Back in time… 

It’s the summer of 2014 and my world was falling apart. For months leading up to this day, I had pretty much shut myself off from my closest friends. I had stopped going to church as I felt no desire to attend. I was ignoring phone calls and spending most of my time sitting in front of the television and watching the time pass. In my mind there was no reason to get out of bed in the mornings, what was the point? I was crawling through the day pretending to be happy, laughing at jokes that weren’t funny, smiling fakely when loved ones asked if I was ok… Everyone asked me if I was ok which just drove me further and further into myself. Each morning taking a shower was hard work. Getting dressed was torture, and leaving the house was almost impossible. The very things I adored became a chore and the very people I loved became strangers…

The smallest of things upset me without warning. I felt so alone, although I had pushed everyone away I didn’t want to be alone. I was confused and trully felt I had lost my mind. I would cry at adverts, cry at music, cry at everything without really knowing why. And in the darkest of nights, I would sit on the bathroom floor and beg God to take me away. I never told anyone about those moments- the quiet calm moments when I would literally beg God to take me away from it all. I would be lay in bed and would wonder how people would cope if I never woke up. Scenarios playing over and over in my head about my funeral, the attendees, my family. I really believed I was better off dead. No longer would I hurt people, no longer would I be a burden, no longer would my body ache or my mind crumble. I found solace in those dark places, dark and lonely and painful but calm… Always very calm and controlled. Silently begging for everything to end, but alas waking the day to fight the fight and continue into further confusion.

One night my boyfriend and I had a row, a heated blazing row about nothing. We had been arguing a lot but this row was different- I was different. I was angry and hopeless and at great risk of pressing the self destruct button on my entire life and everything in it. I was losing my mind. So wound up with emotion and confusion I screamed out everything that I had been keeping inside- fury and pain shot across the room at him in a desperate attempt to be heard. The rest is a blur… Screaming that things would be better if I wasn’t around. He screamed back at me that I needed help, he told me to look at myself in the mirror and so I did. And I saw a face I didn’t recognise, I hated the reflection. And with that I ran to the safety of the bathroom, slumped on the floor and crying I felt a sudden pain in my arm- in my emotion I had clung into my arm and tore the flesh with my nails… I needed help. The whole world knew I needed help and now I knew it too.

The very next day I drove myself to the doctors and sat awaiting my fate. I wondered if they would take me away, or would I be ignored, maybe they would tell me that I was fine and it was everyone else who were mad. As I sat down with the doctor my mouth opened and my eyes became wet. I had broken. Finally I was a mess on the floor with only the doctors concerned face keeping me from running away. And then she said it… “I think you are most certainly very highly depressed”. As my mind took in what she was telling me, a weight lifted off my shoulders… IT ALL MAKES SENCE TO ME

How could I have not seen this? How did I not know?

That’s the thing though, until you experience it You just don’t know. Until someone tells you, you just don’t feel it. I didn’t see it coming even though it was obvious to everyone around me. I was so far gone the only one who could pull me out was that doctor. She saved my life that day.

Pink elephant is still here? 

I’ve been celebrating my “wellness” for quite some time now. The memories of being unwell are distant and with each day, I become a little more confident in my ability to stay well. I still carry the odd self help book in my handbag just in case I need it . And I now allow myself time to rest and relax without worrying that the depression is returning. If I happen to accidentally sleep too late I simply acknowledge that I must have needed the rest. I no longer worry about that grey cloud drowning me in despair. I am healthy both in body and in mind and it feels brilliant. But. . . There’s always a but. .

It’s the season of ghosts and ghouls. Halloween is here and I’m reminded of the life I used to have. Logging on to social media I am bombarded with amazing photographs of friends having the time of their lives. Sipping wine and dressing up in sexy little costumes, they share their magical nights filled with pubs, clubs and house parties. Large groups of people I know all getting together and having fun. But I am missing from the chaotic photography. I’m not standing next to them with a glass of wine in one hand and a cigarette in the other. I’m not in that pub with a grin on my face and friends hanging off each arm. The cold hard truth is that I no longer get invited to such occasions. The friends that used to call me each week aren’t there anymore. And the phone calls I used to make go unanswered. This is a long term side effect of being very unwell.

All those months of ignoring calls and hiding away from friends has come back to bite me in the ass. All the times I made promises to attend events but later cancelled are having an effect on my life now. Depressed me hid away from the world, often I would promise to attend an important event but then made up a stupid excuse at the last minute. . . I couldn’t face it. And unfortunately I did this so often that it was inevitable that people would eventually get sick and tired of my lame excuses. Soon the invitations stopped, the calls stopped and the friends went away. I don’t blame them for giving up so soon. I’m quite sure during those dark days even I gave up on me.

They say you only know your true friends when you hit rock bottom and look up to see who’s got your hand. . . I saw too many friends walk away in my hour of need. And they are gone. I sit here now looking at social media and mourne the social life I once had. I gently try to clean up the last few bits of mess left behind from my poorly months…I grab myself a broom and start sweeping up the last bits of dust. And there, in that moment a hand draws near and takes the broom from me. This one hand starts sweeping up the mess with me. And it is then that I realise what’s important.

I should not mourne the friends that walked away, because right there in front of me is the very small handful of people who not only stood by me, but walked along side me during those testing times. They had my hand when I looked up from my rock bottom.

True friendship is not measured by quantity.

Beat. 

Heart beat.

Pumping faster as you try to stand still, pacing the room like a tiger on the prowl, you can’t remain calm as you feel the beat. Thumping harder against your chest. Beat. Breathing is shallow but feels too deep, your eye’s flickering to each new beat. Blood rushing to the brain you are panicking with each breath, each beat. The world starts to spin as nausea flows over you. Beat. Beaten. No such thing as resting heart beat… Nervous, you roam the room, fighting the waves of panic and for what? To feel that beat, slow down, soften, relax and take a breath. Beat. Beat. Beat. Memories are flying not floating past. Chest becomes rested again and with one more beat it is relaxed… Panic is gone and you can sit still, wiping the moisture away from your palms you rest. Heart beat calm and slow. 

Panic over. Beat. 

Pushing You Away

Mind is changing from one minute to the next and thoughts become rapid and unfocused. Every inch of my being is a labyrinth of uncertainty and contradiction. What my heart wants, my lips will never tell and as I fight away the dreaded fear of being hurt I find myself pushing you away. Every true thought and feeling is smudged out and replaced by a long wailing one way discussion to you, at you, blaming, complaining, screaming, searching, scratching and denying. You will not get close. I won’t let you. I can’t let you. Anxiety has full control and all I can do to survive is push and kick and push more and retract any loving feeling. My heart has relapsed and anxiety is in control. Paranoia is real and fear casts an overwhelming desire to protect myself and do what I do best… 

Push you away. And still you chase, you follow, you plead. My bitter tongue retaliates in a desperate bid to hurt you and make you see sense. I am not worthy. I don’t deserve your love. And even if I accept it, I know I will just get hurt. Again. Anxiety has control. It keeps me safe. My vile mouth pushes and punishes until finally you are gone. 

I am hurt. I was right. This self fulfilling prophecy continues to be my greatest downfall. And so I rest alone in my silence. Fear and anxiety have won again. The battle continues. 

Depression is Me?

I Am Depression

There is no light in those moments of dispair.
You scream from the heart but everyone just stares.
I’ve lost control of body and of mind.
Which way is up? I have gone bilnd.
The world closes in thick and fast
Loved ones run a away- they never last
You’re alone in the dark world and afraid
To scared to move. To scared to pray
A cry out of help is lost in a moment
A longing to be held is just an atonement
Nothing helps and nothing seems real
The misery inside this body is sealed.

I was called cold. 

This afternoon a very dear friend of mine sent shock through my entire being. Completely innocent was her comment but it really got me thinking about the deeper effects of bereavement. She said during conversation that she felt I was ice cold. Emotionless when it comes to illness and death. Intrigued by her announcement, I asked her to elaborate further on what she meant. She said that I had changed over the past six years. She said I used to be terrified of illness, terrified of losing love and most of all, determined to hold on to any form of security I could possibly latch onto. Although taken aback with her comment, it got me thinking seriously about what it was she (and possibly others) see within me that perhaps I am unaware of myself. Six years ago I lost the one stable person in my life. The one person I could phone day or night. The one female who literally was my everything. My grandmother. I got thinking about the person I was when she was alive, I was loving, kind, secure and calm.  It did not matter how shit life got, I had a kry to grans house and I always knew there was a bed for me and a hot meal when I was in need.I could walk into the house and was greeted with a smile and a cup of tea. It truly is a wonderful feeling to know that wherever you are in the world, there is always a house you can call home. That’s what my granny gave me. Total, unconditional love and security. Since she passed away, I am far more independent… Not in a good way but rather in a way that means I will never allow myself to love the way I loved her. Never will I allow my heart to break. Never will I collapse with the pain of a broken soul. I guess when you lose that one soulmate, you do become changed forever. I guess that is what my friend picked up on. Death doesn’t scare me at all. Not does illness. When you suffer such a broken heart as someone so vital to you passes, nothing ever matters again. No pain comes close. Am I cold? Or am I realistic? Who knows. 

Tears with meaning 

Sometimes, when I am sitting alone and deep in thought, memories start to come out of my eyes and continue on their journey down my cheeks and onto my clothing. People call these things “Tears” 

I don’t call them tears. I call them memories with meaning. 

I call them feelings.