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Monday, 17 July 2017

Free Puppy Cuddles For Anyone Who Reads This...

And now that I have your attention... Hi there. Welcome back. Been a long time. Yadda yadda yadda. Whatever. Read on.

Main thing to say is, there will be some changes to this blog in future.

To explain, there came a point a while back when I realized that writing - of any kind - was not doing my mental health one blind bit of good. I brought out a couple collections of short stories and The Horseman's Daughter, but it still wasn't working. Although I did enjoy writing the latter at the time, there was none of the ongoing joy, the escape, that writing had once brought me. Quite the opposite, in fact. So I stopped. Walked away. Did other things. Concentrated on what was important to me, and to my mental health.

I've had mental health issues for a long time. I have experienced - and continue to do so at varying times and to varying degrees - depression, anxiety, panic, and agoraphobia. I have come so close to suicidal it has been scary. I've had periods of depression so bad that I have spent hours just sitting on the couch, staring into space and crying for no damned good reason that I could fathom, unable to conjure even the slightest interest or care in most things. At these times the only thing which has kept me going has been my dog and the kind of unending, unconditional love that a dog can bring to your life. When I could not raise a smile for anything or anyone else, The Dog, by simply nudging my cheek with her nose and sitting quietly beside me, could bring a genuine smile and flicker of actual happiness to my otherwise apparently frozen heart. All the same, I refuse to use the word suffer in regard to this because the degree of suffering varies so much, as anyone with these issues can tell you. There are good days, bad days, good months, bad months, good years, bad years...sometimes there are good and bad hours in a single fucking day ( no, my use of occasional 'language' on this blog won't change - for fuck's sake don't expect miracles! )...and even at its worst you aren't always actively 'suffering', although sometimes you are - Christ, it's complicated, okay? So, suffer is not the right word, not for me. If I find the right word, I'll let you know...'endure' perhaps?

Anyway, doing other things has helped...with my mental health anyway. Inspiration to write, well, maybe not so much. Yet. It's getting there. Slowly. Very slowly. But I've learned to stop pushing for something that isn't ready to be yet. Doing that just increases anxiety, and increased anxiety leads to more depression, and around and around we unhappily go. Instead I have enjoyed becoming able to do other things - spend time among other people, get on a ferry to one of the many gorgeous Outer Isles in Orkney, learn new skills. And in doing these things and just enjoying them for the sake of themselves, I also find a certain creative inspiration. Perhaps not for anything that can be written right now, but for future writing. The desire to write is still there, the urge to act upon that desire is just not fully present yet.

So, back to the changes in this blog.

There will be posts about mental health. If you don't like that idea, well, fuck off right now, please and thank you.

There will be posts about Orkney. If you don't like that idea, well, fuck off right now, please and thank you.

There will be humor and sometimes swearing. And other random shit I may feel like. If you don't like that idea...you know the rest. Don't fucking make me repeat myself!

Now and again I may post something related to writing - however vaguely so - and you can be sure those posts will be particularly liberally peppered with salty language.

And finally, I will post whenever I feel like it. That may be three days from now, or three months from now. Whatever. Meantime, enjoy the new background design. That's Hoy, by the way. Taken from Warbeth, Stromness, on a fine but stormy afternoon late in the year. I may change the background from time to time. One of those new skills that I have learned... yay me, eh?

Oh yeah, many ( but completely insincere ) apologies for the 'free puppy cuddles' thing... I lied about that. In case you hadn't figured that out already. If not, what kind of fucking moron are you???

So no puppies...but here is The Dog. Count yourselves lucky for this much.

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