After my first blog I never thought I could be moved by the thoughts of my readers, god I actually have people that read my blog! While I am inspired by these messages I am also conscious that this is a serious topic.
It seems so logical to start the next blog at the beginning, my childhood and teenage years, but I’m not sure, do I need to provide more details about who I am now and how I got to be here before writing about who I was, who I grew up as?
Maybe I can combine both……
I grew up in a small farming community known as Tambo Upper, located between Nicholson and Swan Reach in East Gippsland, Victoria, Australia. I went to a private school, grew up horse riding competitively, and upon graduating from school worked locally. I know growing up I didn’t go without, horse riding wasn’t cheap and we had everything that you needed to have to be competitive. I was in the school senior band. I studied hard. One of the things I have learnt since being a depressive is that during those years I suffered from depression. I had everything but I certainly didn’t feel love. My parents did not show affection and I am not sure I could call it a home, more a place where I grew up. Nobody in my family were ‘diagnosed’ with depression, I say diagnosed because being depressed and being diagnosed are two separate things. While they would never admit they were depressed or acknowledge that depression and mental illness existed I think that both my mother, sister and my grandmother all suffered from a form of depression. How I come to realise that my parents, particularly my mother didn’t believe in depression is another storey……
But what about now…..Well I live in Narre Warren, Victoria with my 12 year old son and my partner of nearly two years, I was a researcher in emergency management and I am a passionate photographer. My son takes up most of my life, my conversations and my every thought. Without bragging he is an amazing sportsman (well sports boy), he is smart, and he is the nicest person you will meet. One of the things that I will always admire about my son is that from a very young age he was always there for me, consciously he was too young to realise but when I was in tears or down he was there to comfort me. I remember often, not intentionally, being in tears and he would always rub my back, hug me and say “Mummy its okay”…how does such a young person have such maturity? My son’s Dad left when my son was still in nappies, nearly two, from that point on I was a single Mum trying to cope with and live with depression.
I was diagnosed with depression shortly after the problems with my son’s Dad escalated and I started questioning what was going on (definitely another topic to write about!). I don’t think that anyone diagnosed with depression can say their journey to wellness has been easy, pretty sure in most cases it wasn’t, and it definitely wasn’t easy for me, there were serious ups and downs that early on I never thought would be something I would have to experience (something that you will learn about).
My storey has just begun, it is a journey I hope you will join me on as I increase awareness of depression, reduce stigma and provide a safe place for Mums like me to talk about their own depression…..
Parts of my storey are very confronting and some may find upsetting, if you find yourself upset and depressed I encourage you to ring Lifeline on 13 11 14 or BeyondBlue on 1300 224636.