How I Avoided A Nervous Breakdown

I live and experience my life through an intense emotional prism.

The weight of the air around me is pressing and restricting.

Last week, I met at a party a couple whom I had not seen for some considerable time.

The woman was chatting and bubbly and her husband subdued and quiet, each breath looked to be an effort for him to take.

My heart was aware of him, and when I found a moment later to be with him, we spoke about a crisis which had befallen him which had caused him to have a nervous breakdown.

A period of bullying in the workplace had brought down his sense of self; his dignity; his purpose so that his life came crashing down on him with severe consequences for his mental health and his financial situation.

Heavily medicated, just to be able to function, he told me about the circumstances of the abuse and how gradually he had been worn down until he had to quit.

I was conscious to listen, rather than to speak, but I explained to him briefly how I related to his experience and how by talking and expanding the canvas on which I live my life, I had avoided having a nervous breakdown.

I suffered terribly during a relatively short period of my working life and I think I survived largely intact because I refused to be a victim.

This is not to suggest that my friend in any way has failed, he has not, but I had the presence of mind, even in the darkness to be aware of the light around me in family; friends; faith.

I think the air is heavy around me because I am in a continuum of pushing it outwards, gasping for the clean air of living; of being alive; to fill my lungs each day.

Each day is a new opportunity to discover where I fit in to the world and that sense of belonging to the earth changes everyday if I have the presence of mind to look and listen.

Stretching every sinew to reach that state of weightlessness which comes with acceptance of how things are; acceptance of what is; what was, and what is still to come.

My next blog will be: A Call to Mother

William Defoe

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