Looking after my wife is a big part of my world, and being healthy allows me to be there for her.
Cycling to a pub, or a cafe with friends also helps me cope. For a short time, I'm leading a normal life.
At times it feels like I'm on pause, waiting for the next task. I can't commit to anything, or relax.
So when I do get some time for myself I need to make it count. But then: it rains, I am unwell, joint plans are changed, or a bike lets me down.
I'm left with a hole I can't fill, and reality comes back into focus.
It's nobody's fault, plans change, the British weather is unpredictable. Maybe I can do something about the bikes, clean them more often, let Ross check them over regularly.
I don't think people realise the self induced stress I feel. How could they? I don't say anything.
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and mindfullness sessions have helped. They gave me a perspective that I had lost.
It was exhausting; depression caused me to be angry most of the time. Insomnia made it worse; I still don't get enough sleep. But at least I don't loose a whole night. When I started cycling regularly my sleeping improved. From the moment I get up though; I look forward to going back to bed. I never remember dreams; so for me, sleep is a time when I'm not depressed.
It was also a personal interpretation of a prayer I had read many times that saw me turn a corner. I'm not a religious person, for me it says I don't need to fix or resolve every problem. And not to worry about problems that can't be resolved straight away, or ever.
It goes on:
I don't believe He will make things better, it's my life; only I can can do that.
Social media isn't helpful, there is so much negativity. I rarely get involved in commenting about posts. And if people or groups I follow become part of the problem, then it's goodbye to them.
It's very easy to become overwhelmed, I still am at times. But now I take one day at a time, and prioritise what I deal with.
I have started to conquered my depression.
The best lesson I have learnt. Take control: make decisions, even little ones. It will mean you have made a change, and know more about a situation or problem than you did.
Another is to talk, I'm no good at this one. The therapy sessions are over; who do I speak to? I don't want to be a burden, or worry people. I'm not even sure why I'm writing this.
The good thing is that I have family and friends whom I know are there for me.
Maybe if it helps someone else, that will have been reason enough.