Most, if not all of my family and friends know the deal with me. It hasn’t been an issue, and has actually been the root of some truly wonderful, generous and kind conversations. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, my team are bloody amazing.
But I meet new people, and spend time with people that perhaps aren’t quite as in the know as others. And usually it is so far from being even remotely an issue. But sometimes, you have to raise some stuff that might seem a bit random.
For example, sometimes I have what I refer to as cloudy spells. Usually days or weeks, but sometimes (very, very rarely, thankfully) months. This is when my days are tinged with a steady darkness that is really hard to reign in and manage. The darker it gets, the harder it is to pull myself through it, and ironically, the more numb everything is. So weird.
To put it simply, I have a constant, unrelenting feeling of hopelessness. It is rubbish, and really all I want is to lie in bed. I loose my appetite (I know, WHAT?), and I find it really difficult to make decisions, even the most simple, like choosing what I’d like to eat for lunch. The whole idea of being social, like even replying to text messages is too much. And apparently, I also look a bit sad. Figures.
Anyway, to explain this period to someone is tricky, because for the most part, it really freaks them out. Not in the way that they jump up and run off, but in a caring, gorgeous way, where they really want to help but don’t know how. It’s like I can see their mind ticking over; do I hug her? Do I call her parents or her sister? Should I go out and buy her some chocolate? Oh my god, am I going to have to save her from herself?
Don’t ever underestimate the importance of saying you are there, and being willing and able to completely and truly listen. But don’t feel like I am expecting you to be a hero. I’ve grown to learn that these cloudy spells pass, and that I have the correct tools and skills at my disposal to bring me back. You reminding me of that now and then doesn’t go astray, but I know I can do this. There is one thing you can bring to the table that I can’t, and that’s your understanding. You don’t realise how far that goes.
Here’s to you getting it, and from the bottom of my heart, thank-you.