Monday, 3 December 2012

Cheers to the future.

So I sit here writing another chapter in my life for everyone to read. So how do I approach this blog after quite a year in my life. A year in which I have learnt a lot and hurt a lot. Again I want to make a brief point, I know there are people out there in much more difficult situations than me and I'm thankful for what I have.

I think firstly I have to mention todays visit to see my doctor. I won't describe it as a pleasure to see him but it was nice to know that I am making steps in my life. He has said he can see the change in my attitude and has said to stay on the medication for a bit longer and see him in a couple of months. There is a number of reasons I'm feeling more positive and I need to keep focused on those.

Over the last weekend I had to meet up with my ex wife, I honestly wasn't looking forward too it because of the memories that I get. We went to discuss some joint finanacial commitments, which went fine and no issues. What happended outside afterwards was quite a big deal for me. I had a text a few weeks ago from her asking if I could explain to her why I had ended our marriage. I was shocked and confused, because I had made this clear when we split, so I decided to tell her again the reasons why. I was composed, polite and concise explain about the alcohol, agression, money etc. I felt empowered and a little overwhelmed with how and why I did it. I walked back to my car holding back the tears, not because I was sad, it was because I took a big step by telling her again. Then I sat in the car crying, I had to, I haven't cried for a long time like that. It felt good, it felt right but there was one thing missing, someone to give you a hug and give you reassurance.

I put my Christmas tree up a few days ago and realised that its the first time I've ever put a tree up on my own. It's either been with a partner or around my family. So this year I bought a new Christmas tree and popped some music on and it wasn't too bad, for a bloke. These are all small steps.

I have made so many great friends thoughout the year and had some fantastic experiences. There are way too many to list and those of you know me have heard about most of them. I want to refer back to my charity walk, a day of so many emotions and a day that meant so much. Knowing that people will benefit from a few hours of hell was so worth it. If you havent't read about it please do http://whycantalllovebelikethis.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/inspirational.html

Times change, people change but friendship never dies. If a friendship means that much to you, tell them, fight for it, never let it go. I will always tell the people close to me what they mean to me. I wish I could spend time in a room with a lot of you guys and I'm sure we would have a great time. So here is to the future and what it may bring. I hope many of you stick with me and I'll stick with you.

I give all my readers, who are friends, my deepest grattitude.

Thank you x


Friday, 16 November 2012

What is it like?

I got told off this week by a friend. I deserved it, becasue I said "what's going on in my life is nothing compared to what others have to deal with"

Reading and writing that comment down is difficult, thats because it's how I feel. There lies the problem, how I feel, is something I can't always explain.

I went to the doctors a couple of weeks ago to get some more help. My doctor is also a friend of the family, so the conversations are much more honest, so I trust him and his advice. I talked with him about certain concerns of my health and my mental state. He decided to prescribe me with Mirtazapine, I had to tell him that I was uncomfortable with that after the problems with Prozac. He gave me the reassurance they were different and also talked through my other issues in his own "honest" way, just to say I'd rather not say what those are. The new medication also contains a sedative, so the first few times I took it I honestly felt like I was drunk when I woke up, however they have helped me sleep. I will be back to see him in a few weeks to see how I'm going.

So to put it in a simple term, I feel like I am living in a bubble. I want to let people in but it's a delicate place and I don't want my world damaged. I like structure, I like things to be simple, I like things to be going alright. I am now starting to realsie, becuase of honesty and help from others, its not always fine and dandy. I see the signs better and still have low points.

I was very fortunate recently to meet up with the lovely Costa Posse again with our newest memeber Hayley. As always with the guys, you feel so welcome and have a great time with some truly inspirational people. You feel humbled to be around these people because of there own stories. Everyone clicked brilliantly with Hayley, Paul and their friend (who's name fails me, sorry) and you know you've made new long term friends.

The same weekend I went to see the fantastic Tristan Mackay in Leeds, with my best buddy. We've seen him perform on his own a couple of times but seeing him with his band was fantastic. His album, which I strongly recommned, has a lot of meaning for me. His lyrics are very deep and emotive, so I truly enjoyed my night out. After the gig, as has now become the norm, we had a chat with Tristan. He was asking how I was getting on with dealing with my deppression and said he can relate to what I've gone through. It's still quite overwhelming that I get to meet these kind of people and the fact they have taken the time to read my blog, thanks Rach.

Please if any of you relate to this and haven't been to get some help. Please make the step to go see someone. Suffering on your own, or keeping it to yourself, is torture. I still keep certain feeling and thoughts inside but I can't let these out, well not at the moment. As long as they stay in my head, then I will be ok.

Depression is still a dirty word and is very misunderstood, don't suffer in silence.

So just to end on a better note, the fantastic Tristan Mackay, I Found You

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hX3GIdMQqzU

Thank you x

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Why?

Hi to you all reading this and as always I am truly touched by the responses I get. It is sometimes overwhelming when I am contacted by others about how my blog has moved them or aspects of it help them out.

Last week I took the descision to publish my blog on my Facebook book page. I've always kept it away from there because of having people who I grew up with and family. It felt quite liberating moving into this realm and felt like a monkey off my back, but it isn't all positive.

Some people think I live my life in social media and can't understand why I write a blog. I have tried to explain and to some degree jusitfy it. Let me list the reasons why I write it:-

FOR ME

I didn't write it for any other reason. The reality of the blog is my side of events and like any story there are two sides, it's also my life. I find writing it and putting into the public arena a way of removing the burden from my shoulders. After talking to my doctor and the counselling service about what I am doing, both have said that if it works I should continue. I read a lot of blogs and have met someone wonderful people because of their fantastically written blogs. Lots of people say "I wish I could write a blog", please don't delay and get writing.

I spent days last week in a very dark place and thinking of removing myself from social media as I felt like it was a bad thing. I felt my life was being judged from a distance and I was doing something wrong. I stood and cried, then looked in the mirror feeling hollow, alone and honestly quite worthless. In previous blogs I've explained about how the depression and the marraige breakdown has made me feel a failure and unable to talk to family. It's is incredibly difficult to explain this to people and I hate making people feel like I'm pushing them away. Also you feel like you are a burden, we all have busy lives and sometimes you don't want to say "help me please" even if you only need a call, text or a hug. There will be people reading this who as always there when I need them and give such amazing support to me and I am eternally grateful.

It came to a head on Sunday night, I woke up having a an anxiety attack. I sat on the end of the bed and the next thing I knew I was waking up laid on the floor 2 hours later. I have know idea what happened but it really scared me. After speaking to the doctor and being very reluctant to put me back on medication, they have suggested relaxtion techiniques and maybe meditation. If anyone has any suggestions, I would greatly appreciate them.

I want to make a final point and this will not sit well with people, but I need to get it off my chest.

I write the blogs from the heart and put a lot of effort into them. I am realistic and know that people talk about these amongst themselves. People in my life chose not to read these and I fully respect that, however if you have comments please tell me no matter if they are negative. I have broad shoulders and will take any comments on the chin. Don't go running to others and saying things that you won't say to me.

Thank you all and much love and remember: if something makes you happy, don't stop doing it.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Caring

Hi to you, yes you reading this. I appreciate all the views I get on my little old blog and the support you give me.

So it's been about a month since the last blog and quite a lot has happened. As some of you may remember I went cold turkey on the medication and it was the right thing to do. The last few weeks have had some ups and down, however I am learning to deal with things better.

I spent a fantastic week helping out with The City of Lights and their first tour. I must admit to being somewhat apprehensive doing this, for a few reasons. Firstly, I was taking the job of my best buddy Rachel, she is always the one doing the merchandise stands. Mainly because she is much better looking than me and the way the bands t-shirts look on her, it's a boob thing!
Secondly I was going to the gigs on my own, this is a new thing for me. It was York, Manchester, Leeds and Huddersfield and at each gig the boys got better and better. The home gig in Leeds was unbelievable, the place was rocking. Also Rachel was able to attend and surprisingly we sold more merchandise that night, I told you she models it better!
The night was quite emotional as it was the biggest gig for the lads and in their home city. The room was filled with music and pride, their friends and family seeing how far they have come. We are lucky enough to know the parents of the guys and they were so overwhelmed and also thankful for all the support they receive. I'll also add an aside here, the band have a surrogate parent in Rachel, she is wonderfully protective of them, as she has supported them from the start and if it wasn't for her I wouldn't know anything about them.

This is them performing on Saturday night in Huddersfield and without a doubt are amazingly talented.


Then on Sunday, we were back in Manchester to see the remarkable Adam Barnes. In a small intimate venue I got introduced to Adam and what a humble guy, so welcoming and friendly. The room we were in was almost like a old chapel and Rachel being Rachel decided to start a new trend of sitting on the floor, it soon caught on, with other gig goers sitting down to enjoy the music. It was a great night and Adam performed at his impeccable best. Please check him out on You Tube.



Now stepping back from the music gigs I have been to. I have been fortunate to meet some wonderful people over the last few weeks. I recently got to meet Liz Ellis and Sarah Firth from twitter and we all got on really well. Sarah works for a local cancer charity, doing amazing work and Liz is very hugely inspirational having survived Hodgkins Lymphoma, plus has a lovely fiancé Anthony. I have been accepted in the costa posse and made to feel very welcome. Last week I was fortunate to meet more members of this group include Mark, Elaine and Dan, what a truly wonderful bunch of people. All with their own stories and each one not only pulled on my heart strings but also filled me with hope. We had a great laugh and I have to share a couple of funny moments with you from the afternoon.

Dan arrived and was greeted by everyone and introduced himself to me "hi I'm dan, you must be Anthony, Liz's fiancé?" Now Liz is fantastic and we have only met a few times but thats a bloody fast relationship! It was all fun though.

I then told the posse about my mum buying 50 Shades of Grey and how it seemed a bit wrong, then we got talking about each others blogs and I said "have you read my blog?"
Dan said "oh yeah, its badly written and I really didn't enjoy it" 
At this point I was starting to feel very uncomfortable and Liz was trying to help me out by defending my blog. 
It then became apparent Dan was still on about 50 Shades!!!!

I'm really looking forward to seeing the guys again soon and dragging along Rachel ;) and also meeting a addition to the posse Haley from twitter who has just finished treatment for cancer. It's funny that we are the same age and share the same birthday, must have been separated at birth. All these gives are a massive inspiration and I'm honoured to know them.

I also have had my assessment for counselling, which I found very tough, having to admit to my feelings. It was only a 45 minute assessment but afterwards I felt like I had done a full days work. Telling a complete stranger things like, I felt a failure, I'd let people down, I'd been suicidal and that I hated myself at times, was not pleasant. I have been classed as moderately depressed, which I suppose is not too bad, I now have to wait six months for the counselling to start. Personally I blame the Cameron and his bunch of wankers for this delay. 

This is where I come to the title of the blog, yes I know its been a long one and I've waffled along as I usually do.  I really thought that people didn't care and I know this is completely wrong, but that is the depression. A lot of people in my life show how much they care, each one in their own way. Some people with a phone call, some with a hug (I love hugs), some with a text saying "alright knobby" but each one makes me smile. I've made a conscious decision to really be myself in everything I do, you take me as I am or not at all. The people who care about me know who and what I am, they know my story and still chose to stand by my side. I promise to each and everyone of them, you'll see and get the best of me.

Everyday I am getting stronger and realising who I am again. I am not hiding behind anything and being something that I am not. If you want to stick with me you are more than welcome, if not I will push you out of the door when its closed ;)

Now to finish a song with some great lyrics, just have a listen and think about it.






Thursday, 13 September 2012

Cold Turkey

Hello everyone,

I'm back to have another little ramble and firstly say thank you again for the continued support, kind words and smiles. It really is very heartening to hear from people who are going to get help.

It's been over two weeks since I started on the Prozac and being honest it's been horrible. My mood has been extremely low and the "dark clouds" I talked about have returned. After speaking with numerous people about the medication, I've decided to come off them and go cold turkey. I don't wait to take something, that makes me feel false. some of you may think that this is silly, not giving them chance to work, but I know that coming home from work and going to bed at 7pm is not living. To be honest, looking at it as I type this, I'm only just surviving. I have been pushing people away and in my mind damaging friendships, which I refuse to do. It's more improtant to have my friends by my side than taking this shit.

I've felt worthless and a failure recently and this is not me, it truly is the medication. My referral is now in place for the counselling and I'm having to wait till the beginning of October. If there was a pill that would make us happy I'm sure it would have been invented by now, but for me Prozac is NOT the way. I'm starting on the healing process and made a big step this week by selling my wedding ring. I couldn't wear it anymore and seeing it in the house was quite upsetting. When I handed it over I felt like I was handing over a part of me that had died.

Please understand that this is only my situation and medication works for other people. I'm going to get back to exercise to fill my time and also might even offer my brownies for sale, as they as gorgeous.

I know this is only short today but I needed to get this out of my system. So today is the start of no more medication, no matter what the doctor says.

Thanks for reading and your continued support.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Memories

I have to say that I was truly overwhelmed by the response to my last blog. I admitted to depression to help me on my journey, never did I think it would help others. I have had a number of messages from people wishing me well and also from others who are going to their own doctors. I wish I could thank you all face to face as social media can be so faceless and I wish all of you the best in your own journeys, we can and will do this.

So to my new blog and I have to say I never plan a blog, you probably agree when you read it. I was sat this morning and thought to write about how I'm drawing on my own memories to try and help at the moment. I know when I have my counselling I will have to pull memories from inside that will hurt once again, then learn to lock them away. I have to be honest and say that pulling the thoughts of the last 2 years fills me with dread and still upsets me. I need to not feel like a failure about the events of my life, over time I am sure I won't. When I am relaxing my head doesn't always join in, it can be more active than I want, that's when I have to really battle to stop being pulled down a dark alley of thoughts. I know that is a strange way to describe it, but inside that's how it feels. This is when sometimes you feel you want to text someone, look at a photo or just remember a happy time. We all need reassurance sometimes, that feeling that people care and want to be a part of your life. A part which you will cherish and would do anything to keep hold of, no matter how difficult it can be. 

If something means so much to you, no matter what others do to try and damage it, you will fight. I can speak about this will first hand knowledge.

In the last year I have met some fantastic people, all of which have helped me to create some wonderful memories. I would never have believed I would be friends with so many fantastic bands and seeing their journeys and that all came from being told my music taste was s**t. I have also met some inspirational people recently who have put my own journey in perspective. 

If any of you feel like you are in a dark place and are struggling then look inside yourself, find a memory that you know will make you smile or laugh. Pick up your phone and text someone you know will help. You can't change your past but you can craft your future.

Remember to not sit and think you are alone, we are in this together and we will defeat it no matter how long it takes.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Coming down with a thud, but coming back like a Phoenix.

Well here we are again, a new blog and once again a new change in direction. Thank you all for reading the last blog and letting the language pass ;)

So off I go again........

Today was like any other day when I woke this morning. I knew it was back to work after the long weekend, which was fantastic after attending such a memorable wedding. I had to go to the doctors today as I have really been struggling with my sleep.

If I managed to get 2-3 hours of good sleep I was lucky, the rest was spent tossing and turning. I'd resisted peoples advice that I should go, but it had gone on for far too long to ignore anymore. I was feeling lethargic, short tempered and my mood was all over the place.

I probably have been living in denial and in hindsight should have listened, but I was fearful of what would be said. In my head I was expecting a quick consultation with the doctor and be given some sleeping tablets, this was hopeful.
I sat and explained about the breakup and the violent night terrors I was suffering. She confirmed something, that like I said, I already knew.

I was suffering with depression.
There I said it, I am suffering with depression. I know there are millions of people out there who will be in a much worse situation than me, but this hit me like a steam train.

I never expected to suffer with depression and especially after spending so long with someone who dealt with it. I thought I would see the warning signs, the truth is I did and I choose to suppress them inside. Thinking about this now I was fearful of being a failure or to be deemed as weak. After much thought, I think I am stronger because I have finally decided to get help.

My doctor was fantastic and took her time to listen to me closely to work out the best course of action. When she mentioned about medication, I think all the colour ran out from me, I wasn't sure what to expect.
Would I be on these for life? What are the side effects?
She told me that she want to prescribe me Fluoxetine (prozac) for a month to see if it helped with my sleep in conjunction with Phenergan and wanted to reassess me in 3 weeks. Also she thought because of the reasons behind my breakup that counselling may help. She could tell that I had withheld so much and I needed to bring it out and then understand how to then lock it up in the right place.

I have attended counselling session with my ex wife for her depression but never for myself and I would be lying it if I said that I'm not nervous. I have to remember to tell myself this is a new start and will help, also I am under no illusions that it won't be painful. I know this will be worth it and have some many fantastic people around me to offer extra support.

Please understand that I writing about this as a starting point for me. It may make someone else think that they may be having a problem and get some help. If any of you reading this can offer any words of advice etc I would be very grateful. Also on that note if you feel unhappy about my blog post please don't be nasty, it really isn't helpful.

So here is to a journey, who knows how long or how tough, through depression. I will come out the other side, stronger and wiser.

Thank you for reading and I will keep you posted.