Well, it feels like I have been away for a long time. And I have I suppose, at least from my site and my blog.
When I set it up last year, just before the first Bake Off episode, I had the full intention of writing a blog post and a few recipes a week – using my blog as another outlet – and concentrating on Trevor, my pooch: the only black dog that I want in my life.
Alas, this was not to be, and although I have had an exciting eight months in many respects, I have also had a significant dip in my mental health. On the excitement scale, this does not score so well. So the blog went on the back-burner, along with many other hobbies and distractions I have invested in over the years. And I made myself feel wretched and guilty about it, in a way that only a depressive can.
But not as guilty about it as that bike I bought a few summers ago and never rode again after the first groin-achingly, bum-bruisingly horrific time.
That bike was stupid.
I’m currently unable to work as a Speech Therapist, and have been signed off by my doctor. I’m not able to either concentrate or act with reliability when dealing with others at the moment, so I am consequently unable to function as a health professional. I have however, had some fantastic help to get back on track, which has been a journey – and a battle – in itself. I will update you in a few separate posts as I think the avenues for tailored medical and therapeutic support can be difficult for many of us that live with psychiatric conditions, and therefore deserve further discussion. It it encouraging though, that rather than just the odd ray of sunshine through intermittent cracks of dilapidation, on the dark and dank way to a dead end, I feel there is light at the end of the tunnel. It is quite a novelty. And hugely empowering.
Alongside trying to get better, I have been involved in a variety of things; making and decorating cakes, charity work, giving talks, occasionally being part of the ‘Lunchtimers’ section on BBC Radio Manchester with Becky Want, going to food shows with the other Bakers from GBBO 2014, partying with the other bakers, going on holiday, trying my hand at gardening, and, most exciting of all, writing for Standard Issue Magazine. I may have only had one week in the tent, but from this, phenomenal opportunities have stemmed.
Over the next few weeks, I will post as many updates and links as possible to the things I have been involved with and get back on track. I also need to get some of my recipes up. A baking site with one recipe is not a baking site. Then I will try to write some funny stuff again. I’m starting intensive therapy next week, two full days a week for six weeks. There has to be some material there, right?
And for anyone who has powered through that fairly boring couple of paragraphs and arrived here, I highly recommend that you have a look at Standard Issue Magazine online. It is full of amazing writers, and there is a lot of female authors on there that you will recognise, flying the flag for funny intelligent women everywhere. And there’s no body shaming pictures, diet regimes, ‘rated or slated’ sections or sex tips in sight. I dare you not to snort your cornflakes through your nose whilst having a gander over breakfast.
Anyway, it’s nice to be back in the saddle*.
*not that bloody bike saddle though. Like I said, it made me cry. Snot and everything.