This’ll do. For now….

Things have changed since last I wrote because after a brief mental interlude we’re pretty much back in business here in WeeGee Land. By back in business I mean I don’t much feel like sitting on the floor with my knees gathered up to my chin, staring at the wall for hours on end any more. Sometimes that’s what progress feels like and I’ve learned that progress is one of those things that you just have to take wherever, and however you find it.

Most of the time I still hate myself from wherever it is I start right down to the bottom of my fingernails – I feel hopeless and wretched and desperate BUT, above all else I know that this will end, that life will intervene and that I’ll find a way back to myself. Again. Somehow.

Like I said – we’re back in business. I’m busy putting one foot in front of the other, and pretending like I’m some kind of normal person with some kind of normal life. I’m busy doing the necessary because I know that even though I’m not where I want to be I’m on my way there, by hook or by crook. You’re never going to get there unless you’re on your way there, right?

I’m trying to handle myself more gently and I’m doing my best to be kind to myself. I’ve realised that, when it comes to myself, I always come at it sharp side first and I’m trying to figure out what that’s all about, because I don’t really show my sharp side to anyone else. I’m trying to give myself the same breaks I think everyone ought to have. I suppose I’m trying to get bigger and better, because I’m trying to forgive myself – it takes the biggest and the best people of all to nail that kind of shit.

I suppose I’ve accepted that sometimes, I’m going to get lost. I’m going to be sad, and hopeless, and frightened. All the evidence suggests that I’m going to get lost time after time and after time again despite by best efforts. The reality is that every time I think I’ve got myself on an even keel, the sky will fall in all over again and you know what – I’m tired of raging against the natural order of things. I’m tired of heaping failure on myself for a self that I didn’t choose and which is way beyond anything I can choose.

Sometimes I get sad. Sometimes I get lost. Sometimes the sky falls in. Sometimes I hate myself down to the very bottom of my fingernails. And them’s just the breaks. Sure – there’s stuff I can do. I can take care of myself and I can find a softer place to fall and I can try and try and try. But sometimes I’m STILL going to be sad and my brain is going to misfire and I’m going to wish I didn’t have to live with myself anymore. Some brains are better than others, and some people know how to deal with this shit. My brain isn’t one of the better ones and, I don’t really know how to deal with this shit but I’m learning, and I’m holding on tight and, more than anything, I’m still on my way to that place I’m trying to get to – wherever that is.

I suppose the point I’m trying to make – if I’m trying to make one at all – is that it’s okay. It’s okay that I get sad, and it’s okay that I rage against the world, and it’s even okay that I hate myself down to the bottom of my fingernails. It’s okay because I only feel that way for some of the time, and because I ALWAYS find my way out of the mire, and because fuck it – nobody said it was going to be easy anyway.

Anyhow. I’m pretty much back on my feet and squaring up to the world again. Things aren’t all perfect and sunshiny but then again I never was going to morph into the kind of person who leaps out of bed cartwheeling around singing about the wonderful morning I’ve woken up into (it’s that thing about sharp edges) Still, I’m as up and at ‘em as I know how, and the mornings keep on coming around, and that’ll do. For now.

Love you all lots, like jelly tots,

WeeGee xoxoxoxo

It isn’t easy being a WeeGee

It isn’t always easy being a WeeGee. Sometimes, my brain gets mixed up and I feel sad in my heart, even though I have no good reason to feel sad in my heart. And it’s hard to go about being an ordinary little WeeGee when your brain is all mixed up and your heart is all sad and none of the sense you have been counting on makes sense anymore.

No sense

The past couple of months have been tough. I’ve been hurting, and I’ve been angry, and I’ve been perpetually awake. I’ve been confused, and unsure, and at times a little frightened. I’m not really any of those things anymore. Mostly I’m just tired. I feel washed up, like a shipwreck: scattered and broken – made up of pieces that used to fit together and amount to something.

Right now, I don’t feel like I add up to much mostly, I think, because I don’t care. I’m empty. I’m not doing the things I do, or thinking the things I think, or being the person I am and I can’t really bring myself to care. I keep thinking about who I used to be and how unattainable that person seems to me now: just another ship that sailed….

Ship has sailed

People change, and things move on, and nothing can stay the same. I know that but I wonder how other people manage it. How do you leave yourself behind, when yourself if the only thing you’ve been cultivating for your entire life? How do you go about getting older when you’re already an awful lot older than you intended to be by now? How does anyone make sense of this – day after day, month after month, year after year? How do you keep on doing it, when your brain is mixed up, and you feel sad in your heart, and nothing makes sense, and you are not who you used to be, or who you want to be, and you just keeping get older even though you need time to stop so you can think before everything changes again?

Stop the worlf

I’m doing the best I can. I’m waking up in the morning and I’m just going with it. I’m taking the days as they present themselves to me. I’m investing myself when I get the tiniest little spark that suggests I might actually give a fuck. I’m putting one foot in front of the other until I find my way to bedtime and I fall asleep hoping that tomorrow will be better because I know that if I can hope for tomorrow, I can hold on until it comes.

Hope is the most important thing of all. Hope is the thing that carries your heart when it’s too heavy for you to bear; hope is tomorrow and every tomorrow after that; hope is why things change, and hope is why things get better.

Hope is where you get to when you have nowhere else to go and hope is the best thing to cling to on your way there. At least that’s what I hope, and that’s what I’m clinging to….

there-is-always-hope

Love you all like lots and lots of Jelly Tots,

 

WeeGee xxx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What if you told the truth?

Don’t you ever wonder what would happen if you told the truth? I mean if you really actually told it like it is in your head – if you didn’t sugar coat it, or make it palatable? What if you just came out and said it, as it is, whatever it is?

I spend a lot of my time wondering about that but in the end, I’m stuck with the way things are – polite conversation, behaving acceptably, not rocking the boat, and above all else not making people uncomfortable.

Nobody tells the truth because nobody wants to hear the truth.

If I were to tell the truth I’d say it hurts and that I’m angry and that I’m full of regret. I’d say that my nightmares aren’t full of abstract ideas but the one mistake I can’t live with, played out over and over and over again in all its gruesome reality. I’d say that’s why I can’t sleep – because every time I close me eyes THAT”S WHAT I SEE.

If I were to tell the truth I’d say I’m too old to put it right and that really, that’s what this is all about. Back then I thought I had so much time to make it better. I thought it was going to be different. I didn’t realise I was going to have to live with it, not like this. I thought there would be an ending. I thought I would put it all behind be and that would be the end.

If I were to tell the truth I’d say that for all the shame I feel that it wasn’t really my fault because I didn’t understand it – not like I do now. I’d also say that what I feel now is a just punishment, and that I deserve everything I get because WHY DIDN’T I MAKE MYSELF UNDERSTAND.

The truth can be contradictory.

Mostly, when you look at it, people do ordinary things with their lives. They find jobs and hobbies and people to love, and they buy houses, and fill them with things and children and pets and it’s all very ordinary.

When I was young I didn’t want ordinary, but now? Now I’d give everything and anything I could if I could have a tiny bit of ordinary in return. Everything and anything and whatever else it might take.

So yeah – If I were to tell the truth I would say that this person is not the person I was supposed to be, and this life was not the life I wanted to live. If I were to tell the truth I’d say that I’ve got it wrong – at every step, I’ve got it wrong.

If I were to tell the truth I’d say that I’m blessed with friends and family and love. And if I were to tell the truth I’d say that for everything I am blessed with, somehow I am cursed with more.

Just some thoughts…..

I don’t mean to be alarming, but I’m tired of this. I’m tired of how it goes, and what it all means and where this ends up. Where this ends up, by the way, is almost always me – wide awake while the rest of the world is sleeping – wondering why in the name of fuck I can’t just have one of those normal brains that behaves itself and gives itself peace and generally doesn’t do this shit 

By my reckoning it’s been about twenty days (or nights) since I last managed to get a decent night’s sleep under my belt. As a rule I can’t seem to get to sleep and even if I do I end up tossing and turning because I’m cursed by strange nightmares that wake me up way before I’ve had anything approaching enough sleep. Bottom line? I’m so very, very tired. And yet here I am: wide a fucking wake when by rights, I ought to be asleep. 

Insomnia isn’t new to me. I’ve been here, bought the t-shirt and come out the other side MANY TIMES before. Seriously. If the doomie gloomies think keeping me awake against my will FOR WEEKS AT A TIME is enough to beat me into submission? Well – the doomie gloomies never came up against a WeeGee like me before, I guess. 
This is a bad patch and that much is obvious. The fact that I can’t sleep is part of the bad patch and not sleeping makes the bad patch worse. On the surface it feels like a double injustice but at least I’m eating right because I LEARNED THAT LESSON and I’m not hurting myself BECAUSE I LEARNED THAT LESSON and I’m doing all I can to get through this BECAUSE I LEARNED THAT LESSON (Or, to be fair – I’m learning that last lesson as I go – it all counts)

In part – this post is what depression looks like. Something as straightforward as being awake when every fibre of your being wishes you were asleep. 
I’ve lived with depression, on and off, for more than half of my life. I’ve tried to talk about it, and write about it, and somehow make it real. I’ve lived with it, loved with it and lost with it. Sometimes it has been the biggest part of my life, and sometimes I’ve barely known it was there. 

This week is depression awareness week. In an ideal world I’d have written something different, more meaningful – something better to mark it. As it stands I couldn’t write the post I wanted to – depression stopped me.

Instead I wrote this because it was the best that I could do. My name is WeeGee. I have depression. This is a little bit of what it feels like but only a little bit. I’m not ready to write the rest. Not just yet. 

One for sorrow

Earlier today I was watching a magpie going about his business. You know? That single solitary magpie that makes your heart sink and fills you with a strange sense of dread even though there isn’t a superstitious bone in your body? ‘One for sorrow’ I thought, ‘ONE FOR SORROW’ and somehow, in that moment, I felt like I had accidentally stumbled upon the meaning of life. 
What? Too melodramatic you say? A little self indulgent? I don’t suppose I can argue with that….

  
Safe to say that it hasn’t really been plain sailing weather here in WeeGee land of late. Truth told things have been pretty fucking torrid although it is important to note that I haven’t once thought about jumping out the window. This, by the way, is how looking on the bright side goes at the moment: I may well be coming apart at the seams but hey! At least I haven’t spent any time sizing up the light fittings. 

I feel separate from the things that are going on around me. I know that I am here and I know that ‘things’ are going on around me. What I don’t know is how in the name of fuck I go about connecting the two. There are things and then there is me and never the twain shall meet. It’s not so much that I don’t care (even though mostly, I don’t) – it’s more that I have no part to play in any of this because I’m not exactly here; I’m just skulking about on the sidelines feeling detached and wishing the whole world would go away and leave me in peace.

  
More than anything, I’m struggling with guilt because what right do I have to fall apart right now? I’m lucky: my life is mostly charmed and nothing terrible has happened to me. I know people – I CARE about people – who haven’t had a lot of luck, who don’t live such a charmed life and who are coming to terms with all kinds of grief and pain. Christ, I know someone who doesn’t know where their next meal is coming from and who may not have a roof over their head tonight. So how the fuck can can this be happening to me – what right do I have to feel like the sky is falling in and that nothing will ever be the same again? Shit. The worse thing likely to happen in my life this weekend is going to fucking Waitrose and discovering they’ve still run out of the ONLY brand of cat litter my little prince of a cat is willing to pee on at the moment……

  
I don’t think I’ve felt this crazy since the last time I went bat shit crazy. That was a long time ago now but, man, it was tough. That said, I guess the thing for me to remember is that I got through it. I came out the other side – my life was just about in tact and I started again. Most importantly of all, the life I landed in after I was bat shit crazy was infinitely better than the life I was living before I was bat shit crazy. I learned a lot about myself and it was okay in the end and I guess these things are sent to try us….and all that jazz.
For now, we’re back to the old drill here in WeeGee land. One foot in front of the other in front of the other in front of the other until you don’t even realise you’re doing it anymore. That’s how this works and that’s what you do – I know the drill of old and it hasn’t failed me yet.

  
I end with a song, in the time honoured WeeGee land tradition. It doesn’t mean anything. I just like it, a guilty pleasure, I guess.  

Love you all lots like jelly tots,

WeeGee

PS – I’m sorry the images are all different sizes. It offends my sensibilities too but I’m on an iPad and I can’t edit them properly xxxx

 

Down at the bottom of the garden….

As far as I’m aware, I never did pack a bag and run away to the bottom of the garden when I was a kid – even although I was probably exactly the kind of kid you’d have expected to spend her time packing bags and running away to the bottom of the garden.  
Now I’m a grown up……

No, that’s not quite right. Wait, stick with me, I’ll get this…..

Now I can do a reasonable impression of being a grown up…..

That’s it, that’s much better.

Now I can do a reasonable impression of being a grown up and running away to the bottom of the garden isn’t an option anymore. Dammit, fuck, fuck and fuckity fuck. Running away to the bottom of the garden isn’t EVEN AN OPTION anymore. 

I can’t tell you how much I wish I’d done it while I had the chance.

  
It’s not so much that there is anything I want to escape from because everything is fine. (For the avoidance of doubt – everything is really, actually and properly FINE and yes, I’m taking my meds and did I mention that everything is FINE?). It’s just that I’d like a bit of peace and quiet without all of this ‘life’ going on around me, or at least without me having to take part in it. I just want to duck out for a bit, you know? Be by myself and with myself and most of all I don’t want to have to answer for the quiet I need right now.

  
It’s tough, isn’t it? I love the people in my life. I’m glad that they’re in my life and I know that I’m lucky to have them. But right now? I want to be alone and I need to be in charge. I know that I’m not making a lot of sense to people right now but that’s because I need time to make sense of myself first. This is only ever going to make sense if I have time to find the sense for myself. I have to do things in the right order, in my own way and in my own time. 

Thing is, I’ll get there, to wherever it is I have to get to, so long as I can get there on my terms. 

I don’t need to run away to the bottom of the garden. I just need a little time. That’s the way things roll here in WeeGee land. Ever it was thus.

All my love and lots and lots of jelly tots and here’s a song…..

WeeGee xoxoxo

Whatever is in front of me

Hello. It’s me, WeeGee. You remember me, right? 
I’ve been away for a while and, I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t entirely sure I was ever coming back. Everything had changed, you see, and this little corner of the Internet didn’t feel like it belonged to the new world order. This was about the me that was, back then, when the fabric of things was altogether different. 
  
I suppose, what I’m saying is that I’ve been busy being the me that is now – carving out a new space and getting used to spending time in it. It’s taken me until now to figure where my blog fitted in The All New (not exactly singing and dancing) WeeGee Land. I suppose, what I’m also saying is – I’M BACK , although exactly what the fuck that is going to mean remains unclear.

At the moment, life is very much about whatever it is that’s in front of me at any given time. It’s more than just going through the motions but it’s less than living life in full technicolour. As has often been the case, I’m stuck somewhere between two extremes – I’m sitting in the middle waiting although I have no idea what it is I’m waiting for. 

  

Every once in a while I still seem to find my way to the very edge of the universe; truth told, I think that this is just the way things will be for me. Mrs Mountain tells me I should accept and forgive myself and I know she has a point so I’m trying to figure out what the edge of the universe can teach me about finding ways to live the life that is in front of me. The edge of the universe is nowhere near as terrifying as I once thought it was: I used to go there and think about jumping but now I peer over the edge and know that there are softer places for me to fall. 

  
Recently it has struck me that its easy to romanticise mental health difficulties – to make it all about noble battles fought by brave warriors who are somehow stronger, more worthy, than the three in four of us who are lucky enough to remain untouched. I seem to see it all the time and, you know what? I’m calling bullshit on that bullshit. 

  
There is nothing romantic about the cruel tricks your brain can play on you. NOTHING. N. O. T. H. I. N. G. Living your life whilst your brain implodes, and meaning leaves you, and everything hurts, and hope disappears? That’s not romantic. That’s an awful reality that won’t leave you alone and that colours everything you are and everything you thought you could be. 

The bottom line is that my life is not a battle and I am not a warrior. My life is just my life and I want to live it, whatever the reality might be. So what if my brain is imploding, or meaning has left, or everything hurts, or hope has disappeared? That’s just what’s in front of me – a set of facts, not at all unique. No heroics, nothing special – just what’s in front of me. End of story. 

I needed to get that off my chest. I’m glad I did. 

Meanwhile in other news I’ve been wondering how you guys are all doing. I can see things have changed here on WordPress and I’ve got a lot of catching up to do. Give me a week and I’ll be right on top of this….. Nothing else to report today save that would you care for a song to wrap this thing up:

Love you all lots, like jelly tots

WeeGee xoxoxo

Only tomorrow knows

There is nothing remarkable about my story.

I can tell it so that it’s funny, or sad, or boring, or hopeful, or desperate, or happy, or tragic. I can tell it like it’s all of those things at the same time, or I can tell it like it’s none of them at all. I can start my story anywhere – at the beginning, in the middle, or at any of the endings so far. I can tell it backwards, or forwards, or in no particular order at all. I can have one big story or lots of little stories. I can tell it differently depending on how I feel or who I’m telling it to.

There is nothing remarkable about my story and, in that regard, my story is no different from anyone else’s story. My story, like every single one of the millions of other stories is really nothing but a changing and changeable narrative that frames a life lived and forces it to make sense. That is what my blog has been about: a space for me to tell the story of myself to myself – a search for sense and meaning hiding in the madness I must live.

When I stopped blogging my story didn’t stop and I certainly didn’t stop longing for sense. And so I found different ways to tell my story and I found meaning in places I hadn’t looked before. Blogging gave me one kind of narrative; not blogging gave me another narrative entirely.

It would seem, that for today at least, my story is happening here even though it hasn’t happened here for the longest time. Today, this space feels like the right space – the only place I want to be. Tomorrow may feel different or it may feel the same. Only tomorrow can tell how tomorrow will feel. I have learned to wait for tomorrow patiently, and with hope in my heart. I have learned that tomorrow always comes to move the story on, although not always to the place I expected to end up.

It may be obvious to you, I don’t know. But today I am whimsical, and thoughtful, and maybe not terribly focused on what I’m trying to say or trying to do. As far as comeback posts go, this is may be a little confusing to those living outside my head. But this is my space, I carved it out of nothing at my lowest ebb and I wanted to come back today – to make it mine again and have a different voice and a different story to tell. I wanted to come here. I wanted to speak.

Maybe I’m just nostalgic – missing WordPress and missing the blogging buddies that I didn’t take out into the real world with me. Or maybe this is something new: a new chapter, or a sequel to the last story, or maybe even it will turn out to be the beginning of a new story altogether. Only tomorrow will tell….

I leave you with a song, much love, and lots and lots of jelly tots xoxoxo

The stars look very different today

Since last I wrote I can’t help feeling that the world has shifted slightly – that somehow it is different than it was before.

Like many people of my age and musical persuasion I spent a happy chunk of my early twenties exploring the David Bowie back catalogue and in the years that have followed I’ve returned to some of the treasures I discovered from time to time. That’s the extent of my David Bowie story – which is really just to say that his music found its way into the corners of my soul and stayed there with all the rest of the music I’ve taken to my heart.

Of course there’s no reason that what WeeGee has to say about Bowie’s passing matters, save I suppose that it matters to WeeGee because, as far as anything goes, music matters.

If my blog has only one consistent theme it’s that music matters. Music is about hope, and despair, and belonging, and meaning, and happiness, and grief. Music is about life and death and everything in between. It’s what keeps my chin up and helps me make sense of the things that hurt. David Bowie’s music was, and will remain, part of that.

The stars look very different today, no less beautiful, but different nevertheless. Perhaps there’s another one up there tonight, shining just a little brighter than the rest…..

Farewell Starman. Over and out.

 

Hello. It’s WeeGee

It’s been far too long since my last post for me to begin with my usual ‘since last I wrote’ update. I thought about looking back over 2015 and writing some kind of ‘year in review’ piece, but in the end I decided that it all boiled down to pretty much the same thing: there has been life and some bits have been better than the rest. If that sounds a little pessimistic, it really isn’t intended to: when all’s been said and done, it’s only the better bits that count anyway.

Hello, by the way and happy new year (I realise now that would have made for a better beginning than the rambling paragraph I decided to go with. What can I say? You live. You learn). Welcome to the 2016 edition of How do you eat an elephant? I hope you’re all fine and dandy and filled full of the optimism and hope that a Brand New Year usually brings with it?

You may or may not be pleased to learn that I’m hoping to fit in a lot more blogging in 2016 but, at this stage and for the avoidance of any doubt whatsoever I need to make it clear that I have NOT made it a new year’s resolution. I’m not well known for finishing things at the best of times and the chances of me saying I’ll do something on the 1st January and still giving a flying fuck three days later, let alone a WHOLE year later are slim to say the least. The fact that it is January and I am (sorta) promising to do more of something in the coming year does NOT mean I’ve gone and made a new year’s resolution. Okay, so I’m glad we’ve got that cleared up…..

I may DEFINITELY NOT have made any new year’s resolutions but I am, nevertheless, pretty optimistic about the year to come. I quite like being at this end of the year looking forward before any of the time has run out. It feels shiny and new and there are endless possibilities. For example, winning the Booker prize for my first (as yet unwritten) novel only ever feels possible in the first few days of January – of each new year. I expect it will be ever thus, but I’m glad that the possibility remains, and indeed returns, no matter how many times the world has turned beneath my feet.

I head into 2016 in better shape than I headed into 2015, of that I am sure. I’m also sure that I headed into 2015 in better shape than I headed into 2014 so I’m marking the past few years down as a victory for progress. I’m still getting used to living with myself a little more, and a little better every day. The ebbs and flows of my brain don’t engulf me the way they once did – I’m safer in my own skin somehow. I catch myself when I start to fall and make running repairs as I go. Of course there are still grey days, and obstacles, and challenges and heartache. I know that these are things that will never be far from my side; I know that knowing is a large part of the battle fought.

Anyway. I just stopped by to share what’s in my head today. Now you know and I’ve achieved what I set out to. There is news – of course there’s news, there’s always news. I’ll save that for another day though and leave you instead with a song of old just for the sake of a song of old:

Love you all lots like Jelly tots,

With smiles, or hugs, or hope or whatever else you need, WeeGee xoxo