John Walker's Electronic House

by on Dec.10, 2004, under The Rest

Hello you lot.

I’ve been fairly absent really, despite faffing around with colourful archives. The truth is, that’s been easier to do than to write the blog. And I’m wondering if that’s hypocritical of me.

Blogs, as I’ve said many times, are an exercise in ego. They are the manifestation of the desire to be noticed. This isn’t a negative. If a blog is entertaining for someone to read, then it is surely a positive. But it’s folly to pretend that the motivation of the writer is anything else. But the nature of this kind of blog (as opposed to information resources, or fictional blogs) is that they are also walking a fine line between sharing personal information and deliberately attempting to entertain. Combining the two can be extremely risky, and it’s something I’ve enjoyed doing. The rants I’ve written tend to be rants I’ve been having with friends. The oh-so-hilarious rambling observations will have been about something that’s been on my mind that day or recently. And the reports of things that have happened are even more obvious.

So when what’s happening is really tough, I have no idea what to write. I was entertained a couple of days ago by the notion of attempting to write something funny despite feeling incredibly low. I didn’t do it, but the challenge amused me. What stops me is a desire to be real – to share truth on this, no matter how trivial. I want to write honestly, and when the honesty I have is too private or too difficult, I appear to only clam up.

So I’m going to share a thing that’s been happening. I’ve now deleted about four attempts at a sentence explaining the inherent weirdness of not knowing a lot of the people reading, but each time it descends into introspective bogwash.

I have what we in the medical profession call an Anxiety Disorder. This means that I am not able to control my anxiety, and regular, ordinary things that can normally be dealt with sensibly cause me to escalate into emotional explosions and panic attacks. These are pretty scary. I’ve had these for about six years, on and off, normally in phases of a few months. At the moment I’m about as bad as I’ve ever been, which would be the first time six years ago.

The reason I’m sharing this is a sensible one. I’m not the only one. I’m especially not the only one who hasn’t done anything about it for the last half-decade. And it took someone else making me (and I really mean making me) admit that it wasn’t a way to live and go to the doctor to have me do anything about it. Because I’ve always felt like I should be able to cope with things, and that I can’t is my failure. Not true.

It’s damaging. It’s hurt me too many times, and it’s just hurt me again.

But this is a positive post. Yes, it’s painfully self-exposing and improperly personal. But we’ve already established that’s a reality of blogs. I’m doing something about it, and it will get sorted out.

I guess I’m saying, if this is hinting at you to do something about it, do it.

That’s enough of all that.

3 Comments for this entry

  • Tim R

    You probably won’t get many posts about this, whereas it is easier to respond if you rant about copyleft, or even if you tell us you’re down to 15 stones. You will receive few comments because we are all a bit embarrassed about what to say in response to this, just as you are a bit embarrassed saying that your panic attacks are not normal, and that you have come to admit you need help. So, for my part, the silence that I am rigorously maintaining (notice?) is one of trying to understand, probably failing, and then respecting you, all in a very manly way (probably with a deep voice). That said, I sort of expect Kieron to swear now.

  • Tom Camfield

    You are Tony Soprano, and I claim my ten pounds.

    Good luck with your treatment, guy.

  • MHW

    I don’t think I’m capable of writing a supportive response that doesn’t seem glib or patronising.

    Pretend I am that capable, and that this comment sounds supportive and understanding.

    You’re not the only mental in this world.