This is a blog about me…again. Its not a wild camping one but has some good pics so feel free to skip the text! It’s about my messy head and anxiety! Again 🙂
It’s a strange thing, lying in bed in a haze of opiate drugs, desperate for the pain to subside and give me some respite. At the same time, my head plays massive games with me. The trouble with anxiety (particularly) is that when you’re lying here your head wants to f**k you over. I feel massive guilt… this is how the scenario goes.
Question: What must the team think?
Answer – they all think you’re skiving and are at home or out on the hill and that you’re too lazy to be at work.
Question: What must my boss think?
Answer – He and the other Directors are thinking of ways to get rid of you because you’re shit at your job.
Question: What must your friends think ?
Answer – You’re always moaning about being in pain and anxious, they’re only friends with you because they feel sorry for you.
Yep, that’s how it goes…. every time.
And the bizarre thing is that no amount of reassurance gets rid of these thoughts. My team and my friends and my bosses are all awesome people. Many have been through similar issues to one degree or another, therefore I know they understand in some ways. That doesn’t stop the questions.
I worry that a lot of people think my problems with my back are self-inflicted. They aren’t…
Yes, I slipped on the hill on Thursday and that is the reason I am now in bed with a head full of shit but if I don’t keep getting up and going to work or going on the hill or underground then what have I got. I’ll tell you what I’ve got – Jeremy Kyle and Judge Rinder! That’s what I have to look forward to. If anything is going to make you depressed then that should do it!
It’s the saying “use it or lose it” that is most relevant with my “condition”. If I stop doing what I do then it will become more of a problem. I guess I am guilty doing too much at times or pushing myself a bit harder than I should but I guess it’s my choice on the day. I’ve never called in sick because I had too much of an arduous day underground. Sadly, with being into the outdoors in a big way means that there are times when you might hurt yourself… Slipping the other day was one of those moment’s. And for me a simple slip is a bit more of an issue then if I didn’t have a bad back.
One of the things that a lot of people don’t understand and a question I feel gets asked a lot about my anxiety is “How come you can go underground and into the mountains alone if you have anxiety?”
To a large percentage of the population that is nuts and backwards. To most people that in itself would be enough to cause huge anxiety. I can’t go into a busy café but I can dangle off a rope in a disused mine in the pitch black surrounded by hazards or sleep on a mountain in the pitch black, totally alone with the wind howling and snow swirling around my head…Yep, that’s how it is.
Underground and on the hill, are my safe spaces. Busy places are my worst nightmare and not being able to do “normal” everyday stuff is a real issue at times but they are manageable because in normal everyday life you have to do the things that you maybe find uncomfortable. A friend suggested that getting my shopping delivered maybe a good idea so I don’t have to go to the supermarket (aka HELL), this in theory is fine but it is also the start of a dangerous path… As soon as you start the road to not getting out of your comfort zone you could end up really isolating yourself. Carrying on as normally as possible is the right way to go about things.
The thing is that the things I do focus my mind so there is no room for anything else; especially the vertical stuff underground. I am totally focussed on my surrounding and the dangers as there is no room for mistakes. The same with bivvying in winter; you need to stay focussed. However, in the supermarket there is lots of time to concentrate on feeling anxious. Finding the Lurpak and Felix doesn’t quite have the same focussing qualities as “tie the right knot or you’ll fall 30 metres to an untimely and painful death!”.
Photography is also a good focus. I’m not very good at it but I like to try and get good shots. This is also a massive focus as you are absorbed by the technicalities of it. (also avoiding frostbite and not falling down things plays a part!)
I’ve said it before and I’ll be super boring and repeat myself, we are a product of our past. There are a lot of things that happen to us that change our mindset from being carefree and level to careworn and wobbly! It’s actually ok to be the latter so long as you can manage it. When you feel it all getting too much to deal with then you have to assess things before its gets beyond the point where you can sort it out alone. And even then, it’s cool to ask for help because despite what you think people are thinking about you, they probably aren’t, and they do want to support you!
So, there you have it. Another instalment of Kates messed up mental head.