“No one likes getting their nails done more than I do.” ~ Serena...
“Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use.” ~ Emily Post
For the last three weeks I’ve been feeling what I’ve been tentatively describing as better. As in, like, actually better. In the head.
Up until now when I’ve realised that I’ve felt better it’s always just been better in relation to how poorly I’ve been. Still agonisingly, demoralisingly far away from actually being well again.
This time I really think I’m getting back to something approaching ‘normal’.
And it seems to have happened over night.
One minute I was hiding out in my flat, flipping out every time the postman came to the door, only venturing out in the dark of night. The next I found myself making a conscious effort to try to reconnect with people, organising lunch dates, making trips to the cinema, and doing my grocery shopping in the middle of the day.
It’s taken me a little by surprise – and it’s still too new for me to start feeling confident that it’s not just a temporary respite – but it’s a point that even as recently as a month ago I thought I’d never reach.
Now this is all, of course, pretty great. But something kind of strange is also happening.
You see, while I’ve been sick, and depressed, and traumatised, I haven’t really been feeling much of anything. I’ve been numb to near enough every feeling besides worry and despair.
But in the last couple of weeks I’ve been feeling lots of things.
Lots of normal things, I think – hunger, boredom, contentment, anticipation, enjoyment, impatience, amusement – that sort of thing.
The problem is that I’m having quite a bit of trouble identifying them individually. And how it is that each particular feeling has arisen. I’ve become so alienated from my feelings, through having been unable to experience them for so long, that I’m having a hard time recognising what they are when I feel them.
Okay, hunger I’m probably okay with.
But otherwise I’m feeling somewhat confused – okay, so I’m good on confusion as well, but for the rest of them I’m at a loss – by my feelings quite a lot of the time.
It doesn’t help that I think I’m experiencing a slightly delayed reaction to things. Presumably because I’m so out of practice at reacting to anything in any way besides excessive panicking. So that something could happen on, say, Sunday, and my emotional reaction to it might not kick in until Thursday.
Which is less than helpful for identification purposes.
I’m hoping that it’s like running, something that you get better and quicker at with practice, and that it’s all just a matter of time before I’m back up to speed.
Although, if I’m being completely honest, acknowledging and processing my feelings has never been something that I’ve been amazingly good. Which I suppose is one of the reasons I’ve been having so much trouble in the first place.
I’ll keep working on it.
In the meantime I now can’t get this song out of my head.
“Don’t make assumptions. Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.” ~ Miguel Angel Ruiz
Every week I check out the WordPress Weekly Writing Challenge for inspiration but I almost never end up writing anything for it. This week, however, the challenge is about adding forms to your posts, and there was a suggestion that maybe forms could be used as a way to connect with readers who weren’t necessarily comfortable writing what they had to say in the comments section.
This challenge actually got me to thinking about how this could be a useful thing for us.
I’ve received quite a lot of emails lately from people who wanted to ask me questions about my experiences with treatments, or talking to people about their experiences of mental health problems. There have been more from people who just had something they wanted to say to someone who they thought would get where they were coming from.
And that’s fantastic. I love hearing from you guys, in the comments, by email, on Twitter and Facebook; where ever. I also think it’s really great that people read this blog and feel that I’m someone who’s approachable and that they feel comfortable writing to.
But the writing challenge got me to thinking that a know a lot of people coming here looking for information, and this blog is quite big now; and I thought that it might be an idea to add a Frequently Asked Questions section to help people to find answers to the questions that I get asked a lot, more easily.
Either that, or, I was toying with the idea of running a question and answer style series of posts.
It needs a little more thought. But I realised that I could use a form to collect some feedback on this from you guys.
Do you think this is a good idea? If so is there anything you think I should particularly include? Is there anything you’d like to ask about? Is there anything you’ve been dying to ask me but didn’t feel brave enough to write in the comments?
Or, do you think this a really bad idea? Would you rather I forgot all about and stuck to just writing you whatever thoughts happen to be going through my head on a particular day? If so, I need to hear your input too.