What depression is to me – because sometimes, when you’re depressed, you can only talk about depression. Then laugh at it.

Every bout of depression surprises me like I’m 14 and it’s my first period all over again. Yes, I was a late bloomer and I wish I could feel the jealously of millions of women around the world, if only this thick layer of depression didn’t do exactly as the word says it does. Surely that rich jealously from women would cure any depression? I’ll add it to the list of Reasons I Shouldn’t Be Depressed pinned up in some ignorant fuckers minds. But sadly (the irony) there will be no pinning as I am channelling Ringo Star today and therefore take back any snarky word I’ve said – peace and love, peace and love.

It’s like a ghost tapping on my shoulder when I’m really engrossed in an activity. I’m mindlessly scooting or painting a tree branch and BOO. Except there’s no BOO, there’s nothing to see, just empty space, no proof for others of what just happened in my brain. I’m still looking over my shoulder though, there has to be a culprit. I’m looking over my shoulder just to prove to you that something is going on and I’m not just crazy. I’m looking over my shoulder to see if others are also looking over their shoulders. I must be surrounded by people that also feel like Nearly Headless Nick just passed through them. These Dementors are real, I swear. J.K. wasn’t lying. You understand, right? You have to understand. What do you mean we are all different? You don’t like Harry Potter? Oh, wow, that just tops it all off. Well, I’m in Hufflepuff, I’ll have you know. YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT A HUFFLEPUFF IS? Depression gone, replaced with rage. That cured it. Peace and love, peace and love.

I moved my entire room around yesterday. It’s unimportant to what I’m writing other than the hilarity that I was breaking down in tears every 10 minutes. Why, you ask? Are you due to bleed from your vagina, or do you have a little human growing in said vagina? Nah. Apparently moving heavy furniture by yourself does this to you. You don’t know, maybe every person who has ever moved furniture by themselves has just cried the entire time, and I’m the first person brave enough to admit it. Or, and a much more reasonable answer, my body decided to not sweat from my armpits, but rather from my eyes. I have no memory of smelling so it probably is true. I mean, The Flight Of The Conchords didn’t write the song I’m Not Crying for no reason. Needless to say, this time round the depression seems to be a bit more random and spontaneous. Oh, how exciting! A spontaneous depression.

I’m not stopping doing things. My bed is my friend but tonight I’m going rock climbing. Tomorrow James and I are going for a picnic in a park that we have only briefly visited once before, but I’m a little unsure about it. It looks like a place people would go dogging, and I’m not sure that I want to be sitting there eating a scotch egg while there’s people dogging in the bushes next to me. Might put me off my food, you know? Spreading my philly as they’re spreading their… Or dipping into my houmous as they’re dipping into… It’s best if I stop that there. I just envision a sudden break down of crying on my part, still eating my cherry tomatoes between sobs as they start to taste more and more salty from my tears rolling down my face, which makes me cry more, then, softly at first, you hear moaning. Then louder and louder as my cries match the volume and pitch. One bush apart from each other – immense joy and immense pain.

Now I re-read the part about us only briefly visiting this park before, sounds like we were the ones dogging.

This is where my sad and tired brain is at. It is what it is. Peace and love.

 

Going from one bed to another

I seem to have gotten into a routine of bed hopping. Now hold on one second, that is not anything sexual before you think it! But quite frankly I’m charmed that you would think that I could pull that many guys to bed hop like that. Thank you. Sadly, I mean because of my work schedule, James’s work schedule, my depression and, lets be honest, laziness, my new routine is literally to leave one bed for the next. Like a beauty vlogger; My Morning Routine! My Daily Routine! My Nightly Routine! Bed. I’m in bloody bed. It’s always bed. I’m in bed as I write this. It’s 18:09. 

Let’s lay it out. For the last two weeks James has been getting up at 6:30am for work, and seeing as the only time we can see each other is in the week, I am there. Waking up. At 6:30am. On my days off. I get home at 7:30am and go straight to bed. I don’t sleep, I drink coffee, blog, watch YouTube. Bed.

Suddenly it’s like 10am, shit. I must do something. How about a tea this time? Well, while I’m drinking it; bed. Breakfast? Bed. What’s next? What do I want to do? I go off and do it, and then when I’m not; bed. Maybe bed is my ‘sofa’ because I live with my parents. Whatever, it’s still a bed.

I’ve said bed so many times it’s no longer a word.

Bed.

Bunk.

Chaise.

Berth.

Trundle.

Thank you Google.

Is my bed the best one in the world? No*. I feel like it hardly resembles a mattress with all the lumps, bumps and indentations, probably from me spending the whole of my existence in it. I think the real reason is because it’s in the centre of all my things. My plants I love watering, my laptop, any craft things, clothes, make up, I dunno, everything I own I suppose. But it’s a bed, it screams lay down. Chill. Browse YouTube. Have another coffee. Then before you know it, I’m going back to James’s to another bed because he’s bed is like his ‘sofa’.

It doesn’t hurt at the moment, like I’m not frustrated at how much time I’m in bed because I’ve been really low. Which, god, sounds like the worst idea. I’m still active, I went for a 3.51 mile walk today, going for a scoot with the dogs tonight, wrote a blog post (not including this one), made bruschetta, made probably about 5 cups of tea or coffee… I just rest in bed in between, I recharge. I’m looking after myself. This is dangerous territory though, I’m fully aware. I do not want to go back to the days when I lived in bed and wouldn’t leave.

Now this is the point in the post where I should make a vow that I won’t keep or put myself up for a challenge that I’m just not mentally prepared for. Nah, I’ll give that a miss for now. No Trying To Stay Out Of My Bedroom For A Week challenge. No I Promise To Only Use My Bed For Sleeping vow

Here’s what I’ll do, a compromise if you will, I’ll move my bed. To be fair, I’ve been thinking it a while. Well, like a week. I’ll start that in this post right now actually, so when I get home tomorrow I mean, because there’s going to be a lot to move, like, fucking hell, why do I have a arm chair in my room? (Surely that should be my ‘sofa’?!) (Mind blown) If I move my bed to the corner of the room, rather than the centre, I’ll have room to move, do my crafts etc. I don’t know what else, this experiment might not work.. But I’m giving it a go!! Because it’s not healthy to keep bed hopping and I really don’t want to catch an STI!

That was a joke. A poor one I know. Still a joke.

 

*When reading this to James he wanted me to include that although my bed isn’t the best in the world, he thinks his bed is;

“No, don’t add I think it is, say ‘his bed is the best in the world’,”

“Yeah, ‘he thinks his bed is the best in the world’,”

“No! ‘his bed is the best in the world’!”

“That’s what I said, ‘he think his bed is the best in the world’.”

People get so touchy about their beds.

“Get out of mine then if you think it’s not the best in the world.”

 

‘You believed in Santa for 8 years – try and believe in yourself for 10 seconds’

IMG_1182 1

‘It was actually 11 years,’ I didn’t want to give up that dream, but wise words from my boyfriend, James, there.

I’ve had the unpleasant experience recently of being graced with someones presence that loves to shit on other people. Not literally, that I know of, other wise this whole blog post would be about something completely different and I’m not sure I would want to go on. What I mean is bringing others down. Especially if they aren’t part of the norm. And hellooo, here I am, definitely not part of the norm. I am playful, I am young at heart, I love making stuff and I’m not afraid anymore. You hear me? I’m not afraid anymore! Name that reference.

cnv00010-jpg-1

“The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask.” 

“A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself.” 

Jim Morrison

I’ve always been an analyser so I’m aware if someone is insecure they like to bring others down to feel better, they feel powerless and so want to regain it. Even so, it still works, it’s not nice. Growing up I’ve always been sensitive (which isn’t a bad thing, no matter what others say) and now I suffer with anxiety and depression (which this person knew about!) but because of that I had to toughen up. I think that’s a natural byproduct of mental health problems. My whole life I’ve balanced along a line of ‘Emily, it’s cool, chill’ or ‘am I making excuses for others when really I’m not being sensitive, they were just being a prick?’ When you are younger it’s more confusing and you aren’t sure of the situation, it’s clouded in hormones, and I tended to question why they say stuff in the first place and then blame myself. I’m 26, I think I’m allowed to say when it isn’t cool.

Some people are just walking targets for those who are too self aware of what others think, and it comes to a point where you just accept it. Even take it as a compliment. ‘You’re attacking me because I’m not afraid to be myself? Cool. What does that say about you?’ I never have covered up, I’ve always been unapologetically myself and after this recent situation I’ve realised I’ve allowed myself to decide, I don’t need anyone else to guide me, whether that person was wrong or not – my life and my choices. That person was a prick.

 

“I am what I am, an’ I’m not ashamed. ‘Never be ashamed,’ my ol’ dad used ter say, ‘there’s some who’ll hold it against you, but they’re not worth botherin’ with.’

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire

I’m not going to lie to you, this incident brought me really down low, like phoning James at 6:30 in the morning crying low. Sidenote: I was walking to work, I didn’t randomly wake up crying nor am I just being dramatic with the time of day. His wise words lifted me a lot, which is where this title quote was slotted among – along with a lot more graphic worded ones.

 

“Power over others is weakness disguised as strength”

Eckhart Tolle

It’s hard when someone does stamp on you after trying to help yourself for so long. You feel like you’re back at square one. Especially if they are hitting all your triggers and checking off that list of things you dislike about yourself – even without you realising at the time. What plays on my mind even more is that I was so polite back, as usual. I hated myself after for that but at the end of the day it’s because I’m nice. That’s a good thing, self reminder, it’s a good thing.

Although I don’t think I would have felt better if it wasn’t for James, I love that I have gotten to a place where I’m like fuck it. There’s no other way to explain it than fuck it. If you’re the kind of person that kicks someone down for being themselves then you have a big problem, not me. Fuck people like that. I’m chill, I love who I am. What more; I’m proud.

So you may have noticed the random photos of things I’ve made or done, cushioned in with quotes from things I love, and thought it had no relation to the text – well that’s me putting up a massive middle finger.

(Not to you reading this, that’s just rude – that’s not me.) (Has the impact of that last sentence gone now? I’m okay with it.)

FH000002.jpg 1

“If you don’t love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?”

RuPaul

Thoughts After Therapy #3

img_3122-jpg-1

Written after my CBT therapy.

Thoughts 20/1/17

It’s always a much needed boost going to therapy. It’s like a routine of spiralling and thinking I’m going insane all week, then having a 50 minute therapy which explains what my brain is doing and putting some reason to it. Like the panic diary, it’s giving me alternative explanations to what I’m feeling which are factual and rational. Rational is what I need. I can see why people have therapy every week.

I struggled with the panic diary. I had an odd week in general so trying to write that down and finding an alternative answer was a challenge and tiring. Which, God Emily, obviously it would be. I have to carry it on.

I had two days of no anxiety this week (the doctor gave me some anxiety pills to give a go if and when I need it EVEN THOUGH I DON’T WANT PILLS ARHH) and that was bizarre. At the time I embraced it and danced. Literally. Which was super (that wasn’t a side effect, that’s just ‘normal’ Emily). But then It made me extremely sad that my ‘normal’ now is going to sleep thinking I’m dying. It’s still a positive though. It’s showed me what’s possible.

We worked out my health related anxiety cycles I spiral in. Pretty interesting. We have to start with the negative thoughts first – which the panic diary should help with and practising mindfulness. Little things like when I have negative thoughts try to concentrate on things and sounds outside of myself. I’ve dived into the world of mindfulness before so I know the difficulties and the rewards.

A positive

My anxiety and depression had gone down on those sheets you have to fill out. Plus, therapy made me feel better. I went in shaking and quiet, I came out and sang my worst in the car all the way home. Then ate lemon bonbons. I fucking love a lemon bonbon.

A negative

I didn’t talk a lot. I’m not sure if I’m meant to. I felt like I didn’t have loads to say really, and I’m sure that’s okay sometimes, but by half an hour she didn’t have anything else to say. I probably should have opened up a little more. It was one of those days when I felt like I would just cry at anything though, and not helpful crying, like uncontrollable and snotty.

Closing thoughts

Maybe having an easy life isn’t what we as a species need. She explained our bodies want to fight to survive, basically, that’s how we are still here. But we don’t have to now. I do have an urge in me to be self sufficient so maybe that’s that? I need to grow some carrots pronto.

I mean, all I can conclude from that is that I’m more prepared for a zombie apocalypse than my partner – while he’ll be chill, trying to befriend them and take them down the pub for a pint, the adrenaline would be pumping through me to karate chop their arses. Kind of. I am a fast runner, unrelated.

I won’t be at therapy next week, so next post will be on the 4th feb.

Thoughts after therapy #1
Thoughts after therapy #2

Thoughts After Therapy #2

img_3094-jpg-1

Written after my CBT therapy. As English lives are blanketed by snow at the moment it had to be over the phone rather than in person. 

Thoughts 13/1/17

I’m not feeling much. This week has been a shit storm, which had come after a 4 month shit tornado. Needless to say my brain was a bad home, but therapy didn’t make it worse… a positive through all the fog?

There was a lot of information which really helped. I’m a sensitive car alarm basically. (My brain spews up imagery of me screaming a siren whenever anyone comes close. That doesn’t happen. Well, metaphorically it does.) My fight or flight instinct is all mixed up, and if I don’t start fighting off some bears before I go to bed, it totally makes sense why my panic attacks come just as I try to settle down. I’m basically ready for the bears all day. I have a feeling this is only making sense to myself – which is okay.

We spoke about which route to go down first – so which one is troubling me more and would be good to tackle now. Health/general anxiety. There seems to be a plan in place which makes me feel hopeful.

My home work is to do a panic diary, to rationalise my panic attacks – try to understand symptoms of anxiety e.g. my body is responding to my fight or flight instinct. To give me an alternative explanation. Not during one OBVIOUSLY but she made it sound like eventually I’d be able to.

A positive

It’s making sense. When it’s laid out in front of you its not as confusing. I can see where my brain has gone wrong, and that it’s also not my fault. I’m not crazy! Phew! It’s frustrating convincing yourself you’re not crazy while not telling anyone what’s really going on in your mind.

A negative

Therapy on the phone – not my thing. Not anyone’s fault that England shuts down when it snows, the roads are a bloody nightmare, but I think I can still class it as a negative. My mind goes wandering and I always have trouble hearing like a little old lady. I think I have trouble with language in general but that’s probably my health anxiety diagnosing me with a few more things to round up the day with.

Closing thoughts

I didn’t cry… but should I cry? It’s because it wasn’t in person. But CBT is there to give me tools to help me, not counselling. I did well up talking about my problems this week. Wow, what a hell of a 4 months.

I dunno? Yeah. Just yeah.

Thoughts after therapy #1

Thoughts After Therapy #1

img_3072-jpg-1

Although I have the new year spirit animal bounding inside, a new chapter (and all that), it is only a coincidence that this is when my therapy has come up. I was put on the waiting list at the end of November but it coming up now was perfect timing really, it’s like the therapy Gods were watching over my life and just knew what was going on.

A boring brief back story is that I suffer with anxiety and depression. I had CBT therapy on the NHS two years ago which worked wonders with my social anxiety, and now I am having it again but mainly for my health anxiety and lack of umph in my life (which is probably the depression). I’m documenting and sharing my thoughts after because a) I like projects and documenting, b) I did it last time and it helped me, and c) it might help others?

SO, after my first session I wrote a few things down in my notebook.

Here are my thoughts 6/1/17

I feel positive about today. Hopeful. Not a lot happened, we didn’t dive in deep.

I could be mixed up because I had an okay day altogether. Maybe I feel good about just getting out in general. I love just being in the car with my partner with the radio on and I’ve only been in a very select few places for the last two weeks. Plus something new is always nice. Even if that something new involves tears and snotting in front of a stranger.

A different start to this therapy than my last. A different structure, a different feel, a different me probably. No, definitely. Not much anxiety about going there this morning other than the shits, but I file that problem under ‘it’s a family thing’. If I could file more things under unchangeable things like genetics, whether true or not, I might get by easier.

Hopeful. Reassuring.

It’s nice to be told it’s depression or anxiety doing things to your brain and that’s the reason there are question sheets you have to fill out is because WHAT YOU ARE FEELING IS COMMON. That question on a scale of 1 to 10 doesn’t exist because you personally feel like a bag of crap – but because it’s normal to feel like a crap bag. It’s still shit though, obviously.

A positive

Most of what I’ve written is positive, but one specific positive…

I liked the therapist. (Isn’t it difficult to look at ‘therapist’ without seeing The Rapist? Unrelated, of course, just being open and honest with my brain because THERAPY TELLS ME TO). But yeah, she was cool. I think it’s going to be okay.

A negative

We didn’t dive deep like I said. I understand why, don’t get me wrong, this is the first 50 minutes of a potential 300+. This was the introduction, as she fully stated. I can’t help but think I had more to say, but even now trying to think what that was.. I still don’t know what was missing. I’m sure through out the week things will pop into my brain and I’ll write them down for next time.

Maybe I don’t see which path I need to go down yet, because there’s never a singular problem is there? Let’s be real. Yeah, maybe I was hoping for an answer to my thoughts, but realistically that’s my anxiety speaking. The whole reason I’m there, needing certain answers, is irrational. It’s interesting to notice when you aren’t writing from an objective stand point, or neutral view, but actually your anxious/mentally ill brain. Which you probably are most of the time? All of the time?

This isn’t a big negative anyway, this is just the start of therapy.

Closing thoughts

It’s always nice to let stuff out and cry. To be honest, I cry all the time. I don’t hold it in. I cry if I’m happy, sad, angry, tired, excited etc. Good luck dating me! I’m a big believer in therapy and it’s a shame people hesitate to have it (even me!) so I’m looking forward to the process and extremely hopeful for it to help me.

 

Now the last line sounds very fake and makes me want to throw up on myself, but I honestly meant it.

Searching For Calmness 

In light of my recent darkness, I try to embrace any warmness, any positivity, that I can. I have explained this to friends in the past, for example; why I don’t like horror films. There’s too much darkness in my brain, I dont need it on the outside too. 

So although it almost feels fake drawing things like this, or trying to concentrate on warm things or light things, it kind of has to be done. Drawing myself spiralling further will only encourage the dark in me. Though one truth, there’s almost always laughter in everything. Even if it’s a dark sense of humour. 

Disclaimer after reading this back; I’m not a f***ing serial killer! Ha, all this ‘supressed darkness’. No sociopath here, just a Strange Case of Dr Dooming-Depression Jekyll and Mr Antisocial-Anxiety Hyde.