Aslan is on the move. At least it looks that way. It’s sunny, there is little wind, buds are starting to open on the branches and a thrush is singing throatily outside my window.
The return of Spring would bring hope to any sad heart, any but mine that is.
Lots of people say they get ‘depressed’ in Winter, but depression is not brought on or ruled by the seasons, a bad hair day or a duff scratch card.
Only the really fucked up feel worse come Spring.
In Autumn and Winter when the weather is harsh, the temperature is cold and the days are short, people tend to eschew invitations, hurry home, hunker down with their families and hibernate, fortifying themselves with slow cooked casseroles, home made soups and hot toddies.
So whilst they’re not in the room with me and (the majority) are not alone, I sense their presence behind each brightly lit window glowing in the dark and feel less of an outcast, and more of a kinship, hence less alone. So whilst rain and sleet lash my windows, the winds howl, and the skies darken late afternoon, I huddle by the fire, with a mug of hot tea and a warm cat, and kid myself that I am ‘normal’, the same as everyone else.
Spring and Summer are a different matter. The nights are lighter, the air warmer, spirits rise and everyone feels a lot more sociable. So at the first sign of good weather, out come the people, off come the layers and almost overnight the streets, pubs and parks are filled with happy families, picnicking pals, smooching couples, barking dogs and shrieking kids.
I have no place in this world. I feel more of an outcast and less like a human being than ever before. And when I go outside I squint in the bright sunshine (or hide behind sunglasses – I’m photosensitive) and feel like I have ALONE! UNLOVED! tattooed on my forehead. And whilst the sun may darken my skin, I have the aura of grey, rain dashed slate, and the stance and bearing of an apologetic, whipped, homeless dog.
Or worse than that, I feel transparent, almost invisible like a ghost that has only just realised that she is dead and is resolutely stuck in this place and time with no one to haunt until someone says otherwise.
My situation is of my own making; I can’t blame anyone else for my anti social ways, my mainly geographically distant friends, or lack of partner, but these are the days that it hurts so much to be alive.
The only solution is to get out there, do some serious socialising leg work and make new friends. But it seems like an impossible task. How can I present the way I am now and expect people to befriend me? All of my real friends that have stayed knew me before I got this ill, so have seen me at my best, and know that the times I’m on form are worth enduring the dark days for, but they have jobs, kids, lives of their own and cannot be with me 24/7.
But to attempt to make new friends right now is as intimidating as having to apply for a job, put on an act and pretend to be someone I’m not in order to get it. Something else that looms over me and my future….
I don’t have answers, I don’t ask for pity.
I just have to say it. Share it. Because the truth, no matter how terrible, when spoken out or written down is somehow downgraded from a cold endless ache in your heart to a lump in your throat, and in the hierarchy of symptoms this gives me hope that it is working its way to the surface of this battered old body, and will someday leave me for good, leaving only serenity, wisdom and if not gratitude then an acceptance and appreciation for the things I do have than a mourning for what is absent.
Holding out for the love of the one magician.
Whenever you’re ready Friend.