Today is a big day in our family life. We are in London to celebrate the promotion of my wife’s sister to becoming a Professor at a University. She has actually been a professor for a while now, but today is the official inauguration talk. We are being taken out for tea before the lecture, then after the lecture we are going out for a meal. Today is about celebrating the success of my sister-in-law and the respect of her peers and acknowledgement of her achievements so far in her academic life. It is good to celebrate but I wonder how many people actually do. When do we do something that is considered worthy of success?
As I fall asleep I try to recall three positive things during the day. I also try to appreciate the reasons why they give me a sense of well-being. This is not a new thing, but a well-researched technique of positive psychology that has been shown to booster one’s self esteem. I didn’t do it last night, but then yesterday wasn’t a standard day.
What I did do before I went to bed was some writing. It was the first chance I had to be by myself after a sleepless night and a train journey to London. I was aware that my head was a mess of thoughts and ideas and I “needed” to write. I wasn’t sure what I needed to write, so I just started with how I was and I chose through my writing one of the things that had been whirling around. As usual it was good to spend some time teasing out the implications of the situation, and I relearned a lesson or two. It was enough to allow me to sleep again.
Sleep for a while at least. A new day and new thoughts to deal with, or not to deal with because I wanted to check something on the internet before I wrote about childhood trauma, revisit a newspaper article, etc. I decide to get up and if nothing else write a list of things that I was thinking about. One of those things was my progress or not with my depression. My fundamental desire is to reconnect with my emotions, and yesterday I wrote a piece on my anger over a comment given by a friend. I was pleased that I had done that article, because it fitted in with my wider goal of emotional intelligence but also because it is symbolic of how I am dealing with my depression. I wondered not for the first time about seeing a counsellor again, and the fact that I am overdue to see my GP too. Am I dealing with my depression (whatever dealing means in this context)?
I am even considering calling myself a writer because now I have a body of “work” to look back over, and I wondered whether it would be useful to have someone to comment on them and perhaps pull out common themes. Would that be a good way of starting with a counsellor? I have written before about how important hope is to me, hope that I can progress and learn to live with my depression. Is this the next stage on my journey? Maybe we shall see.
In the meantime, I will keep writing because now I know I need to. I am also wondering if I need to reduce the amount of input I receive, I have a sense now that too many thoughts triggered by new ideas is painful for me. Is this another aspect of autism coming out? In the meantime, I will celebrate who I am by sharing my thoughts with the internet. It is good to celebrate.