Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Under Imaginary Pressure



Everything was pretty good. Well, it still is but last weekend was really good. Two more episodes of our popular (when compared to herpies) podcast OFF THE RADAR are in the editing suite and despite an ill-planned trip to a car hire shop good progress has been made with our holiday to France.  Earlier this week I even broached the subject of my mental health with my line manager who saw that I was on 40mg per day of Fluoxetine (also known as Prozac) and that she knew of people on them too. Perhaps this could be offered as evidence that the stigma of mental health is but a veil and underneath it we all have some understanding which we should mean we have no reason to be embarrassed or wary.

Last Thursday I had a telephone appointment with someone from the Berkshire Mental Health Services Team who had obviously read notes from previous ‘interviews’ as he asked some very well worded and relevant questions. After around 30 minutes he said that my case would be discussed within a team and then it would be taken from there, but 6 days on and I have not heard anything as yet. Some of the questions were to rule out other conditions for example whether I had other voices than my own in my head or if I was scared of the knives in my kitchen drawer.

Part of me wants to make light of this and can see the comedy potential: perhaps life would be more fun if my cutlery did  foxtrot across the stove. At the same time, mental health is a serious condition. Avid followers on my instagram will have seen the recent The Sun newspaper cutting with the story of how suicide is the highest cause of death of males in my age group. “Comedy can be a cathartic way to deal with personal trauma”  is a quote attributed to the late Robin Williams however I also find it can be a way of putting the other person at ease. By making a joke suddenly there is no awkwardness in the conversation and having a laugh can be good fun.

What I am struggling to find any humour in is the nervous feeling that’s been hovering around me. I first noticed it yesterday when my leg was twitching. This isn’t new per se but I normally do it when hyper or stressed or dosed up on my favourite brand of energy drinks. Then at home I just started to feel on edge. Despite feeling tired I found it hard to go asleep and when I did sleep, it wasn’t as deep or long as I would normally enjoy – if you know what I mean ;).  Remember that feeling outside the headteacher’s room when you called a classmate a ‘bitch’ because she used a ruler without your permission (true story!) or the butterflies of confronting an angry customer in your first job? I have nothing to be worrying about, nothing new anyway, and yet here I am leg twitching, wrapping myself in my coat. My big sister, Claire, had a quick research into my medication and anxiety is a documented side-effect which is a bummer. I’ve been really enjoying being quite good and relatively level with a few ups but why can’t I have anything nice?

And the worst side-effect of any mental health conditions is: is this me or is it the condition? Should I be worrying about not hearing from the Berkshire Mental Health team or is it just being anxious?
It is actually quite scary living life at stressed out red alert speed.
“Quick, we’re running out of time!!” “We’ve got to complete the bucket list now”
“Get me dolphin!” “quick quick, will room service have one? Dolphin, bath tub, swim QUICKLY!”

So if anyone wants to hold me and gently rock me to sleep or could go through some mediation techniques with me, then perhaps I can chill out….

Deeeep breaths….

Finally, we have a new segment on our comedy podcast; OffThe Radar. It doesn’t have a name as such mainly because it’s shit but it is soo shit it is good fun – like Eurovision or your face*. In this segment Mr Lee Hall and Mr Aidan Parr dictate a message to an unsuspecting member of Match.com. So if you have received a rather silly message from me – please do reply and play along and please accept my apologies if it has scared you off in anyway.
Perhaps it won’t surprise you to know that to date we have sent two messages and received zero replies.

What message would you send using my Match.com profile? What methods do you use to chillax? Let me know in the comments below.

Be good, have fun and goodbyeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeEEeeEeeeEeee


*LOL, burns unit!