An Update

I thought it time to let you know how I’ve been doing since the release of ‘Tesserae’. I do not wish for this to be a long update… we shall see how it goes.

This particular episode of depression is a lingering one. Its nails have been deeply embedded in my body, dragging me down with its negativity and unfathomable despair since November last year. It has removed the joy from the things I love the most. It has held me hostage in my own head.

Since the album release I have visited the local mental health crisis team where I was told, as I seemed intelligent, that I should just “get myself together”. The antidepressant I was taking was causing violent panic attacks, hallucinations and the most vivid dreams I have ever experienced. I was advised to stop taking antidepressants all together by the psychiatric nurse and was informed he’d write to my GP and recommend an online course of CBT.

He never wrote to my GP. The weeks following the crisis team appointment were incredibly difficult and, in the early hours one morning, I attempted to take my own life. I play it down thinking it’s not that big a deal… I didn’t try very hard… but I tried. I got to a point where the thought of spending another second on this planet was too much. Another trip to my GP and she finally referred me to the online CBT (which I am yet to receive my log in details for). My GP is a good one and I’m glad to have her. If I need, we might try a different antidepressant before ruling them out completely.

Now that I am medication free my moods have gone back to being erratic which is exhausting. The highs and lows are extreme however the constant feeling of hopelessness/despair/anger accompany both swings of mood. There is no escaping. I feel I have returned to the state I was in when I first went to the doctor in January.

I have lost friends because of the depression. I have lost work. I have been unable to leave the house without breaking into a panic. I have become weary of the health system that is supposed to support me. I feel like a burden to my wife who is trying her best to keep things going.

I know that I am not a burden. Those words are spoken by the illness. Sometimes it is hard not to believe them.

Right now my wife and I are looking into gaining some funding so I can attend private counselling that isn’t just for stress relief. We’re looking into free counselling too but might need something sooner if the waiting lists are long. I am feeling desperate. I need help.

Yesterday I managed to go to the corner shop by myself. A small yet incredibly huge step. The anxiety sweats were significant but I did it. Yesterday, for a moment, was a good day.

I would like to thank everyone who has supported my music and my art these past few months. I would especially like to thank those of my friends and family who have stuck by me, given me and my wife their time, offered their homes, sent me flowers and care packages. It means so much to me that you give a shit. Thank you.

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