Scale has tipped – I’m back!

And not just to the blog…

As those who have read my blog knows, I’ve struggled greatly with depressions since my treatment that

I went through 15 years ago. I’ve had several depressions, but I had two back-to-back first in 2015 then 2017. Although I’ve had other depressions, this one was the most extreme – almost rivalling the one I got during/directly after my treatment.

After the conference in Budapest with YCE, I’ve been able to take the last step in my recovery. Sort of the last step anyway.

Sudden end to a long journey

It’s been brewing for a while now; I got much better many months back, but it was still more comparable to how it was when I got and had the depression in 2015. I then actually got a bit worse again the past two months or so. Then I went to the conference in Budapest with YCE and I got the kick I needed to climb out of the pit I’ve been in for years. (I’ll be writing about the conference in the very near future.)

I’ve concluded that I’ve most likely been under-stimulated for the past two months and that that is the reason for this sudden improvement. This is how my depressions prior to 2015 have ended as well, and as such I recognise the feeling and what it means.

What changed

Now I feel more like I did when I studied adult high school-level classes prior to 2015. My mind feels clear, fresh. I’ve started to exercise, albeit light and slow. I can read, and read the news again, I shower more often – which I for some reason hated during the depression. I feel more spontaneous. I’m able to write more analytical texts where I make use of facts and statistics, something I couldn’t just a few months back.

Before it felt as though my mind was permanently shrouded by a heavy, dark veil, ever making its presence known. If I tried to focus on a task, like reading or memorising something, I felt a huge resistance; an incredibly commanding feeling of discomfort and distress. I could push through this feeling sometimes, but it was incredibly draining to do so. Despite this, everything was blurry to some degree, no matter how hard I tried to focus.

Last step – sort of…

Of course, the reality isn’t as cut and dry as it seems and it’s not over as such. I’ve only gotten enough energy to be able to actually exercise a bit – both physically and mentally. However, this process usually doesn’t take that long. Once I have enough energy to exercise and do something meaningful and use my mind to its fullest (sort of), things usually fall into place. I can quit with some medications, primarily those related to diabetes, I’ll get even more energy and feel clearer, I can exercise more and it just spiral – for the better. Sort of landing an airplane – once you’ve landed, the hard part’s over and you’re pretty much set. (I’m assuming, I’m not a pilot.)

Taxing to the terminal

What I’m trying to say is that what I have left of this journey is easy compared to what I’ve gone through to get here today. Now, all I need to do is use my energy and actually exercise a little bit and find something meaningful to do during the day. Being in this position is a luxury; something far too many people don’t realise or appreciate.

I also need to learn how to deal with my fatigue though and get used to my new life I’ve had for 15 years. I also don’t have quite as much energy as I did prior to 2015 yet. My memory isn’t the best yet either, but it’s good enough.

Irrespective of all this, this is still the easy part. I’m back.

I’ll be forever grateful to Youth Cancer Europe – for allowing me to pursue a role as patient advocate; and the Swedish Childhood Cancer Foundation for providing social support the past couple of years, and not least my family who’s been supporting for all these 15 years since I first got ill.

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2 Comments

  1. ERIK – You will inspire many with your journey. I know it has been hard for you but without this hardship I doubt you would see the world the way you do now. In a round about way it can be a blessing of sorts. Keep it up! I’m sure you will end up helping many people! You always have been a kind soul – one of the few good ones.

    A distant friend. :)
    1. Hi friend,

      Thank you for the kind words <3

      And you're absolutely correct; I wouldn't see the world as I do without these experiences. When asked if I wish I wouldn't have gotten cancer, I usually answer no. It has shaped me to who I am today, for better or worse.

      Erik Sturesson

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