I am back in the French Alps, and Lac Montriond is one of my happy places in the world. I have been few times now and it is a short bus ride away from where I usually stay. It is glorious. This picture was possibly taken about 4 years ago, and doesn’t do it justice.
Yesterday, I visited it again. And if it were possible, the scene that greeted me was even more spectacular… it was the first time I had seen it without snow and it was GLORIOUS.
My photos do not do it justice… but my eyes did.
It made me think, that sometimes we think things can never get better/ be better… and yesterday, I saw for myself, that sometimes things can get better even when they are already pretty amazing.
Thanks for listening.
Yesterday’s blogging was really helpful for me. Seeing things as they really are sometimes can be a helpful starting point for change.
If depression is an illness, then illnesses are treatable. There is medicine for illness and I know what that medicine is. So in the same way if I had a sore arm, I would know what will help and what would make it worse… I can do that with this period of low mood.
And that in and of itself makes things better. So here is my prescription thus far:
- accept the things I cannot currently change
- change the things I cannot currently accept
- go to bed at regular times
- eat food… and not just rubbish
- go out for a walk every day
- get sun on my face
- make the bed each day
- be kind to myself- don’t berate myself- it doesn’t help
- self-soothe using the different senses
- focus on breathing
- ask for help
and even though all of that feels too much, don’t give in to the temptation to do nothing and isolate.
I need to avoid:
- situations I find depressing (e.g. visiting my neighbour in the care home)
- only eating rubbish
- in fact, doing all the opposite of the above list!
THIS TOO SHALL PASS… it won’t last for ever.
breathing… the very essence of life… without it we can’t survive. Instinctual. Natural even? Something we take for granted? Something we are usually not aware of?
But sometimes, it’s the only thing we can manage, and it’s the only thing we need to manage.
I have been finding things quite difficult since the start of the year- and to be honest, I’m not entirely sure what I am about to list is the full reason for my melancholy- but I’m sure it hasn’t helped.
- A friend’s daughter committed suicide in January- though not personally affected by her loss, the impact on my mental health and ability to keep myself safe has been, and still is huge.
- Another person I know has started treatment for anorexia. Her pictures and stories on Facebook have been hugely triggering for me- I know I need to block them- but like a moth to a light bulb I’m drawn to them…
- My elderly neighbour with Alzheimers has been put in to a care home against her will. I have visited her every day for nearly 10 years- she is now gone. I’ve been to the care home to see her and it is just awful. I came out of there on Saturday and just wept- wept for her, and wept for myself, as I see before me my fear of what might happen to me…
- School/Work has been awful (and still is) At times really unpleasant. I’ve felt betrayed by people I thought were friends and been stabbed in the back by parents whom I have gone above and beyond the call of duty in helping… I’ve felt rejected and abandoned and have hurtled in to fear of bankruptcy and losing my house… I don’t feel positive enough to stem the negative tide… I can only see the ongoing trajectory as downward…
- I am working so hard (some things that I wish I wasn’t having to work at), so I live with the constant tension of not actually doing a good enough job at any of what I am having to do…
- My studies (my treat) is being totally neglected
- I am still trying to adapt to the new arrangements I have/ need to have with close buddies who now have children
- I am on count down to having to stop with my psychiatrist due to re-structuring in the Trust. I have seen him for 12 years- never a good time to stop, but it really doesn’t feel like the right time to stop either
- Plus, a couple of other things that I choose not to blog about…
Actually as I write this I realise I feel depressed. I’ve had other times in life that have been tricky, but I’ve not felt like this. I am filled with doom about the future. I can’t see a way through. I haven’t the energy to fight at the moment. Things that were more natural to me aren’t anymore. The black cloud has tightened it’s grip a bit. So this post hasn’t developed the way I thought it would… I didn’t expect to write this last paragraph- but that’s good- that’s why I blog, it helps me process, and this process has taken me to a slightly unexpected place… so I’m going to stop here and get back to where I started, focus on my breathing.
Thanks for listening