I've been away, but I'm back now. I've been suffering from depression for the last year or so. I only figured it out in April (with prompting from my sister Stephanie, for which I am very grateful), and started getting some help.
While I was ill I was unable to blog. I was unable to cook or garden or craft. I was unable to answer the telephone or read emails or open letters or see people. I'm much, much better now and all these things are starting to return. What is more there are new things in my life. For example I have a dog who makes me laugh, keeps me company and forces me to leave the house and get exercise. While he and I are walking together I notice the flowers and fruit and nuts as their seasons come and go. I notice the migrating birds, the turning leaves, the changing height of the sun at midday and the phases of the moon. He has really been a vital part of my recovery.
I have also taken up art. I love drawing and painting, and other media such as lino prints. I don't think I am expressing any deep inner feelings through my art, unless I have deep inner feelings about fruit and vegetables. But while I am creating I am so engrossed in wordless evaluations of colour, light, line, form etc. that my verbal self-critical inner dialogue is completely closed down, and temporarily I have peace. And this peace has lengthened and spread so that now the nasty inner dialogue is rarely heard at all.
One by one I have picked up the threads of my life and started doing the things that used to give me joy, and reconnected with the people who love and support me. Now I feel ready to begin blogging again. So if there is anyone out there who still reads Bean Sprouts - hi. Thanks for sticking with me. It's good to be home.