Inspiration is fleeting.

I am feeling that we’re living in a situation of imbalance. We’re not going forward with anything because we’re in the process of buying a place. We’re our and about every weekend looking at properties which in itself is exhausting.

The flat is a mess too, were in the half packed place waiting for the call to come through for the financials and the property to be approved.

That’s the other problem of course. Everything is out of our hands. We have limited control over the situation and living in perpetual anticipation feeds into the gnawing anxiety.

The solution? Self care, self management, breathing, talking, taking the medication and exercise. My doctor has also told me in no uncertain terms to stop drinking. At least for six weeks.

So yeah, that’s what’s going on and it’s awful. I hate feeling like this and I feel like I’m falling apart.

Hopefully things will settle within the next six months but it’s going to be a hell of a ride.

The NHS Rocks

I posted a tweet about this a could of days ago. Anyway, my back was so sore that I finally made a decision to go to the doctor.

I’ve been given super strong anti inflammatories which now have eased pretty much all of the pain. Went to to doctor, she decided to run my bloods for some other stuff. While I was there I was offered my flu vaccine too (I got mine months ago because I’m not an idiot) and we did a bunch of other things which needed to be done as part of ongoing issues.

I got a prescription, not just for what I went in for but a bunch of other things too see above with ongoing issues.

Pop along to the chemist and get my prescription handed. Not once did I have to take out my wallet nor did I feel like the staff didn’t care.

Coming from Ireland, who based their healthcare model on the North American model, it’s freaking amazing. It was a cost to see a doctor, a cost for any drugs. If you needed anything extra you’d have to book another appointment with nurse to do bloods and anything else.

Then you have the drugs. Oh heck, depending on who your doctor and what mood they might be in , they could prescribe you a generic or a brand. Honestly being sick could easily bankrupt a person. I know that it happens. Some care is covered, like emergency services etc but it’s a joke that have a mental illness, for example, means lots of medication that means you work just to pay your medical bills.

Living and working in Scotland, I absolutely love to pay my tax towards the NHS. It’s an amazing service, people are actually healthy. People are not worried about being able to pay their bills or worry. They don’t just ignore the lumps or the weird cough or the pain. They get it checked out. They get things caught early. They get the treatment they need.

The staff and services are stretched but they deserve nothing but respect because the NHS rocks!

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