I always know I’m near the bottom of my mental barrel when I redownload the Stephen Fry audiobook of Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone; this means I need familiarity and comfort. Something I know inside out where there’ll be no surprises – good or bad. I can escape (such a cliché – “escapism” ) to that world and imagine that I too have a witch’s ability to create my own cheering charm or, even better, to conjure my own Patronus (which is a calico cat according to Pottermore) to keep me company in all its soothing silvery, ethereal beauty. Oh, to live in a world where Protego Totalum were a genuine option to hide a depressive from the world – letting the world proceed as normal but with you shielded from it momentarily, and it shielded from you.
Yesterday, I ended up at the Caredoc for a migraine shot ,which to be honest was a waste of fifty euro as it didn’t really work. The Difene that the doctor gave me to take home didn’t help either. Or the SolpaExtra. Or the Rivotril. So I slept and stayed in darkness and wished that I wouldn’t need to get up to pee or that nobody would open my bedroom door. I’m pretty sure that I cleaned my teeth at some point… so there’s an achievement.
Today I managed ten minute yoga; a slow walk with one dog to the forest; a bath; make up; lunch; teaching two classes and a second trip to Tesco, this time with my King, which was much more secure than the first quick trip on my own after my walk to buy smoothie ingredients. Oh, and I made a smoothie. All the way around Tesco, despite my being a complete and utter dick all weekend – not just about Ireland winning the Grand Slam by beating England – my King’s home country – in the final showdown of the Six Nations, but a total; unmanegeable; ungrateful; stubborn; superior bitch all weekend – he hugged me and kissed me and offered for me to go sit in the car in case I was struggling as I tend to sometimes with crowds. He held my hand with his left as he manoeuvred the trolley with his right. He bought me treats and ingredients for him to cook dinners for the week and paid for it all because I’m broke. He showed the world that he thinks I’m worth snogging in the chickpea aisle of the supermarket even when I think I must be the worst thing that ever happened to him.
Right now, two dogs are play fighting beside me while Scandi daughter embroiders something pretty and watches The West Wing. There’ll be roast chicken; salad and crusty bread for dinner and even though I know I should go to choir, I’m at my emotional limit for today so I am hoping that our lovely director will understand.
I am trying to be as honest as I can possibly be lately with how I am struggling – not for attention; I’d much rather be left alone and never have to talk to anyone about it, but I’m hoping that anything I say in brutal honesty might encourage even one or two others to admit to someone they trust that they need some help too.
Tomorrow, despite the cost (fifty euro to see my GP and sixty five to see a trauma therapist), I’m making appointments to see them both because I will not let this get the better of me. This burning paralysis and fear of sleeping; of waking will pass – I know it will, if only I can push that damned boat of doom out to sea another time. I’ve done it before, I know this won’t be the last time I’ll have to launch it into the depths, weighed down by an anchor of love; resilience; writing; walking; talking; pharmaceuticals and of course; Harry Potter.