We Can Recover It For You, Wholesome

When life becomes really shit; when bits of life become unbearable; when you can spend two hours getting out of bed in the morning; when you seem to be caught in a downward spiral of illness, depression, addictions etc; there are two things you can do – end it all with a bottle of pills or just get a fucking grip!


Well, that has been the situation I have found myself in of late. Life has just become really shit. I’m not quite sure when it started. Maybe it was when the oesophageal ulcer was discovered; it could have been when I was told that this is caused by a hiatus hernia (I also have a spigelian hernia); perhaps it was when I was told I have Barrett’s oesophagus, a condition where the cells in the upper digestive tract become so damaged by the acid reflux that they become pre-cancerous; maybe it was when, after finally convincing the doctors that my shortness of breath was not asthma or a heart condition, a CT scan discovered that I have Bronchiectasis – a chronic condition which is caused by the irreversible widening of some of the air vessels in the lungs.

Whatever triggered this shitness of life, a little while ago I finally admitted that my depression had come back with a vengeance.

My old addictions have returned. Not alcohol, or drugs, or even porn – they are of little interest to me. No, my weakness has always been food. I went for a good couple of years eating healthily and then the lure of the evil substances became too strong. Cakes, sweets, chocolate, biscuits, bread all started calling me. An olive loaf from Tesco wouldn’t even make it to tea-time; A packet of biscuits would become one big snack to be had while watching TV; a cake would sit in the fridge, crying out to me, while I’m shovelling the chip-shop chips down my throat, hurrying to rescue it. I think you get the picture

Writing, dealing with admin, cleaning, all became massive chores. I would find myself doing anything and everything to distract myself from the work, including eating. I could pace around the room for hours occasionally glancing at the computer screen that displays just two words, “Dear Sirs.” I would find that the shelf of books, ignored for years, suddenly needed alphabetising. While staring at a pile of unopened mail, I would rediscover my love of crime novels

Some people lose their appetites when they are depressed. Not me! I eat. The problem with eating when depressed is that one does not eat proper food. I eat utter crap. But then chemicals in the utter crap exacerbate the depression causing me to eat more crap. I would find myself walking down the cake aisle knowing that what I am about to do will make me feel dreadful. I found myself arguing with the internal health guru who would keep telling me that walking down the fruit aisle is far better for me. Then I found myself welcoming that drawn out down that comes after the short-lived high; I looked forward to that irresistible fatigue that followed a carb rush; I couldn’t wait for the unconsciousness that followed, be it just half an hour or two hours. Like an abused spouse knowing the dangers of welcoming the abuser back, I just couldn’t help myself.

Eventually I decided to do something about my situation. I have been psyching myself up for this over the past couple of weeks. I have got my important affairs in order; I’ve cleared my admin; I have prepared some important people for what is to come; now the time is almost upon me.

No! Option number one is no option at all. I am too much of a coward to do that. Besides, people have been known to take almost two month’s worth of mirtazapine in one go and make a total recovery with no long-term damage. No, my method of choice is a total reboot – cold turkey style.

Last time I took a reboot option, it was just about diet. I followed Joe Cross’s “Reboot” diet and then some. I literally (using the word in the correct manner) consumed nothing but whole juices for almost a month. It was tough but I came out the other side a new man almost three stone lighter. It was tough but well worth it.

This time it is a total reboot. Not only will I get a grip of my diet, I will also get a grip of many other aspects of life. My home is a total mess, for example – I am terrified of the possibility of even my sister turning up, I am that ashamed. The problem is, my allergies coupled with my bronchiectasis means that stirring up household dust is quite an unpleasant experience. Of course if I don’t clean because of this, the dust gets worse so that will aggravate the breathing issues.


So, for two weeks I will be a near recluse. No Facebook; No emails; No phone; No people; No processed food (unless you class cooking or juicing as processing). I will spend two weeks just on project me. Hopefully I will come out the other side a new me. I will have slept as much as I need to with no alarm clock to wake me up. I will have at least cleaned my house and got rid of a load of crap; I will have lost weight and got a grip of my diet, ridding myself of my addictions; I will have begun to exercise and have a fitness plan of some sort in place I will have completed my stalled script and written a coupled of short stories; I will have no backlog of administration to deal with; and I will have readied my caravan for some trips around the country. I will also, by that time, have a patch on my spigelian hernia.

So that’s it. That’s why I am disappearing for a fortnight. I will, however, attempt to keep a blog going during that time. I will attempt to report every few days. I might even add some recipes.


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