What a Relief!

Last week it was reported that Bradley Wiggins – last year’s winner of the Tour de France – will not ride this year’s race He dropped out of the Giro d’Italia last month suffering from a chest infection and now a niggling knee injury has prevented him from being able to prepare properly. He is quoted as saying: “I can’t train the way I need to train and I’m not going to be ready. Once you accept that, it’s almost a relief not having to worry about the injury and the race against time. I’ve been through this before, when I broke my collarbone [in the 2011 Tour] so I know how it works. I’ll get this sorted, set new goals for this season and focus on those.’

He could have been talking about how I’ve been feeling lately. Let me re-phrase that: Over the past few days I have come to accept that I have been kidding myself about how I have been feeling recently. It took a colleague to tell me that I didn’t seem like myself the other day to ring alarm bells.  The last time a colleague had said that to me it was in the summer of 2010; the next day I went to see my doctor and I ended up being off sick for 5 months with a severe bout of depression that could have killed me.

I have no plans to be off work for anything like that amount of time, but I’m going to see my G.P. ( general practitioner – not a specialist, for those of you outside the U.K.) in the morning and I’ll let her decide.

Letting my doctor decide – that is something I don’t have a very good record in. Over the years I have – with disastrous consequences for my diagnosis and subsequent treatment – pretty much told them what was wrong with me, diagnosis and all.

Bradley took advice – including from his cycling team’s sports psychiatrist – and that led to his decision to focus on his recovery, even though it meant not defending his Tour de France title ( a rare event, the last time that happened was in 1988 when the Irish rider Stephen Roche was injured the year after having won the yellow jersey).

Regular readers will be well aware that I am ever so keen to dole out advice and guidance on matters of mental health. It’s time that I listened to someone else’s expertise.

Not Dark Yet

Shadows are fallin’ and I’ve been here all day
It’s too hot to sleep and time is runnin’ away
Feel like my soul has turned into steel
I’ve still got the scars that the sun didn’t heal
There’s not even room enough to be anywhere
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.

Well, my sense of humanity has gone down the drain
Behind every beautiful thing there’s been some kind of pain
She wrote me a letter and she wrote it so kind
She put down in writin’ what was in her mind
I just don’t see why I should even care
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.

Well, I’ve been to London and I been to gay Paris
I’ve followed the river and I got to the sea
I’ve been down on the bottom of the world full of lies
I ain’t lookin’ for nothin’ in anyone’s eyes
Sometimes my burden is more than I can bear
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.

I was born here and I’ll die here against my will
I know it looks like I’m movin’ but I’m standin’ still
Every nerve in my body is so naked and numb
I can’t even remember what it was I came here to get away from
Don’t even hear the murmur of a prayer
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.

Bob Dylan (1941 – )

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One Response to What a Relief!

  1. The Lyons' says:

    Good luck at the GP Nick. We are all with you to beat this depression.
    Ivan, Nina & Daniel


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