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I should be in university right now. I woke up in time, but couldn’t bear to move. I was defeated before I’d even opened my eyes.

The bed was warm and the room was cold. I needed a shower. I should’ve showered last night, but I didn’t. Because after my run I just wanted to eat and then lie watching shit television, numb. I couldn’t bear consciousness.

I didn’t want to risk running into a housemate this morning, so I lay in wait until they were out. Then I got up, carefully avoiding any mirrors (I am ashamed, my emotional overeating is starting to show, and my skin is bad because I can’t stop picking at it) and stood in the shower for ten minutes. Then I got back into bed to keep warm. I should’ve been in university.

My sleep has been really bad. It’s hard to get at. It doesn’t come when I want and need it. It takes ages to fall asleep and when I do I often wake up at about 4 in the morning. But when I have it, it’s blissful oblivion. I’ve never enjoyed sleep so much as I do now. If I didn’t have anything else to do, and no guilt about not doing those things, I think I could sleep all day. My body clock has always had nocturnal tendencies and I’ve always fought them. I prefer to be diurnal, I really do. My body just pushes the other way. I hate waking up to find I’ve missed the morning. I like mornings. But I could probably miss most of them if I didn’t force myself out of bed. Especially in this weather. The Geordie winter is bitter.

I’m never sure whether I’m depressed or just lazy. I’m really not achieving much at the moment. I’m falling so far behind on my degree and at the moment I don’t even have the emotional energy to worry about it. Nor do I have the words to explain to lecturers why I’m not attending, why I’m not staying on top of coursework. They probably think I’m just lazy. And perhaps they’re right.

I’ve a phone call scheduled tomorrow from an organisation that provides talking therapies. They’re going to assess my situation and try to work out what I need.

This phone call was hard won. A dear friend did all the chasing up and made sure I did the parts he couldn’t do for me. If it weren’t for him, I almost definitely wouldn’t have got this far with my referral. But I’m so scared I’m not even sure I’ll manage to answer the phone. My main motivation for going through with it is to reward his friendship, not to help myself. So be it. Sometimes the only way you can do the right thing is to bribe yourself with the wrong reason.

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