Saturday 18 August 2018

Wow what a day this has been. So many things have happened today I could do many blog posts. All of these things have been good for me, and I hope for the people I have interacted with today. I will cover just a few here in this post.

A warning, I am about to talk about what was a dark episode in my life. If you are, like me, triggered by certain things you may not want to read the next paragraph.

I revealed on Twitter again that I am a suicide attempt survivor. This prompted a friend to ask how I managed to get to the point where I attempted to take my life. I was happy to explain the circumstances up to a point. There are only three people who know the final reason why I attempted suicide, and none of these people are in my immediate family. That may surprise some people. Why wouldn’t I share it with my immediate family? My family, friends, colleagues all know about my mental illnesses and how I struggle each day and how I cope. I have some very close friends on Twitter and off. Several times over the years I have learnt to call on these wonderful people on my bad days. Anyway, that is getting way from what I was going to talk about.

I am having a holiday to Melbourne in October. Today I finally got up the nerve to call a beautiful lady in Melbourne to arrange a tryst while I am there. I have met this lady a few times before but this time I had a special request and I was very nervous about broaching this with her. I am not going to go into details about the request, it is a bit personal and I am not ready to be public about it. Of course I shouldn’t have been worried. This gorgeous lady made my day by totally understanding my request and hesitations. Needless to say I am very much looking forward to visiting Melbourne.

What else happened today. Had the best conversation with my mum today. Yesterday I noticed a missed call from my dad. By the time I remembered to call back it was too late at night. So I called today and mum answered the phone. It turns out that yesterday it was my mum calling but she was actually trying to call my sister, lol. My mum suffers from dementia but we have the best conversations.As we talk and I ask questions mum always relays my question to dad who then gives her the answer to give back to me. Mum knows she has dementia and has also fully come to terms with the fact that she cannot remember a lot of things. We laugh about it and have great chats.

Next…Went clothes shopping with my son (22). He is starting to venture out and decided to go on a trip to Melbourne and we decided to update his wardrobe. A lot of fun clothes shopping for a man. During my life I have spent many years living with my sisters and so I have become quite proficient clothes shopping for women. So clothes shopping for an adult man, other than myself, was different for me. Good times.

Finally for this post…I found my voice on Twitter again. I have been a bit quiet on Twitter for a while. Today however I started interacting with lots of people again. Had some great conversations, both public and private. Tweeted my first poll tweets (and yes I am crushing about someone on Twitter at the moment). I have been able to take control of my timeline without worrying about what others may feel. Yes I understand that there may be consequences I have to deal with and I will do that if the need arises.

Eccles/Barliman
A man who is feeling good

Sorry for any spelling or grammar errors, I’ve had a few whiskeys

The battle continues…

I started this post on the afternoon of 23 January. I write as a way of getting out of a crash. A lot of the time I do not publish my writings. You will see it has been over a year since I published anything. I spent the year feeling that my problems were too insignificant for other people to want to know about. A good friend has asked me to publish this, so here we go…

I lay in bed this morning rolled up in a ball wondering if a fall from the fourth floor would be enough. If I get out of bed will I cope, will I survive.

How did I get here? Last night finished so well. I had confirmed a date with a special lady 😊😊 which I am very excited about. We have started exploring what is to me a new facet to sensuality and intimacy. I may expound on this later.

But this morning, what has happened? What triggered this episode?

I don’t usually say this but I am good at my job, damn good at my job. And for the past 11 years I have been teaching myself how to not take criticism personally. I try now to look at criticism as an opportunity to make myself better at my work and as a person. And I am succeeding at being able to take criticism/comments/suggestions/feedback/etc. It hasn’t flustered me for a very long time now. I can look at the feedback and learn from it and move forward.

The current project has a tight time frame and if we do not get it right may adversely affect a disadvantaged and vulnerable sector of the community. I have read the legislation, perused the rules, analysed the different options and now believe we/I are able to provide a fit for purpose tool for helping make good decisions. This week we are getting ready to start development on the tool in earnest. So all was going well. What happened? One persona few levels up in management said something in a meeting that threw me.

“I bet you can’t do what we need.”

Seems fairly innocent. The comment wasn’t even aimed at me, I wasn’t at the meeting (apparently the meeting was above my pay grade). When the comment was relayed to me an interesting thing happened. Every single insecurity in my life started flooding into my mind. That was me gone for the rest of the day. I went home, had dinner and went to bed.

Do you think I could sleep? Not likely. In fact I was up for a lot of the night sitting by the loo throwing up. That is one of the physical manifestations of my anxiety. Once I finally felt safe to return to bed I lay there thinking of how I was going to fail.

The alarm goes off but I am rolled up in a ball not wanting to get out of bed. Eventually I roll over get out of bed, get dressed and head to the doctor’s and sit in the waiting room waiting for some free time. This is the first time I have turned up without an appointment. He saw me almost straight away. Thank you to the person who said I could go in in front of them. We chatted. It only took 10 minutes and I was off to work, still shaky, but with a promise I could call him whenever I wanted.

What really made me okay that day? A number of things. My doctor willing to listen. My colleagues who know about and understand the struggle I have. But mostly my Twitter friends. Here is a group of people who I can talk to without fear of judgement. I have said this before, I owe my life to my Twitter friends. They listen, they don’t judge, they cry with me and laugh with me.

I am going to stop there. I need to get ready for a date…

Out on my own

I’m out on my own this Sunday afternoon. The family is home; they are not well. So I am out doing the shopping. But of course I have stopped by the coffee shop for a few minutes of calmness. I look around to see what is happening in this tiny corner of the world.

There is a single man at the table in front. It was presumptuous of me to assume he is single, I based that solely on the fact he has no wedding ring on. What is he doing here by himself.  Is he like me looking for a bit of calm from his life? His interactions with his phone tell me he is on social media. He is readily g posts and every now and then types a comment or reply.

A family is at the other end of the marquee. Dad reads a newspaper while mum and daughter are busy typing on their phones.

A couple just a little bit older than me are sitting side by side, talking, smiling, holding hands while drinking coffee.

A very young couple, late teens, are in the corner. They are nervous while they chat. Is this a first date? Will this blossom into romance and a long relationship? Maybe they will be back here in later years holding hands, smiling and talking.

The baristas are behind the coffee machine. They finally have a break from coffee making. They stand and talk. I wonder what they talk about. It has been a.long week for them. I have seen them here the last seven days. But their break is quickly interrupted as more coffee needs to be artfully created.

My coffee is finished. Should I go back to the other world where I am a husband and a dad? Yes, yes I will.

A day off

So what’s happening today. Well this month I have Thursday off work. I am currently sitting at the side walk cafe with a coffee checking the twitter feed and trying not to think about the trip to Melbourne. Oh, I’m also blogging. And I have an hour and a half before I meet a friend here for a “catch up”.

I’m sort of not looking forward to catching up with John. Don’t get me wrong, John is a really good friend and he is one of three close friends who knew about my illness before I made it public. I haven’t seen John for many months and being the person I am I started to wonder why he wants to catch up. My psychologist calls this “fortune telling”. I don’t know why John wants to catch up so I am making up all sorts of different scenarios about how the catch up is going to go.

You may have read in my previous blog posts that I have been a Christian for over thirty years and that I have given up the faith this year. It’s a decision I am happy with. It’s a decision I am happy to write about. But I am not ready to talk about this decision with my Christian friends. It is with a bit of fear that I look forward to meeting with John. The fear being that the conversation may move towards my decision to leave the faith. Oh well, go through my exercises; Is there anything to suggest that the catch up will be anything other two friends meeting for coffee? No. So stop thinking the worst.

I just want my Christian friends to accept who I am and the decisions I have made. I don’t want them to try and save me again. I can’t stop them praying for me but please don’t

I am having a coffee with another friend this afternoon. I am looking forward to this catch up. Why? I can’t think of any reason why the conversation wouldn’t be pleasant and non threatening. Is this friend a Christian? No. Do they accept who I am? Yes. Do they judge me? No. This is a friend from my secret twitter life. We will have a coffee, talk about life, talk about websites and try and solve some problems. It will be good time.

I should finish this off before John arrives. Hope everyone has a good day.

A man not at work today,

Eccles

Hi friends

I am back in a different guise. This is not my first blog, but this is now my only blog. If you want to know why I have changed please read the Why? page.

Be prepared when reading my posts. I am not a professional writer and will sometimes just do brain dumps because that is what is easiest at the time. Other times, in fact most of the times, they will be very personal; please respect this and I will respect you back. Because of the personal nature of the posts there will be things revealed about me that some of my friends do not know. If will apologise now if some things disappoint you but this is me, warts and all.

Because of the nature of some of my posts I will be moderating any comments. I do not need or want any nasty stuff going on here.

As you get to know me and my opinions I am happy for you to ask me questions or even ask if you would like me to blog about a particular topic. Some people knit to relax, some cook, some read, I write.

So that’s my first post, short and sweet. Just wanted to say hi. I hope you guys may find some useful posts here.

In this guise I am calling myself Eccles.