Friday, 27 February 2009


I thought that it would be a good idea to write a post giving my thoughts on yesterday after a good night's sleep, and I did sleep quite well. It took me a long time to get to the stage where I could go to bed and hope to fall asleep because the adrenalin high lasted until gone midnight, but eventually I closed my eyes and drifted off. I woke about 7am to the brightest day that we have had here in London for quite a while and then turned over and went back to sleep again. I have had a very relaxing day so far (not having to get up early to go to psychotherapy meant no anxiety about that) and have done a little bit of knitting and now find myself ready to reflect on yesterday.

In order to reach the university building from the underground station the easiest route involved walking alongside a lovely park. One of the things that occurred to me as I was walking beside the park yesterday was the contrast on its appearance between the three occasions that I have made the journey. The first was the occasion when 'S' was snowbound at home. On that day the park was covered in snow, there were a few snowmen that could be seen in the distance and the extreme coldness of the day meant that there were very few people about. The second occasion, which was just a few days later, and the scene was completely different. It was raining, and had been raining for a couple of days, with the result that the snow had gone and the only remnants were a few of the largest elements of the snowmen that had been built when the snow was fresh. It was nowhere near as cold, but again the weather meant that few people were about. Who would go out in that terrible weather if they didn't have to? Yesterday, however, was completely different. It may have been quite dull, but it was dry and there were lots of people about. People exercising their dogs, and people exercising themselves. But the biggest difference for me was the carpets of purple, yellow and white crocuses that could be seen dotted around the park and as I walked closer to the university building there was evidence of daffodils whose flowers would be bursting open in the next couple of days. Spring truly does seem to have arrived and it was there for me to see yesterday morning. Perhaps it was that which helped me to arrive with such a sense of calm; something that a few days ago I would not have considered possible.

Being able to look back on how things went yesterday now that the adrenalin has gone has also allowed me to give a lot of thought to my emotions about the event. I was not sure before hand whether I would be able to talk of some of the things without becoming emotional and because of this I had changed my introduction to include an apology in case this happened. I knew that talking about events that had induced profound effects on me at the time that they happened were likely to induce reactions again, albeit less severe. But it didn't happen. While I was talking I knew that I was helping the students in front of me to understand some very important concepts and being able to do this actually made me rather proud of the fact that I could find the strength to do it.

Loopy Kate in a comment yesterday hoped that I would give myself a treat after the event, and 'S' said to me as we were parting that I should have a glass or two of wine because I had earned it. I actually did neither of these things. I did consider opening a bottle of wine when I got home, but realized that the adrenalin high would mean that having a glass or two of wine would not be the treat that it should be. Instead I came home, wrote the post about how the day had gone, enjoyed reading all the blogs that had been updated during the day and wrote a comment or two, and then I just lazed around watching television. It was wonderful; for the first time in ages I hadn't got the thought in the back of my mind that there were important things that I needed to get completed to meet a deadline. No studying to do, nothing that I had to write; my time was my own to do exactly as I wished.

So how am I feeling now? I guess that I am very relaxed, far more so than I have been for a very long time. Extremely proud of myself for yesterday. I performed well and what I had to say was very well received. And happy. I haven't been able to describe myself this way for a very long time, which makes all the effort that I put in to preparing for yesterday worthwhile.

Tonight I am going to have that glass or two of wine and I shall really enjoy it.


Anonymous said...

First off, serious congrats for the lecture!! Wow. I am super impressed. Not just because I know how terrifying that sort of thing can be. But because the topic is far from easy to talk about even under the *best* of circumstances.

I'm v. glad I came across your blog. The way you talk about Depression has such clarity and purpose. That really connects with me for some reason.

Hope the wine rocks your socks ;)

cb said...

Good for you! I hope the wine went down well!

Anonymous said...

Hi! I wrote a long comment here last night only it appeared to dissapear through a virtual black-hole! I wanted to congratulate you on your triumph. It is such a good feeling when these things go well - better even than you imagined. I love the exhausted contentment that comes from having overcome nerves and apprehension and communicating a piece of myself to others.
I also know what you mean about delaying the 'wine' reward. I used to have a glass of wine after a teaching day until I found it took the edge off the euphoria (although that's a bit of a strong term when some days had their frustrations). Now I prefer to come home and enjoy something relaxing or reflective. The wine can always wait another day!
I'm very impressed with your acheivement. I hope you get the opportunity to do it again some day!