Dorian Grey’s picture

The last few months I’ve been often told that I look tired, and occasionally worried. Both would be true. This is new to me, but not surprising. I am tired. Not physically – I feel quite sprightly. Mentally. Emotionally. I’m worn out by having to rouse myself to new effort each day; by having to should a burden that gets heavier all the time. I’m not having a whinge, simply explaining how things are. It takes strenuous mental effort to have to perpetually step to the plate. I am tired, and not a little concerned too.

Yesterday I caught up with a woman I hadn’t seen in two years. She’s a personal trainer, and we had a very brief fling back then. About a year ago she contacted me again wanting to catch up, but that never eventuated. About 7-8 weeks ago she got in touch again. I’ve so busy, so caught up in things, that I wasn’t able to see her until yesterday. “Look at you,” where the first words from her. I might have taken this as a compliment, something like “looking good”, except I know it wasn’t meant that way. I was different.

Later on when we were both naked I asked her about that. She propped herself up on one elbow and looked at me. “Your hair is different,” she said. “You’re much greyer now than you were.” This surprised me. I knew that I had gone greyer, but with my hair colour it tends to blend in – besides, I thought, it wasn’t that much.

She continued. My hair was longer too, and I have a full beard now that I didn’t then (I haven’t shaved since before Christmas). These were more personal judgement calls – she’s not mad on facial hair, and prefers hair short. The fact is though she saw dramatic change in me – in her memory at least I had been a sexy bloke she had fun with. Two years later she saw things I fail to see day by day. We parted with her suggesting I shave, get a hair cut and a blonde rinse.

As I’ve said before I’m in reasonably good shape now, but that is independent of how many grey hairs I have, and level of weariness I feel. I think I’ve held up well given the circumstances, but clearly there are outward signs that the experience has taken its toll. I continue to function, but this can’t go on.

Right now things are at their most critical and precarious – which is a big statement given how precarious things have been for so long now. I have to get through this, but I have to wonder if I can go on like this much longer – healthwise – if things don’t pan out as I plan them to (bearing in mind the odds are stacked against me).

In the meantime maybe I should get some blonde tips.

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