Monday, 18 January 2010

Bears say hi ...

So difficult to write this. I have been ill. I'm not even sure what has happened to me. And that is most unusual. For me not to fully understand what is going on. Usually, whatever state of illness I have been in, I've been able to observe it, analyse and understand it even as I was experiencing it. Some would say this is due to my prior learning, but I think it's as much due to my natural interest in the workings of the mind. I have strangely always enjoyed watching my own psychological process, no matter how distressed I have been. I find it fascinating, exciting even, to see the delicate workings of the mind unfolding. To see the usual pathways diverted. To feel what fragmentation feels like compared to wholeness. To see what is underneath the usual psychological set up. What is at the root of all of us, in other words.

But this last couple of weeks has been different. Blank. Numb. Shaking and crying. Unable to cope with anything or even think too much.

I'm not sure what to make of it. Hell, if I'm going to be mentally ill, I at least want it to be interesting. This has just been tediously boring.

I think it has been severe anxiety. Overwhelming. For what reason? Anxiety about the future.

I KNOW, I KNOW. If I could just stop worrying about the future, I'd actually be able to have a life right now.

But the fact is that I do need to make plans for the future and be able to see a way ahead from here. But every time I do that I just come up against this terrible anxiety until I give up on it. Not being able to make plans and change things over the last few years for this very reason has meant that I have been "stuck"; unable to move forward with my life. You might say, well life carries on anyway, whatever plans anyone makes - which is true of course. I'm still alive despite having no forward plans. But in order to have a life which is worth living I need desperately to make changes, and that requires planning, which is where I fall apart. Even on the planning.

Most people in reasonable mental health can at least do the planning stage, though many will not get further than that of course. It takes guts to make changes. Most can plan to leave a bad relationship, change their job, start their own business, blimey, even eat better and get some exercise! How many will actually carry it through? Most, not until it gets really desperate. I suppose that a lot of the time we are consoling ourselves with our plans, even when we feel unable to act of them. The consolation of the diet starting on Monday, or after whatever holiday it is. I will leave him when the kids are ___ age. I will start my own business after this recession/ when I have paid x% off the mortgage. So I'm not even getting the consolation. On the other hand these rationalisations allow us to carry on as we are. It means we can put off change for another day.

I have been putting off change for many years now. Of course, at times I have really been too ill to make significant change. At other times, circumstances have made the changes that I wanted impossible.

But generally, if I am being honest with myself, change of some sort has ALWAYS been possbible.

So my mission at the moment is to see change in a more positive light, so it doesn't scare the sh*t out of me.

Thank you so much to those people who have lefts comments and sent emails worried about where I am and what has happened to me. Thank you for caring so much and sticking with me. I hope to catch up with you all soon. I haven't even signed into blogger or read my email over the last couple of weeks. But, hopefully normal service will be resumed very soon.

The only light in my life recently has been the snow! Do these photos look cold enough or what? They have not been put through a filter or anything. They were taken in the park by the river. The huts on the other side of the river are the allotments.

Once again, thank you friends. I'll be visiting you all soon ....

Bearfriend xx


  1. I'm so glad you've resurfaced! It sounds like you've had an awful couple of weeks, and I really wish I could think of something helpful to say - but I can't. Although given your physical illness before Christmas, I would suggest that maybe some part of what you've been feeling has come from being weak and run down generally, perhaps?
    Those photographs are beautiful, they almost make me miss the snow!
    Welcome back, I've missed you!

  2. I was so glad to see you'd posted again, Bearfriend. I'm sorry you've been in such a low place. You've been on my mind a lot.

    There is a delicate line between obsessing about and planning for the future. And of course there is absolute utter immobility. I hope you are on the upswing from this difficult period.

    Your snow pictures are beautiful - I love the somber blue tones - very evocative of extreme cold and harshness. Perhaps the weather and lack of sun have played a role in your recent doldrums. I know I've been feeling as though I'm traipsing through heavy dense mud at times since it's been so cold here.

    Please take care of yourself with kindness and compassion. It's wonderful that you've emerged and connected with your friends here again.

  3. i can emphasise, i been dealing with a lot of anxiety myself lately so i don't really have any good advise just want to send you my love and understanding. I love the pictures...walking in the cold snow covered woods with my dogs seems to keep me sane at the moment.
    Hugs ♥

  4. Finally!! Been wondering where you were at! Glad you're posting again. Sometimes all we can do is one day at a time, and then string those good days together as best we can. I know how much you were enjoying your walks before you got sick. Think you could bundle up warm and try it again? Just for today? We'll worry about doing it tomorrow when tomorrow gets here. :)

  5. Had just started reading your blog, so I was surprised when you hadn't posted for a while. Please take care... Hugs.


  6. Oh my, I wish I could reach out and give you a hug. I need to make some decisions and changes myself and I can kinda understand how you feel, change is hard, change is scary, change is ultimately inevitable. Tiny changes aren't so scary, one little thing at a time.

    So glad you're back blogging. That is a positive thing.

  7. I thought you had lost your Internet connection for good and that you were no longer willing to go to that pub to be on line. I had no idea that you were suffering. But why are you so concerned about the future? Why don't you just live comfortably one day at the time with the comfort of looking back at the day and knowing that it was a good one? Isn't that what you want to achieve first? I think you should establish happiness in the here and now first before you should start worrying about the future. I'm not even to that point yet. I have very vague ideas about it myself and barely any plans at all. I'm surviving now and doing the best I can. I only think in terms of days and maybe a week ahead and that's it. Maybe I'm wrong and other people have better ideas. You should listen to what they have to say. Take good care of yourself.


  8. Sending love and hugs, there is something on my blog for you xx

  9. I've been thinking about you and keeping you in my prayers. I hope you start feeling better soon.

    I love the snowy photos.

  10. Thank you for posting. You've been heavy on my mind Bearfriend. I wish I had words of wisdom but I don't. I can't begin to understand how the anxiety stops you cold. We're all here rooting for you.

    The pictures are just hauntingly lovely. Missing you a great deal... your friend Paula

  11. thanks for letting know your friends that you are fine i can say that situations like this we all faces in different times,i agree that you need some positive changes in your mind and you need badly to get close to your god try it once for some time you will discover the new you,cause anxiety or stress are the gifts of loneliness,but believe me you are not alone he loves you more then every one just call him once with you heart you will find him in you in every where you are so strong and can do what ever you want jus start wanting ,for give me if i talked much

  12. Good to 'see' you again. :o) Your river photos with the allotment sheds in the background look very similar to the ones in my neck of the woods - perhaps we're neighbours?!

  13. Glad to see you back.

    Kick me if I'm totally off track, but perhaps you could try to do very, very small changes, just to help get over the paralysing fear. I don't know what those changes could be for you, but just tiny, tiny ones might help.

    I'm just a person who tries to give concrete and hopefully helpful suggestions. You can feel free to kick me though. I won't mind.

    Be well.

  14. I'm with the green stone women - you have a lot to enjoy and appreciate now, the future is only a collection of todays... and today gave me a lot to smile about. But I can see why you'd feel badly those pics are so dreary, my friend, you need a change of scenery, even if it's just a fun, lively movie or a uplifting book...we love ya..

  15. (((Bearfriend))) I'm so sorry you're having such a terrible time. If it's any consolation, I went through a looooong period of being unable to do anything beyond stare into space. I couldn't even open the mail! One day, as if by some miracle, my ability to plan, and even do, starting to return. As it will for you as well, I'm sure.

    Please take care and be gentle with yourself.


  16. ((((Bearfriend)))) We all care what happens to you and miss you when you are not here. Take good care and post when your up to it.

    Hang in there lady!


All comments gratefully appreciated!