I need to apologise to all of my friends for how I’ve been for the past few months. A while ago my mental health took a nosedive, and for a long time getting out of bed was a challenge in itself. Brushing my teeth and changing out of my PJ’s was often practically impossible. My concentration was shattered, my memory lost and my creativity dead. I couldn’t read. I couldn’t write. I could hardly hold a conversation. Going out into the forest took every ounce of strength, and even when I was out there I couldn’t smell the trees, I couldn’t hear the birds, I couldn’t taste the air.
When I performed my poetry on stage, I hardly recognised my own voice. It wasn’t the voice of the strong, proud Northern poet I remembered. I went from producing a few thousand words a day to barely one.
These times were absolute agony for my spirit. Those of you who know me well will know that if I’m not being creative and expressing myself, I’m not truly living.
I had moments of peace. Brief but beautiful moments where I remembered how to laugh, where I could smell the forest, where I could kiss my boyfriend and think of nothing but the magic of our connection. Where I could celebrate my beating heart.
I need to apologise for all the messages I didn’t reply to. I need to apologise for not being a supportive enough friend when you were going through difficult times. I need to apologise to everyone whom I left hanging on and hanging on and hanging on. Please believe me when I say that I wanted nothing more than to reply, than to offer my shoulder, than to give you my ear. But on the days when staying awake past 10am was a feat in itself, replying to messages or getting in touch was like climbing Everest with no oxygen.
A few days ago my Doctor increased the dosage of my medication. I’m once again on the dose I’m familiar with, the dose I was taking before I went cold turkey for the first time since I started taking medication in 2010. Seeing the Dr here in Sweden is expensive, and getting prescriptions is more pricey than in England, but I’m just grateful that I’m able to receive the help I need to be myself, the Katie you know.
Thank you to everyone who hasn’t turned away from me.Thank you to everyone who has been patient. Thank you to everyone who has held open the door of friendship and not closed it when I haven’t been able to step across the threshold.
You probably think that promises from me are nowadays so fickle, but I want you all to know that 2017 will be a year when I will be wholly myself, wholly your friend. x