So I just noticed that the last few blogs I’ve written have been to do with my mental health. I think this means I need to do more than simply writing to do lists.
I can plan to my hearts content but the reality is i’ve got a hell of a lot of events coming up. I’m not sure I have a quiet period til christmas.
Oh Lordy, Christmas! That’s another mountain to climb.
I’m writing this on my phone as my Chromebook has decided to shut down at random intervals. It’s where I tend to do most of my writing. I don’t dare now for fear of losing passages mid-sentance.
Today’s wordcount: 436, mostly the newsletter for work
I have been somewhat overwhelmed of late. My calendar is full and my mind won’t stay still. I find posting relaxing. It gives me a chance to collect my thoughts and process the day. There are times when my anxiety does not want me to take account of my days. I’m afraid that if I stop and think for a moment all those worries will come crashing down and engulf me.
So I keep on going, full speed ahead until I crash head first into a brick wall. I am attempting to circumnavigate the eventual injury by ensuring I keep to my routine. Alarms are reset, to do lists re-written time will not run riot over my days.
Word count for the last few days: 1,168
My week has been a whirlwind of activity. I cannot think of a single day in which I had time to rest, never mind write!
I can feel my mind becoming overloaded. Manic bursts of energy followed by pure exhaustion. Days rush past with unnatural speed. Tight cracking jaw, the frustrating insistence of a tension headache. Thoughts rush with anxious urgency then vanish with the next task. Pin pricks of guilt. Forgotten obligations.
I need space.
I need silence.
My routine has been shot to hell due to various disruptions; ranging from a funeral to a nasty illness in which I slept for five days straight. It’s bee about a week since we’ve gotten back and I’m beginning to chisel back some form of routine.
Today I tackled the muddle that is the resolution of my novel. I now have a fully formed plan and am super excited to get out of the planning phase and into writing!
Not really sure what my word count is today because there’s been a lot of copying, pasting and reorganising.
Hopefully, today will be my kick start back into writing!
I’m working on sending a submission to Horror Tree under the headline Ghosts on Drugs. A nasty bout of depression which stole my motivation, which meant I missed the deadline for my novel. The computer is a bit of a scary place now, it’s a place where I fail to write my novel. My laptop is fine. It doesn’t judge me. I’ve not taken a lot of drugs…
I’ve not taken a lot of drugs…actually, that’s not quite right. I have not taken many drugs which were not prescribed . For the past three or four years, I have taken medication every day. 150mg Sertraline in the morning and zopiclone to help me sleep. Eating the right amount of food and recovering some form of mental stability has meant I’ve weaned myself off the zopiclone. Oh and let’s not forget the Symbicort and salbutamol for my Asthma.
The dreaded message came with my latest lot of subscriptions Please make an appointment with GP for medication Review. It shouldn’t have been a surprise, but it sure as hell hit me like one. Right now I’m avoiding the whole thing until after my driving test.
back to the story, if you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time you’ll be aware that I suffer from depression, anxiety alongside an eating disorder. For my ghosts on drugs submission, I will enter the mind of a protagonist who is struggling with depression.
Should I be writing things that could be potentially triggering? It’s great to promote understanding but I know it can also send those suffering from similar conditions into a downward spiral. It feels wrong shying away from such issues. I am not writing in any gratuitous way, simply writing from a point of view of a girl who is depressed. The point of view I know best! One thing I can say is that the first line in my story lays out the premise of my story.
By the time I realized I was off my meds I’d already been dead for a week.
Today’s word count: 685
I now have a couple of months in which to edit my first 10,000 words. Reading back over my previous revisions I realised it was a little dull. The information is there, laid out in a concise effective manner. The world has magical aspects but the wonder of that magic has been lost. Today I spent time re-writing the first paragraph. I went to it with fresh eyes and no pressure.
I absolutely love what I’ve written.
Todays word count: 180
Today feels better than yesterday. I survived social pressures of the dedication service and managed to leave relatively unscathed by well meaning relatives. I find it increasingly difficult to reply to the question how are you. particularly when i am not doing great. I tend to reply with a non-specific, ‘I’m doing ok thanks.’
It’s not a lie and certainly, or at least not a bit one. The only problem is, people want more. I’ve got nothing else to give.
Pressure is listing off me slowly. I’m hoping life will return to some semblance of normality soon. I need rest, time and a lot of space.
I’ve been feeling pretty guilty about not working on my novel or going running. I’ve not been eating as much as I should and it’s been effecting my energy levels badly.
I am trying to stop thinking about the things I have not done and focusing on the things I have done. In started with writing a post about all the items of clothing I have made so far. it was a lot of fun. Tomorrow I will write a small to do list. One which I will complete easily.
Today’s word count: 1200
I’m struggling. with writing, with sewing, with socialising. I’m even finding it difficult to get out of bed in the morning. I’ve managed to do bits of writing, but it’s the bare minimum.
I feel sad. A heavy, tiring sadness. The melancholy is punctuated by moments of happiness. Today I saw my niece who spent the first ten minutes smiling at me and nuzzling my head with hers.
The happiness carried an undertone. We were spending the afternoon making decorations for my niece’s dedication on Sunday. I’m feeling pretty stressed about the day. I am going to the ceremony, and staying for tea and cakes afterwards. This will be a stressful event as there will be a lot of people there, most of whom I don’t know.
My sister invited me to a big family meal afterwards. There will be at least thirty people there, though I have been able to go out for food with friends, a big occasion with so many people and an unfamiliar restaurant will just be too much. I had to say no for my mental health.
It’s really really difficult making these kinds of decisions. I know my sister is disappointed. I’m trying very hard not to feel too bad about myself. The guilt is pretty overwhelming.
That day is also the only time I can see my father-in-law, for his birthday, before he goes on holiday. I know the morning will be difficult and tiring. I don’t know if I’ll even be able to make it out the house again to see him. I feel like I’ll be betraying my sister if I do anything at all. guilt piled on guilt. I’ve been trying to do couch to 5k. I had scheduled to go out for a run this evening but couldn’t move from the sofa when I got home.
Guilt piled upon guilt. I’ve been trying to do couch to 5k. I had scheduled to go out for a run this evening but couldn’t move from the sofa when I got home.
Another small niggle which seems to be triggering my eating disorder issues is skipping out on a run. I’ve recently felt well enough to start exercising again and have been trying to do Couch to 5k. I had scheduled to go out for a run this evening but, rather fittingly, couldn’t move from the couch when I got home.
So there’s my post. It’s miserable because I’m miserable. Here’s to a less miserable week.
Today’s word count: 500
I Spent today revising my flash fiction down from 900 to 500. The first 200 words were easy. it began to get a little trickier after that. I think I’m happy with the result. I’m not sure if the story is any good, but my husband liked it so that’s something. My main motivation for submitting a piece of writing every month is not necessarily to get myself published, but form more habits and to lose some of the fear of sending off my work. Though winning a competition would be lovely.
Today I wrote the second scene in a chapter. It’s far from perfect but I’m relatively happy with it. I still need to get to know this character a little more to be happy with the writing. I’ve got the substance done now, it’s just the style I want to work on. I find it incredibly difficult to leave a section alone. However I know if I keep trying to edit throughout this draft I will never actually have a completed novel.
That being said, I managed to spend most of the day avoiding writing. I even sent boring work emails and tidied before sitting down at my computer. It was six o’clock by the time I actually began writing. I honestly do not understand why my brain does this to me. I love writing, I hate tidying.
In reality there is a simple explanation.
I feel pressure to write.
Because I feel pressure I will avoid thinking about writing and hope the words will magically appear
Avoidance can only last so long.
The end of the day nears and words I realise the words have not magically appeared.
I feel guilty and tired. I then avoid thinking about my novel some more.
Today I managed to break that cycle by actually writing before it got too late. it feels good to have gotten a little down. It would be a lot easier if I could have done this earlier in the day. It’s pretty exhausted avoiding things all day. It makes my stomach hurt.
I have been a little wobbly over the past couple of days and every little ‘failure’ has felt overwhelming. I did not go into work today. The day in has helped me feel a little more centred and in control. Handily I received my Buddy Box the other day which has lots of lovely helpful bits in it. Also a couple of friends have sent me really lovely messages.
Thanks for reading, it helps me feel less alone.
Today’s Word count: 674