April is the Arsiest Month

Waving? Drowning?

Waving? Drowning? Who the hell knows?

“April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land …”

– TS Eliot, “The Waste Land”

Warning: bad language, questionable photographic skills, and self pity.

I’m home, on a week’s leave. Because I didn’t want unpaid, or to go off sick. Those were my options.

*Sigh*, as Charlie Brown would say.

What is it with April? I just can’t seem to get the hang of it.

2015-01-18 13.59.21

Cusworth Park, January 2015. I *get* January.

April is when people close to me – Mosu; my father-in-law; Mom – die. Plus people I wasn’t so close to, like my cousin, whose sudden death at 50-something, a fortnight or so after Dad’s, shook me.

One 1st April – although American, I do understand simple irony – I went off sick. And, for the first time, actually took it easy, rather than driving myself even further down. A bit of a mixed memory, that.

It’s also the month when, last year, I injured my knee after tripping over my own goddamn shoelaces. (Yes, I am aware I’m an idiot, ta very muchly.)

April is also when something happened which ultimately resulted in my going for counselling. That “something” is a big part of why I’m home writing this, rather than at work, or preparing for a shift.

The Spook and Daffodil: sounds like a trendy pub.

The Spook and Daffodil: sounds like a trendy pub.

Today is my first day off. So the inner dialogue is still quite shouty:

“No one wants to know!”
“Shut the fuck up!”
“Who cares? No one sodding cares, that’s who!”

Because when I’m unwell – and I’ve been a lot worse than this – that’s how my conversations with myself often go.

Is this helpful? Is it hell. But neither are people who tell me to “move on”.

Except, of course, maybe they aren’t. Maybe that’s just my particular flavour of bipolar-coloured paranoia.

“Oh, hell…” I can hear my mother say.


Mom didn’t teach me to swear. The passage of time, and shite happening, did.

Wild violets against an old brick wall.

Wild violets against an old brick wall.

About Sheila N

Enough about me. Art by Tom Brown.
This entry was posted in Bipolar, mental health and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to April is the Arsiest Month

  1. blahpolar says:

    I like TS Eliot I do … and perhaps your tea infuser (is it a robot?) is waving while he drowns. Maybe Stevie Smith just didn’t consider the concept of multitasking. Your Aprils sound like my Februaries – nasty buggers. Ughhh … sorry about your month and your something and your sickness too. April is almost done, kick its arse hard when it turns to go.

  2. sjn25 says:

    It is a robot: “Teabot”. I can’t remember if I named it that, or it came prenamed. I am shite at multitasking…it’s a myth, by people who just want us to work even more goddamn hard.
    I’m sorry your Febs are my Aprils. Oddly enough, I had fancied this week off, but am running out of leave. Damn my subconscious mind!
    Need to read some Stevie. Getting back into poetry again after a long hiatus. Do you still write poetry? I hope so!

  3. Tina Stevens says:

    Familiar conversations, having them now. however, you did find out that people do care. That i something.

    • sjn25 says:

      Thank you for your comment, love. Yes, it is something…but *believing* something so good, when unwell, is a struggle. Less so today (Weds) than when I wrote the above.

      My nasty internal conversations have died down, thank the gods. I hope yours have, too.

  4. Nimue Brown says:

    Appreciating the sharing. It is so easy to assume its just me, and recognising that tough patches, melt-downs, being overwhelmed and wobbling is not, in and of itself any kind of weird, is a comfort. Hope the time off provides relief. If you need things to read, pull me email addy from the comment and give me a yell, I can send things.

    • sjn25 says:

      Many thanks, Nimue. Your comments helped inspire the blog which followed (“Things Fall Apart”). I have a lot to read – always do! – but have been thinking of some of your “Moon Books” titles, eg the one about prayer.

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