Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Reports of my demise, etc

So, I’m still here. Obviously.

Still a struggle, of course. I’ve not felt this low in years. I just realised that this morning, I’m back to the time when I genuinely feel lucky to have made it through the day. The hardest part is that, while that should feel like an achievement, feel like a victory, it doesn’t, because I know I’ll have to do it all again, day after day, and I don’t think I’m strong enough. I know I’m not strong enough, or I wouldn’t be in this mess. So maybe I should just bow to the inevitable and give in. Take that easy way out. I know it’s there, I’ve opened that door before and stood on the threshold looking through into the inviting, terrifying darkness beyond and, once you’ve opened that door you can’t forget that it’s there.

Things are slightly simpler now. I’ve broken up with my girlfriend so I only have myself to worry about. Selfish, I know. That was making it so difficult, though, like it has before. The worry that I’ll be dragging someone else down with me making the spiral worse. That tendency to isolation that I’ve mentioned before; drive people away to make things simpler, hurt them now so they don’t get hurt later, because if they want to be around me their judgement obviously can’t be trusted anyway.

I’ve thought I was better for so long, but I guess I’m just not able to cope with stress. The stress of a relationship, of work when it gets difficult - and my job is relentless at the moment. At least I don’t have the immediate stress of poverty as I did before, although there is the worry of what will happen if I become completely unable to cope with work. I’ve almost had to walk out - or run out, screaming - several times in recent weeks, and the sickness benefits of this job are a lot less generous than those I’ve had before and, should it go beyond that, the benefits system a hell of a lot less forgiving.

So I guess I’ll continue on as best I can.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Last post

Is it this lump of complex meat between our ears that makes life so complicated? Is this thing that has enabled us to become masters of our biosphere ultimately our destruction? Or is it only some of us? Perhaps those we describe as sociopaths are the future, able to move through life unburdened by self-doubt and the constant worry of their effect on others. Or perhaps I am generalising, assuming that my affect is the norm. maybe the mass of humanity manages the everyday, copes with vicissitudes of life without too much worry, and it is only my unwarranted assumption that my mental state is the norm that is at fault. Perhaps I am merely the opposite end of the bell curve to the sociopath; I carry the weight of conscience that they slough off, like a duck in a rainstorm. (but even that thought weighs heavy; am I not just grasping at straws to make myself feel special?)

I’ve hurt someone I professed to love. Again. It’s become a pattern and, perhaps more than that, an inevitability. I’ve long thought that the only worthwhile reason for existence is to make the world a better place, in whatever small way I can. To be happy to and make other people happy, to improve things. But if my existence does the opposite, makes the world worse by bringing unhappiness, where does that leave me?

The thing that has stopped me before is the thought that my leaving may hurt some small number of people so severely that it is unconscionable, even though I am not here to live with the consequences, but that position is increasingly untenable.

I’m sorry.

Saturday, 1 August 2015

I don't know if I can do this anymore

I don't know if I can do this.

OK, background. After a massive breakdown some years ago I was a wreck. After losing my partner of sixteen years and my job I was on benefits for years, trying to hold myself together and generally being a fuck up. I hurt people, people who tried to help me, to love me.

Then things started t come together. Some friendships and getting an exercise regimen sorted and getting a dog - all things that only months or even weeks before wouldn't have been possible, but fell into place at a time I could handle them. Then I got back into work and a relationship. I was normal again.

It felt great. Having a job is the best therapy, it really is; it gives you self worth and self respect and all that shit - and I was able to not only  start paying off my debts but actually afford stuff, going out and buying things! I started socialising and stuff; it was a transformation.

The relationship started soon after, possible helped by my new-found confidence. A steady courtship with an old flame lead to more, and it was wonderful.

But two years down the line things are starting to fall apart. In recent months the job has become increasingly stressful and I feel that I am floundering. I just don't know if I can cope; I regularly consider calling in sick or even leaving part way through the day. I feel incompetent. And cracks have been apparent in the relationship for some time. I don't know if this is where I want to be. Am I in love, or wanting to be in love, or pretending that I'm in love? I'm just going to hurt someone else who has trusted me.

Part of it is that I feel I have lost myself. In the years of rebuilding myself I had been writing - I'm not sure it was any good but I've been doing it and getting better at it - and taken up photography, at which I'd think I had become quite decent. But in the last two years I've hardly done these. The focus on the 'important stuff' has left little energy fr anything else.

The only thing that is consistently better is my fitness. I took up running (in my forties!) and run 40-50 km a week, a half marathon most months, and am aiming for a marathon in October. This is an accomplishment, yes - but it is also my drug, being able to ignore everything else and exult in the focus and muscle ache and endorphin rush. So I recognise that this, as much as it keeps me close to sanity, is my drug. Along with alcohol.

So I shall probably plug away, keep on going and hope I come out of the other side. Ignore the stress and the worry and the crying and the booze and the ideation (imaging the the cold bite of steel in my wrists or closing my eyes while I cycle to work and letting chance decide my fate). Because I don't know what else to do.