Those readers who do not suffer from depression will probably think this entry is a load of moaning and wonder why I just don’t dust myself off and get on with my life. Wish I could but it just ain’t like that.
I’ve suffered from bouts of depression for years but thankfully there are usually a few years in between when I live a normal life. How people who have more frequent bouts cope I really don’t know. Their life must be sheer hell. I can normally tell when an episode is on its way as I start to have difficulty sleeping. The short naps most of us like to take from time to time become impossible. It usually takes something specific to tip me over the edge but that can be more or less anything which would normally just knock me off balance for a day or two.
Such is the case at the moment. A friend is going through big changes in her life which are really very positive but with a few attendant dangers. It’s the dangers which have unbalanced me and have assumed an importance which is way out of line with reality. I’m getting attacks of anxiety which are driving me crazy. No matter how much I try to rationalise the situation, the emotional part of my brain just refuses to listen. It’s as if it were on auto-pilot which, in a sense, it probably is because the emotions have no intelligence to them whatsoever.
Anxiety attacks are revolting things. They become all consuming and, even worse, they feed on themselves. There is no way out other than drugs which make you feel rotten or just simply waiting until something manages to break the loop and take the worry away. Sometimes it’s possible to distract myself for a while by doing something absorbing (such as writing this entry) but almost as soon as I stop it all starts again.
One thing which would really help would be sleep. Just to be able to turn the mind off for a while would be great. To that end I have decided that if ever I find myself in a position to redesign the human body one thing I am going to provide is an OFF switch on the back of the head.
Posted 25 June 2004, 21:27 BST