D4D

The choice of a sweary generation ®

Archive for the category “Depression”

Bourdain

Last week, I was as surprised as everyone else to hear that the chef Anthony Bourdain had committed suicide.

Bourdain was a huge influence on the catering world – you only have to read the many obituaries (including this one) to see the influence he had, and the respect in which he was held.

Depression and suicide are bastards. They make you think you’re not worth anything, make you think the world won’t miss you, make you insignificant. They’re lying bastards.

Twitter and Facebook have been full of people expressing shock, and making depression and mental health a subject to speak about, to help remove the stigma around it all, and make more people aware of how prevalent these things really are.

If nothing else good comes out of the deaths of celebrities, then at least it’s making people talk, making mental health normalised and spoken about.  And that can’t be a bad legacy really, can it?

Flattened

Yet again, things round here have eased off a bit, I haven’t been updating as regularly as I could/should be doing.  In fairness, that’s not just something that’s been happening here, it’s also been breaking through into other aspects of life, and I’m working my way through the whole thing.

I’ve been describing it to myself as being permanently tired, although as per the title, “Flattened” is perhaps a better description.  So, probably, is “Depressed, but Functional”  They’d all be fair, for sure.

Thing is, I don’t feel depressed. I just feel tired.  I still get up, go to work, do all the idiot stuff I do on weekends. But in many ways it feels like I’m doing a lot of it on autopilot – because I’m tired.

It’s meant I haven’t done some stuff, and some new things (or revisited things) just haven’t happened yet, because I’m too tired, too flat to make the effort.

I don’t know quite what to make of it. I’m figuring it out, and I think (hope) I’ve turned a bit of a corner over the weekend, so in some ways it’s a case of waiting to see what develops.  I know that in some ways I’ve done more new stuff this week already than I probably did in the previous three months.

I’m not going to force the issue – as I said previously, Q2 of 2018 also involves more downtime, which I’m hoping will free up some mental bandwidth, and allow me to start doing some of the stuff that’s currently sitting in my brain saying “Well? Get on with it”.

That’s how it feels at the moment, anyway. Whether the same will be true tomorrow morning, or next week, next month – only time will tell. We’ll see.

Booking Time Out

At the end of 2017 (and of 2016, and of 2015 – I know, I know) I said about needing to take more time out, take some breaks from work and so on.

I am rotten at taking time off – it’s never been high on my driving factors, and really it just ends up being expensive, and me just spending time on my own somewhere else.  And with all that, I find it way too easy to put off booking holidays and time away, it’s such a low priority that it always falls off the bottom of the list of things to do.

So this year, I’ve booked stuff already. I’ve got three breaks locked in, booked and paid for.  One in February, one in May, and one in November.

It’ll be interesting to see, come the end of 2018, whether I feel better for having those breaks or not.  I’m not sure, but I’m going to give it all a go, and find out.

Missing Time/Posts

So we’re only three weeks into 2018, and already I’ve lost a week’s posts. Just didn’t do them – started stuff, but life and other stuff got in the way, so I’ve started the year by being crap.  (Not that that’s anything unusual, but there we go)  Sure, I could cheat and backdate some things, but that’s not really the way to go. I could, but I won’t.

It’s sort-of annoying, but at the same time it’s a result of being a) stupidly busy and b) that overall sense of Grey. Thankfully,the tail-end of last week involved some brighter days where blue sky was visible along with direct sunlight, and that’s helped a lot.

This year I don’t know that I’ll always keep to the posting routine – but I’ll do my best.

Anyway, here we go for the rest of the year, and let’s see how I do…

Grey Skies

January is a funny old month in some ways – and particularly so when I look at how it affects my SAD and so on.

As usual, this January has been grey. Different degrees of grey admittedly, including some brighter/lighter grey days, and a fair bundle of darker ones.

Grey days are the ones that affect me the most, regardless of the degree.  I find that a grey week with no sight of the sun really affects me – I still get out for fresh air and some daylight, but a few days without direct sunlight and it leaves me feeling far flatter and more tired than usual.

As it is, I’ve found more and more that I can deal with shorter days (although obviously I notice them, and they affect me) so long as they’re bright, and have sight of sunlight.  The days now are getting longer – almost imperceptibly, but they are.  But with this weeks lack of sun, it’s actually been a far tougher week to get through.

Hopefully the coming week will have more chances for some decent daylight.

Getting Longer

Yesterday was the Winter Solstice – the Shortest Day (and, of course, the Longest Night) of 2017.

From here on, for the next six months, the days get longer again. Only by a few seconds per day, but it all adds up.

Honestly, the Winter Solstice is more important to me than the whole of the Festering Season.

So every year I’m happy to see it happen.  The dark days are finite, even if they come round again next year.

Downtime(ish)

The weekend just gone ended up being a proper weekend “off”, and much needed. The last few weeks (well, months) have been pretty hectic, what with one thing and another. This weekend had been kind-of empty, but that also meant I’d booked stuff in.

I should’ve taken the hint though – a couple of weeks ago I cancelled off my first plan (a restaurant visit) because I just wasn’t feeling it, wasn’t looking forward to it, and where’s the fun in it when every single reaction to it is “blah”?  So I sacked that off, and had made other plans, which then fell through a bit. No-one’s fault, just short-notice and other things already booked with the people in question.   So I’d made a third plan, a day-trip to Manchester (travelling by train, so it was still semi-sensible, by my standards) which would’ve been fun – I haven’t been back to Manchester in a good eighteen months or so.

And then on Wednesday/Thursday I got an email making me aware that Manchester was going to be full of football stuff, plus a few other events, and I realised that actually I didn’t want that – and I particularly didn’t want that super-packed train home. Not in the mood for the people and the crowds, blah blah.

So I sacked it all off, admitted defeat (not quite the right word, but it’ll do for now) and stayed home. I still did a fair amount – sorted a bundle of domestic stuff, got rid of some things to the local tip, went to the cinema to watch a rubbish and easy-watching film on the Saturday, and then went out with local friends on the Sunday evening.

Basically, it was all enough to appease my brain’s nagging work ethic, but without doing much more than the bare minimum to appease it.

It was good – but also annoying, because I don’t actually feel any better for that quiet weekend. Maybe it’s a lost hope now, but I wanted to sleep, and to feel somewhat refreshed by the end of a peaceable and quiet weekend – but I don’t. I’m still tired, still feeling a bit blah about things, and just trying to figure shit out.

It was needed, but I kind-of wish it felt like I’d had more benefit out of it…

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