A post from our Community Correspondent Jim Jarsdel
Some of my lowest moments have been spent in bed.
When I feel shit, low, miserable, hurt, scared, or lonely, I will often retreat to bed. Sometimes I force myself to go to sleep because I want to shut myself away from the pain, other times I’ll feel drained and down. In both cases I welcome the chance to shut myself away in a darkened room. As a solution it kinda works .
Between those moments of being awake and feeling shite there is blissful nothingness.
It always seems to be bright summer evening when I feel this way. The feeling of crawling into bed, barely enough enthusiasm to undress, sun streaming through my bedroom window, further adds to low mood. Combined with a will to escape is a strong sense of waste, knowing I shouldn’t allow myself this escape.
I’ll draw the curtains to blot out the sunlight, and with it shut out the light of life. Invariably I’ll wake in the small hours, still feeling shitty, but with the added feeling of disorientation.
There are many positive steps I know I should take instead of retreating to bed. Do light exercise, phone a friend,or write in my mood diary – these tactics are all proven to help but seem so futile at the darkest moments.
So, I’ve learned to give myself a sort of compromise when I feel that bad I want to get into bed. I get into bed and take a book, but don’t let myself sleep. Often it’ll be something quite heavy, survivor stories of the holocaust or something, and that helps me put my shit in perspective.
Sure, I went to bed when I could’ve done light exercise, phoned a friend, or written in my mood diary, but sometimes being in bed and feeling safe and secure is what you need. Doing something productive while there and not just forcing myself asleep makes a big difference to my mood when I wake.