I started the day with the Bad Mantra (please see previous VERY LONG post), but things got better from there.
It was the first exercise class after a Christmas and New Year break and while I've been doing the exercises at home it was great to get out and do it in a social setting. I've said plenty of times that exercise is proving a magnificent antidepressant and recovery resource. That's multiplied, oh, a million times (I'm exaggerating here, I just needed a number) when it's done in a group. Another vote for returning to tai chi then.
This evening I went to the supermarket with Mag. I usually go alone and - like every bloody other thing I do - I usually do so in a fairly strict routine that allows going to the supermarket to be a between-1pm-and-4pm activity.
"Look at us, out in dark!" Mag said. She's right, it was great. It's a tiny thing that I found incredibly liberating.
My routines have become prisons. They're really limiting me. It can be good to get into a routine - it's accepted as part of recovery from depression - but I'm too far. My routines are ruts and I'm digging my life into ditches.
Mag is much freer than me in this respect (in most respects actually), and she's a good example. I struggle to leave the house at the best of times and darkness is doubly troubling to me. This felt great and I felt freer in it and in myself.
A thousand hurrahs for going to the supermarket after dark! Hopefully such small steps will become embedded and lead to bigger changes.
There's a slight cloud on the horizon. Mag is going away. Just for a couple of days. Mag going away is often a trigger for back sliding or bingeing in bad behaviours. I only ever smoke cannabis when she's away and it's not generally in a very controlled way (though cannabis has never been the problem to me that alcohol was, is and would be).
It's interesting that I'm both dreading and wishing for her departure. I'm dreading it in my darker moods, because I know things might slide. I'm wishing for it because I'm wishing for the challenge of doing better and a possible sense of achievement. I don't get many of them, I want more. And the bad part of me (it wears a bad hat and everything) is looking forward to getting stoned.
When she told me she'd put her plans back from Sunday afternoon to early Monday morning, it was the bad part of me that was most put out. Now, giving it a bit of thought her shorter trip is probably a good thing. A couple of appointments - a tradesman visiting on Monday and a day at the office on Tuesday - will also help me to stay closer to my good self, the one who wants to be fully recovered all the time.
I'll no doubt keep you updated.
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