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Mental Health Track 024

I’m not sure I know what day it is… Must be Sunday. I’ve definitely had some sleep, though I’m not certain how much, and it was spiced with weird fragments of people I used to know and places I may never have been. This weekend we’re away with most of my family, which is really lovely. It has however, thrown all possible dedication to my cultivated routine into the bin, and I’ve woken up confused and feeling rather stoned. I’m sure tea and coffee will assist in regaining some measure of balance. Confusing bedtimes, getting up at the wrong time, taking too much amitriptyline to make sure I get enough sleep to enjoy being with everyone, unfamiliar bed… It always feels quite petty (to me at least) when I’m thrown by a bed that doesn’t feel right, pillows that aren’t mine. It’s a tiny bit frustrating to have my equilibrium on such a perilously narrow edge, all too easily nudged off either side. Still, my brother’s making breakfast so it isn’t all bad. I’ve also just made some searingly strong cafetiere coffee (aiming to replace my customary triple espresso), and it’s pretty good. York Emporium’s mocha java blend. I wonder if they make one for espresso machines.

What to report? A reminder from yesterday that being with family is nice. They’re the people who have known me for longest, probably know me best, and whose presence is like falling into every moment of the past simultaneously. Reassuring, easy and comforting. I continue to be impressed by my siblings, both of whom always seem much more together and balanced than I feel, though of course that’s just a surface impression. Inside, everyone is a screaming ball of terror resisting the approach of the void. I guess it’s very similar to the feeling of being with the best of friends, enjoying conversation that can drift in moments from utter nonsense to deeply serious, with no fear that I’m going to say something so appalling that they’ll just walk away. Yet. I am, of course, testing those limits constantly – this is the joy of nieces.

An all-metal cafetiere is a strange thing. I cannot see whether there is coffee left in it. Who would design such a thing? Thankfully its contents are washing away the lag, my skin feels less like its drifting upwards to the surface while my bones drag me under, although it does look like someone’s taken a die-stamp to my eye sockets. I reckon I’m going to embrace giving up the routine tonight and tomorrow morning too. I don’t know how to adapt it yet to being in different places, and while that’s a spear of stress jabbed right through me, and although probably with the group of people most likely to tolerate completely falling apart for a day, it’s a vulnerability and distraction from why we’re here which would be selfish to indulge. So Monday night will be a reset I think. Rather than continue and drop to zero amitriptyline, I’m going to stick with one and see how it goes. We’re away next weekend too, but since it’s just the two of us I should be able to manage some hybrid routine. This part at least, the scribbling is easy to do anywhere. And it’s helping. Like one of Dali’s atomic phase paintings in reverse, I can feel chunks of imaginary brain and bone congealing once more into the physical representation of whatever it is that makes me into me.

Mental Health Track

A purposeful daily attempt to track how I feel and what I’m doing.

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