As the years roll by summer is getting easier.
So far we haven't had the heatwave that knocked me about last year, but I've had my seasonal blip, brought on by having become disabled one summer not so long ago.
I found the first 'anniversary' unbearable. There's a date, a time, a place to remember. I hadn't remotely come to terms with it all and there was a great sense of loss of freedom.
I bitterly mourned the fact I couldn't go on holiday, and of course because I was so depressed memories of family holidays (both happy and not so happy) plagued me.
I knew that parties and barbeques were happening but the noise levels alone meant I couldn't (and still can't) be there with my friends.
I had what I called 'freedom dreams' about enjoying summer before I became ill.
Ready to give me a slap? No need. Like I said, it is getting easier. With some revised attitudes:
This summer I have just completed an art course, which has proved to be the best treatment so far provided by the NHS. I have various paints and pastels around the house.
I am also massively into photography, for those who hadn't noticed :-)
My relationship didn't survive, but having survived a deep depression my love for my son fires my will not just to live but to create and thrive.
This year I am hoping to stay in a cottage close to home for a few days with my mum and son. I am hoping we can make it through the floods, nevermind heatwaves.
I will not allow those ghosts of summers past to haunt me. Therapy helps me work through what I can't help but relive at times. Art, photography and writing provide the creative outlets that I see as essential to anyone who needs to heal. And music. But only in small doses.
I will nurture friendships new and old and thank God that I am alive.
I am alive. And when I say alive, I mean my inner core is alive. There's a long way to go yet, but getting into the rhythm of living again is providing the forward momentum that was absent for so long.
Sumer is icumen in, perhaps.