Over the past month I’ve had a string of illnesses or depressive episodes or other issues in a lovely polite line, each waiting until the one before is done before politely tapping me on the shoulder and saying “Now what about me?” None of them have been all that serious, but they just haven’t stopped. And now they have. And it’s oh so quiet. And that’s lovely.
The most recent of these has been finally getting my wisdom teeth out. They came up wrong somewhere in the region of five years ago, and I figured they weren’t too bad and just left them be. I have a policy of not messing with my body unless it’s serious. So they just sat there being not-quite-right and I forgave them for it. Eventually, though, I went for a dentists appointment and he commented “Wow, those must be causing you a lot of pain” and I realised that yes, they were. I was just ignoring it because it “wasn’t too bad”. So I got an appointment with a dental surgeon, and after two months of waiting I went in to hospital, was put under general anaesthetic, and had them removed. That was a week ago. I’m now finished the course of painkillers and antibiotics and whatnot and they’re gone. And so is a lot of pain that I hadn’t even realised I had. It’s weird. It’s bizzarre. It’s like there’s something that was in my head that isn’t there anymore. Inside my head is… quiet.
It’s had a knock-on effect on my mood. I guess it has to when you’re suddenly not in pain anymore. Lately I’ve been more able to cope. I’ve been more able to focus. I’ve been more able to relax. I’m still depressed, but I’m not depressed and in pain, and that’s making a huge difference to everything. Yes, I still can’t function without 12 hours sleep out of 24, and I still feel scared at the idea of going to a busy supermarket, all those other problems are still there… but… it’s a bit easier.
So I guess the lesson learned here is not to put up with things that aren’t quite right, or aren’t too bad. It’s easy to think that you’re coping with so much that a little extra stress or pain won’t make difference. It’s easy to think that there’s no point treating something ‘cos you’ll still be depressed so what use will it be. It’s easy to give up on the little bits of happiness because all you can see is the big looming sadness. Don’t do that.
Take care of yourself in every way you can.
Fix everything you can fix. Improve everything you can improve.
Don’t just cope…