This isn’t beer related, but this is my platform and I will continue to use it as I see fit.
I’m not going to give regular updates on how I’m doing or my condition after I opened up about my depression and anxiety. It wouldn’t be beneficial to any of us, but I was overwhelmed by some of the initial response to that post and did feel a degree of release and freedom having put that into the ether.
I’ve sought further help and I am currently on anxiety controlling (yes, a type of anti-depressant) tablets that have odd side effects but seemingly short term benefits. As well as giving me a couple of hours a day of random, endorphin-fuelled, unbridled joy, they’ve also made me a little numb at times to consequences or feelings. It’s not exactly what I wanted, and financially this new found recklessness isn’t favourable, but I’ve decided to embrace it for a period that I feel I need medication. Seeing the world through consequence-free eyes is a little satisfying and freeing. Of course, we can’t all live our lives like this for long, but it’s refreshing when you’ve known nothing but debilitating stress for seven years.
What they don’t do is change your own personality or general perceptions as was clearly shown on Friday and this is the epiphany inducing story I wanted to quickly share with the world so have decided to post about on this beer related blog.
I boarded a train in Huddersfield station, after going to the Huddersfield Town match Friday afternoon. When I boarded, my carriage was relatively empty and I sat on a two person seat at least three rows either way from the nearest passenger. I slumped into my chair and considered the misfortunes of two points dropped in a match we should have won. I checked the other scores from the day on my phone. I briefly checked Twitter. All in all I descended into a relaxing bubble.
This was interrupted by the arrival of a family of 5 boarding the train – a mother and father and three young sons. The parents in this group sat in the two seats across the aisle from me. Two of the sons sat directly behind me. The other directly in front. I immediately knew how the rest of this train journey would pan out and became my angry, agitated self, scowling out of the window as one of the boys behind me started kicking my chair. This continued as the train departed and with me now sandwiched between the children, I had to endure them shouting over at each other and milling between seats. I was furious. The pull-down table in front of me was soon broken in my silent rage. I shook my head. I sighed loudly. I had many thoughts of wonder about how terrible the parents were for allowing the boys to behave this way, rather than sit quietly.
Eventually, as one of the boys sat in the seat next to me to talk to his brother, I decided to shoot the parents my most belligerent look so they knew just what despicable humans I thought they were. It was at this moment that I looked at the mother properly for the first time. She looked exhausted. She wore a dark bandanna to cover her hairless head and she showed all the unfortunate signs of somebody having to sadly suffer through chemotherapy. Her husband held her hand in both of his and asked how she was feeling. She turned at this point to speak to the son who had sat next to me but I gave her a smile that hopefully said that it wasn’t a problem and she did, for her part, seem relieved.
This was the epiphany – the moment. Here I was being my typical angry self when let us reflect truthfully on the scenario. I was only on this train for 15 minutes. The children weren’t being that disruptive anyway; they were just acting like children rather than misbehaving. In 15 minutes I’d be meeting my mate off this train and nothing that happened aboard would ever matter again. There is such bigger things going on in my life right now and there was certainly bigger things happening to this poor mother. Why should I add to those woes by acting disgruntled on this train journey and making things more difficult? Why would I be so rude?
I wanted to share it because it happens to me when I hear annoying phrases such as “Smile, it might never happen” because you know what, it is fucking happening as we speak so why would you say something so fucking stupid? Would it kill us all to be a little kinder? There are a lot of people going through a lot of private shit everywhere that you might not recognise and might not understand. Let’s all just be kinder to everyone we know and meet and stop sweating the small stuff. There’s a lot of bigger stuff happening in my life right now than some bored child who kicked my chair once. Let’s recognise that.