First, thank you all for your kind and thoughtful comments and e-mails over the past few weeks. They have meant more to me than can be expressed in words.
Second, I wanted to check in and write a bit about my absence. While at the Computers in Libraries conference, I had what is being described as a severe panic attack. I have had them in the past, but they were miniscule compared to what I was experiencing in DC. I wound up in the ER at Georgetown University, where I was subsequently released after an hour or two (looking back, I should have insisted on them keeping me there a while longer, but hindsight, etc, etc). I was able to get back to Long Island that same day (Thursday) and was hoping that the attacks would subside in the AM.
I made an emergency doctor’s appointment the next day (again, looking back, I should have seen a Psychiatrist right away), and he prescribed a low dose anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medication. After taking those for 2 days, I still felt no relief. Off to the local ER I went again and waited in the Psychiatric waiting room for 2 hours until I was seen by a team consisting of a Psychiatrist, Social Worker, and Nurse Practitioner. I was told to half the medication I was taking (because they were making me very drowsy) and that should help and that I should make an appointment with a Psychiatrist, which I did, the next day. He spoke with me and my wife for 50 minutes and decided to take me off the medication I was taking and prescribed another one (at a very low dose) and that it should start working immediately.
By the next morning I felt much better. Not 100% (I’m not sure I’ll ever be back to 100%), but better. A little panic, a little anxiety, but just enough of a hint that I knew that I was still afflicted (I hate that word). We realized that I needed more of a change. A lifestyle change. A drastic lifestyle change. So, I am eating healthier, I sleep more (no more late blogging nights), I’m not taking on too much responsibility at work, I worked out (actually joined a gym and am feeling the effects already), and, most importantly, I take it easy, enjoy the time I spend with my beautiful daughter, loving wife, and caring parents (and parents in law).
Which leads me to back to this blog. I’m not giving it up. Blogging for me is therapeutic. Writing is therapeutic. I just need to do it in a different and healthier way. I have been reading my aggregator and have a ton of stuff that I want to share with you (which is why I love it). I’m hoping to post as much as I did in the past, just at different times throughout the week. For example, if I have moment at work, I’ll blog. Or, if I can steal a few minutes in the evening after the wife and kid go to sleep (and all of my other “real work” is done), I’ll post. You will not be seeing anything from me past 11:00PM anymore (except this one). You will most likely not be seeing me on IM for a while. But, you will be hearing from me here, more often as the days and weeks progress, and I get my wheels turning again (even if they are at a different pace than before). The content will not change. I’ll still be preaching about weblogs, RSS, content delivery, keeping current, syndication, new tools, and the occasional rant. That’s what got me here in the first place, right?
So, in the words of Stephen King: Thanks, “faithful readers” for your eyes (and for you conference attendees, ears) over the past 3 and a half years. We now return you back to your regularly scheduled weblog.