Writing is a bellwether for me. When I’m not depressed, I write and when I’m silent, I’m depressed. It’s so much of a bellwether that I’ve asked friends to monitor my writing and when they see it start to slip, to reach out to me and make sure I’m well.
The history of this blog shows this. When I suddenly lost the use of my original blog name, The 3 of ME, I went into a flurry of activity finding and registering a new name, notifying my host, installing WordPress, writing a new blog post and setting up this blog. My activity included trying, as much as possible, to save my old content for future republishing. Fortunately, while I’d lost my domain name, I hadn’t lost my host so I still had access to the raw data.
Then things grew still. My move to a new apartment had stalled and the stacks of totes had me feeling claustrophobic. At the time I was slipping into a depression so this feeling only accelerated the slide. I began a structured change to my medications that brought mood instability and the deepening of my depression. I was silent. By the New Year, I was deeply depressed. Because of my bellwether, I knew that depression was back once the righting stopped.
Things began to change in February. I went on a mini-vacation with a friend that, despite the trauma of the return trip, was refreshing. Upon returning home, I finished packing and moved. Then a significant hiccup. After the move I was suicidal. Talking to a friend helped. But more importantly, we adjusted my medications while continuing to replace one mood stabilizer with another.
I began to settle into my new apartment, got most, not all, of the unpacking and organizing completed, and my mood began to lift. As it did, my urge to write came back. The bellwether of my improving mood at work.
I returned to my stagnant blog, adding much-needed new content. I changed my logo, moving from something completely generic to one I designed. It’s not great, but it’s mine. I improved the imagery on the site, removed some unneeded plugins, and completed a variety of other “behind-the-scenes” tasks. All this has helped me feel better about this blog, something that was lacking when I was depressed.
Depressed no more, I continue to write. And I’ll continue to monitor my bellwether. Depression will come back and when it does the writing will stop. That’s my signal to act, to take steps to minimize the depression.
My bellwether is a predictor of my mood. Do you have a predictor of your own?
Image by Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay