2018. A year of change.

Last year wasn’t unkind to me. I had a lot of positive experiences, one of which was a ten day holiday to Italy. Towards the end of the holiday I thought “wouldn’t it be ace to live here?!”. Five months later an opportunity came up – Adam was alerted to a research position at a University in Napoli and he was offered the post. Molto bene!

As fate would have it, I was in talks at the time with my employer about a change in role, one that in theory, could be a remote post. I floated the idea of a move and there was pretty much no resistance. Working remotely would mean missing out on Friday drinks and the inevitable karaoke, Piggy Palace pork avalanche rolls (best in the biz), DR’s Radio Shan and the bantz about the ‘trips to the lock up’. However, what it has given me is my verve back. I feel more productive, focused, creative and balanced.

Last year was also a bit odd. I hadn’t been myself for a few months and it wasn’t until two people, one a close friend, the other a new one asked “Are you OK?“. I’d always been an anxious soul, a real worrier, to the point of obsession. I’d had a fuzzy head for months – a never-ending foggy, heavy head – I felt lacklustre and lethargic. I’m a fairly positive, enthusiastic person normally and although Adam had suggested that I was maybe not myself, I put it down to work, being pre-menstrual, the winter… Everything but a chemical imbalance in my brain.

I visited the Doctor (who was very sweet, understanding and didn’t rush me out the room like others have in subsequent visits) and he prescribed 20mg of Fluoxetine once a day. After about three to four weeks I started to feel a bit more balanced again and with the re-invigoration, I threw myself into work. Silly. Thankfully, at the time, I worked with a close friend / all round brilliant boss who noticed that the only way for me to take some time for me was to have an extended break from work. In my month off, I took the holiday to Italy, visited a great friend in Manchester, enjoyed a wedding in Yorkshire and while there got to see a Uni pal who is undertaking an exciting self-build. It was a day wandering, listening to podcasts and enjoying the sunshine on the beautiful city of Edinburgh that I started to feel more like me again.

I’m still on Fluoxetine, but a frequent dose of Neapolitan sunshine and a different approach to working life is helping hugely. I’m feeling pretty positive about 2018 and it’s been a brilliant start so far…

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