Since there`s only a few days of February left, I decided to write a letter to February.
You have probably been one of the most challenging months for me in a long time. That`s okay. You and I both love a challenge every now and then.
I tried a lot of new things in your time. I discovered a new favourite YouTube channel, Sorted Food. I tried new foods, new recipes, some more succesfull than others. I found new places, and tried new ways of vlogging. I started blogging more. So all that was good.
Physically, I went from okay to not-quite-okay and everything in between, though it was mostly limited to the occasional sore throat, some muscle aches, and an upset stomach.
I fell behind on my book reading, but that`s okay. I have several fun books planned for as soon as I finish the current one, which is still The Measure of All Things by Ken Alder.
I did read Alice`s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass, by Lewis Carroll, in between. I wasn`t very fond of the first one, but I did like TtLG. Or at least I liked the first part, where Alice was still sort-of awake. And I liked the poems it started and closed with. But overall, they`re not amongst my favourite books.
There have been several festivals in your time, February. There was Carnaval in this region, which I do tend to avoid (and I did definitely look forward to the Crazy finally ending). It was quickly followed by Valentine`s, which is not a holiday I`m particularly fond of either. To me, these two represented a kind of border. A border between the drab, depressing winter time between the December holidays and the brightness of spring. It made it all the more fitting that I got a job rejection on Valentine`s, allowing me to close off several chapters of my life at once.
Work-wise was okay. I could have done with more hours, next month will be interesting financially, though I do think I will be okay since I`ve had some financial surprises (in the good sense!). I did go through some things at work. There was the whole bat-thing, although I now believe this to be part of a whole larger thing. But it got me thinking about what it is I want, and if I still like what I do now. Not that I have much choice. You have made that painfully clear, February. Thanks, I guess.
But this brings me to my next point: how I fared mentally. Because that`s where the real challenge has been the past month. What with the ongoing stress of not finding a job, getting rejected from a job I really wanted, constantly wondering if I`ll ever find an actual good job, and the accompanying self-confidence that has lowered throughout the month and has now reached a new low-point. But that`s all similar to past months.
No, there have been some new developments as well. I have reached a point severe enough with my (suspected, I should add) depression and possible anxiety disorder, that I am seriously considering getting professional help. There`s the bat thing, that I still get panicky moods about, although they do disappear more quickly than they did earlier last week.
Earlier last week, after I went out cycling and had to make my way through quite a lot of mud, I ended up disinfecting my bag when I got home, disinfecting my hands, washing my coat and gloves, and then showering. I really doubt that`s healthy behaviour. And similar behaviour happened three times in one week. It`s enough to make me seriously think I might not be doing quite as okay as I`d like to.
I`m first going to try and get some things straight myself. Get used to the new food, get up early more often, make sure I get more work done (and I don`t just mean the fun parts of writing this blog or fiction and working on the vlog, but also the job applications, filling in forms, things like that). I`m going to read more, both to get back on schedule, but also to relax more and because I know that reading makes me feel better.
I`m going to ease up on some of the harsh schedules I set for myself. I realise I expected too much of myself, and not managing to reach these goals is not helping with feeling down. So instead of AND working AND job hunting AND writing AND vlogging AND studying Japanese AND reading AND keeping up a social life Every. Single. Day. (because that is literally what I was doing), I`m going to switch things around. I won`t bore you with details, but if you see a bit less of me you`ll know why.
And as soon as I (or someone else) notice myself going downwards into the sheer insanity that was last week again, I will have to call my doctor for help, because obviously I can`t handle it all myself.
I do hope, February, that you`ll forgive me for slacking off in your last couple of days. I just need some time to rethink what I`m doing, so that I`m fully prepared and motivated and energetic again for when March arrives.
Can you do one thing for me though, February?
Please tell March to bring Spring. I know you like Snow, but it`s not helping my moods. Spring would. He`d be there, cheering me up. I just need to know he`s there, and that things will get better. Can you do that for me?
And then I`ll see you around next year. A new year, a new me, and a new you. I`m looking forward already to what you challenge me with next year.
(image source: http://www.afmonterey.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/February.jpg)