Thanks, and Sorry
I know from the emails and other messages that I’ve received over the past few weeks that friends and readers of this blog have been a bit concerned about me. I owe you all an explanation and an apology. I have actually written a very long post detailing everything that has happened, but I don’t think it’s appropriate to post it at this time. Or perhaps ever. Maybe I’ll keep it for when I write my memoirs. Or not.
The short version, which will have to do for now, is that not long ago something happened that caused something I’ve lived with for a very long time to flare up worse than I’ve ever experienced before. Certain other factors, which I won’t go into either, exacerbated the situation still further. Anyway, all this hit me so hard I had to seek medical help and have been declared “unfit for work” for the last three weeks. Most of this time has been spent trying – and, until recently, failing – to find appropriate treatment to allow me to get back to “normal”.
I know that in this period I have let down a number of colleagues and students who had every right to expect better of me. I know also that I’ve ignored many offers of help from friends who have expressed concern about my well-being. I haven’t done this out of rudeness, but because I knew I that I had to solve these problems on my own. I was greatly moved by the kindness shown by so many people, but at the end of the day a problem shared is a problem doubled.
I know that at times, during especially low periods, usually in the early hours, I’ve abused the social media by posting horribly self-indulgent and self-pitying items, usually poems. I can only apologise, but it’s been an indescribably lonely journey and I’ve only had social media for company. Insomnia is a bastard.
Fortunately, I think I’ve now turned the corner. I will be off work until the end of the month, but at least I’m no longer dreading going back. My GP and the University Counselling Service have done a brilliant job in working so hard to sort out a programme to help me recover. I now think I know what to do to get myself out of the hole I’ve been in. It won’t be easy actually doing it, but at now have something to aim at I am much more confident.
I am so very sorry to those people who I’ve upset or alarmed with the way I’ve behaved over the last few weeks. I wish I could explain more, but it’s such a long and convoluted story that (a) you’ll all find it extremely boring and (b) I don’t think you’ll understand anyway. All I can do is apologise if I’ve upset anyone. That wasn’t the plan at all. It’s my problem, not yours. I just haven’t been strong enough to keep it entirely to myself, as I should have done.
Now all I have to do is to think of a way of persuading the University and, more importantly to me, my students that they should give me the chance to prove I can be what I am supposed to be.Follow @telescoper