Tag Archives: mental-health

My New Clowns!

Evening from Oz, Everyone! 🙂

 

Those of you that have followed me for some time now, would know I’m a clown collector.  

I’ve collected clowns for 18 years now and every-time I find something that takes my eye? It’s as if it’s my first purchase! I’m like a kid in a candy store and love every single clown I’ve collected. 

No way can I pick a favourite as they are all my favourite!  Hahaha 

I suppose suffering with Depression they filled me with colour and happiness! Walking into the room makes me happy! 

I had to share them with you. Sorry for those of you who  suffer,

Coulrophobia: The fear of Clowns

 

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They are each about 20 inches high.

 

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Look at those faces, how can someone not like clowns? 🙂 

 

 

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Wishing you all a great week! Hugs to you all. Paula xxxxx

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Mental illness

As most of you know,  I’m now a massage therapist.

When I first started researching what would be involved and how much learning there would be, I never read or saw anything that would show the health benefits it would actually bring to me!

I remember the very first massage I did. My shoulders where up high, and the tension I felt due to over concentrating on the moves I had been taught was huge!! My brain was saying to me that it was too stressful, and maybe I should learn something else? God if this was relaxing, how can I feel so stressed?? This isn’t a fun job!! Lol

I knew I had to change my thinking and learn to relax my shoulders and somehow move my body to the movements. You see this is critical in being able to sustain your working life as a therapist, otherwise you can cause an injury to yourself! Game Over so to speak. 🙂

The amount of theory I had to learn was ridiculous, and at times overwhelming. So do I throw all that away? Or, somehow find the confidence to believe in what I had been taught, and know that it’s more than likely just the negative side of me preventing me from going forward.

That’s when I told myself I’m going to forget about the muscle groups, bones in the body etc etc etc. It was time to trust in that whole conscious/unconscious part of the learning we did. And, that’s when the penny dropped and I realised I didn’t have to remember. My brain knew it all I just had to trust in myself.

Then one day it all just felt so natural and peaceful. Yay, is this what it feels like to massage someone!!  My shoulders are down, I move with the movements and each move comes naturally without thinking about it. Finally!! Lol

It’s now been 9 Months and I’m loving it. I’m feeling very relaxed and at ease with myself. God, did I just say my mind is at ease?? So funny because for me personally…this is a massive hurdle to have overcome! 🙂 It even feels weird to say that I’m at peace! 🙂

Going through the ECT treatment I had 1 year ago (Shock Treatment) My ability to remember and retain things was crazy! There was no rhyme or reason to what I remembered.

Kind of like ground hog day everyday for my poor friends and family. How I learnt anything back then still amazes me. I suppose persistence beats resistance, right?

Finally,  what’s this post all about?

You could say it’s about believing in yourself, and not giving up on you! Bipolar is a horrible illness but one made much worse from Ignorance. We will always have those days when everything seems just too hard. But we can also have and lead very productive and fulfilling lives too, just like the rest of our community. I say never give up on you, no matter how many others already have. If today’s too hard? Then try again tomorrow and if it’s still too hard? Try again the next day and so on and so on!!

Remember these words from the Desiderata:  If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

I believe I’m very lucky to have the support, encouragement and love from my family and friends. What I appreciate the most is them not treating me any different from anyone else. You already know your different, you don’t need to be patronized. Unfortunately not everyone that suffers a mental illness has this kind of support.

Maybe you know someone who is depressed, or who is suffering a mental illness? If so, do you realise how powerful your words of support are to them? You can turn an otherwise very dark cold lonely day into one of light ,hope and sunshine.

Praise is the greatest encouragement

These lyrics are so appropriate to those of you who are feeling down. If you get the time? Listen to them… and hopefully they will inspire you!

Much love and hugs to you all. Paula xxxx

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Depression Exists

Hello Everyone,

Hope your all having a great week! 

I thought about whether or not to show you my tattoo, and then I remembered I promised to show all parts of my world this year.

So without further ado, welcome to my tattoo. A huge part of my world. 

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A lot of tattoos come with their fair share of stories and mine is no different as it holds great meaning to me. I didn’t just wake up and decide I wanted a tattoo at 43. It was after I had survived my attempted suicide nearly 4 years ago that my son mentioned the idea of me getting one. At first I laughed it off, but after loads of thought it started to make complete sense for me to go ahead with it.

You see that day I woke in hospital 4 years ago, I didn’t want to live, not even a tiny bit! I was incredibly unhappy. The lights were on but no one was home. It was like I had lost my soul and I didn’t know where to find it. Darkness surrounded me and all I felt was deep pain and sorrow.  In fact it took 1 month in hospital and 15 ECT’S ( Shock Treatment) to make me realise that I did want to live, I just needed to learn how!

After every tear a person could possibly shed I knew in my heart of hearts I could never let this happen to me again, or put those that love me through such pain and sadness ever again. Unfortunately being Bipolar only makes this even harder to do. Somehow I had to learn to love me and forgive everyone around me that had hurt me so badly when I was younger. The only way I could think of this,  was to tattoo myself to remind myself that that day in hospital when I said I wanted to live? I had to have something that would always remind me of this.

So the fairy reminds me that I made a wish that day to somehow find the will to live. When I’m low it’s a constant reminder to seek help when I’m sliding. I put my Sakura at the bottom as she’s my child and has pulled me through many many dark nights. I needed her close by me as she fills me with unconditional love and strength. She’s much more than a cat to me.

The fairy’s dress being pink was for my favourite colour.  I had them tattoo really bright colours so it was in my face… and boy is it bright, agree?? 🙂

Whenever I’m low?  this is a constant reminder to get help and to do it quickly.

The tattoo is very large and it’s on my right thigh.

Now I realise I was hospitalised in March last year for some of the same reasons, and you could argue the point that it hasn’t really helped me, right? Not true though. It got me through 3 years without being hospitalised. It was me and my psychiatrist that made the decision to hospitalise me last year.  I was extremely suicidal and very close to not being here. But it was the the tattoo that reminded me to seek help. You see I smile when I’m happy and have learnt to hide behind that smile when I’m sad. I learnt this as a child. So it can be really hard for those who love me, as they see me smiling and at times wonder if I’m really happy or not?

Have you or anyone you know, ever had a tattoo to remind you or them of anything? There are many stories behind tattoos and I would love to hear yours.

Hope I haven’t shocked any new readers seeing this huge tattoo on my thigh.

Many hugs to you all, Paula xxxx

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I love this.

I saw this on Facebook today and had to post it.

Much love to you all. Hugs Paula xxx

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Living with a black dog

Hi everyone!

My son’s girlfriend showed me this really helpful guide for people living with depression and people living with people who have depression.
It’s called: “Living with a black dog” and can be purchased here.

The site has other illustrated books that help control other mental illness such as Anxiety, they were written by a man who also suffers and as such they’re much more relatable.

In a collaboration with the World Health Organization, they’ve released a narrated video of the book.
I think everyone should check it out as it’s very insightful and helpful.

Hugs and kisses! 🙂
xoxo

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Depression Exists

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Hey fellow bloggers, hope all is well with you all! 🙂

You probably have noticed that I’ve commented on some of your posts, but once again have neglected my own blog.

I did say I was ready to return to blogging and that I had most of my life all sorted, but the truth is I suppose it takes longer to fully recover than I realized, or at least wanted to accept!

To go through what I did was pretty horrific and to be honest I think I was being a little optimistic about my recovery. To return to everyday life seems easier than it really is, the fact that I had become suicidal and was put into hospital isn’t really that traumatic to me; now I know you’re all going: “WHAT THE”, right? 🙂 I’ll explain, you see being Bipolar can come with many things the average person doesn’t have to cope or deal with, unfortunately some of us were just genetically dis-positioned right from the beginning.
For me, it’s not rare for my brain to think suicidal thoughts; the difference is knowing when or if you’re going to act on them. There are many people with Bipolar that deal with this, not just me and I truly feel for them. At times I can get confused with what exactly I’m thinking and at what level is the depth of that thinking, is my brain just obsessing and playing with the idea?
Can I reason with it, can I ignore it, or am I going to push the limit to see how far it will take me to the darkness?

My brain almost plays with the idea, it’s like a continuous questioning inside my brain and yet there isn’t any right or wrong answer, that’s the part that scares me. Damned if I do and damned if I don’t. Kind of like having schizophrenia, yet you don’t actually have schizophrenia. It’s like this constant chatter and questioning of yourself.

When I get really bad, my mind almost dares me to do it and once again all rational thinking is gone out the door! Life for me growing up was very traumatic and I had many bad things happen; although I am safe now and nobody can hurt me anymore, my brain when unwell, plays the bad events over and over. Some so much so, that I can’t cope and all I want to do is go to sleep… but I don’t ever want to wake up. I often wondered: is it today, or will it be tomorrow that I can no longer keep fighting the darkness.

My doctor has told me I’ve climbed mountains in my life and made it to the other side, that the past can no longer hurt me; I know he’s right, but at the time that is NOT what my brain tells me!
I suppose you could call me a working progress and believe me I can’t wait for the day when my past no longer controls my present!

I have a lot to live for, but when this happens to me I can’t see how to get there. This is why I’ve had shock treatment in the past, it works much more effectively and quicker than anti-depressants to stop the suicidal thoughts.

So what was so horrific about me going to hospital? It was the fact that I WAS about to act on those feelings and had lost all reasoning inside my brain and all I wanted to do was give up on life. Everything felt too hard when all I wanted was peace and happiness, but it wasn’t there because my past continues to plague me, the problem is; I don’t like to talk about what’s going on in my brain when this happens. For two reasons: One, I don’t won’t to worry anyone and Two, I struggle to let people in and I shut down.  If it wasn’t for my boyfriend insisting I went to my Psychiatrist, I wouldn’t even be here to write this. That’s how bad I was. Once again the past had taken control of my brain and I wasn’t able to stop it.

When I’m in remission: life is grand and everything has it’s place and I smile from morning till night, but when I become unwell, all logic flies out the door!  To me there’s nothing but obstacles and it’s at this point when I need all the love, help and understanding I can get! When this happens to me, I believe it’s not really me; it’s that little girl that gets lost inside my brain and she can only see the darkness which terrifies her, and she becomes frightened all over again. The past becomes the present, and the present seems like a distant dream.
She cries on the inside and smiles on the outside, because that’s how she survived the trauma; nobody could hear or see her pain and so she learnt to hide it. This pain went on for years before she finally got strong enough to say, no more! Yes, I am now a woman but I think there’s a part of me that’s broken and I must find peace for that girl inside or she will always be broken.

Life is definitely better than it was for me in March of this year and I’m thankful to everyone that has loved me so much to get me to this point, everyone deals with all kinds of hurtful things in their lives and I suppose we just have to work through one thing at a time. We have to forgive those that have hurt us so badly and somehow find an inner peace within ourselves. The past is the past and we have to look forward to the future or we will never really find true happiness.
Their poison will keep festering within our souls and bleed through our veins, so we must flush the poison out.

If you have dealt with trauma or know someone who has? I hug you and my heart truly feels for you. We have to try and move forward  to a bigger brighter more peaceful future.

Those that have hurt us have already robbed us of so much so lets not allow them take anymore, we all need to take back control of our own lives and destiny. A life where they no longer control us or our thoughts.

Remember, What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger! Believe in you and how strong you are to have made it to today, and every other day before that. You may not feel strong, but you are! You are reading this which tells me you are looking for ways to heal yourself and that’s how it starts, people say to forgive and forget; I say forgive, but never forget because we must remember to never allow anyone like that into our lives again. Trust is not given it’s earned, I wish you well in your quest for happiness and to heal yourself. May the universe or your god keep you safe and give you the life you truly deserve; One free of pain and suffering.

Right now I’m reading a book called:  8 Keys To Safe Trauma Recovery
By Babette Rothschild

My Dr recommended it to me. If you feel like reading a self help book on Trauma Recovery it’s not bad. 

Those that follow me regularly, please do not worry as I am healing and doing all the right things.

Exercise is the main one and believe me it works. Those happy endorphin’s are running through my blood. 🙂

I wish you peace love and happiness.

Hugs to you all, Paula xxxxx

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Health Update

Fantasy Fairy

Hey world, how are you all? I have so missed you and your blogs.

Well, I came out of hospital like I said on the last post which was my birthday. I was relieved to be back home with my Sakura and my birds, Pippa and BJ.

I was allowed home on the condition I have maintenance ECT’s once  a week. So I go into hospital every Wednesday, have the ECT on Thursday morning and come home mid-morning. At first I wanted the Doctor to stop them as I had enough, but the truth is I think I need to keep up with them. Why you say? Okay, I’ll tell you! Lol

You see when you have Bipolar, life can be darn right tricky and at times you can be fooled into thinking everything is okay… When really, it’s not. Admitting you have a problem isn’t an easy task, actually far from it. Someone like me, who likes to smile and joke around, finds it difficult to come out and say “I need help”. I tend to keep it hidden deep inside me and it takes all my strength to hold on and not let the negative thoughts take over my head.

I love everyone around me and I have a great support network of people who love me,  but when you’re sliding into the darkness you try hard to not take them with you. In saying that, those around me want me to offload the burden onto them as they feel it will make life easier for me. As mush as I would love to do that, I still haven’t found the courage or the strength to reach out for help and take them into my darkness. There are times when I am alone and cry and ask God if he is real, please save me and let me have peace in my mind just like everyone else. I’m not religious as many of you know, but I’m a good person and feel if he is real he just might answer my prayer and one day make me free from this illness.

When I go into hospital my heart goes out to so many of the people there. We all take life and our health for granted, but what happens when our mental health goes haywire and we are left with this burden of trying to work out what life is all about and where we fit in the big picture of it all! I have a great life, filled with great friends and family, yet when darkness knocks at my door? I can try to ignore it but in the end I’m forced to answer it because the bell won’t stop ringing. So I let it in and then I’m forced to work it all out. Now at first it ignores me and stays swarming all around me, engulfing me in its darkness. But I want – and need – to live, so I have to look deep inside my soul to find the courage and strength to beat the darkness.

I stay away from dark coloured clothes as my Doctor says this is a good thing to do. I love black so I force myself into brighter colours when darkness looks like it could win. Some days it’s all so hard and I just want to sit down and say, No More! If it wasn’t for all the people I love so much I really would just give in. But NO!! I won’t and can’t let those that have loved me so dearly in life feel punished by my death. When we die a part of everyone that has loved us die as well, and that’s not fair.

There are many parts to Paula, and even though she fights the darkness, from time to time another part of her pushes her to keep going because happiness is there and soon it will engulf me and not the darkness. I will be free and happy and this is what keeps me going.

I appreciate every single one of you that has sent me well wishes, and your strength gives me courage to keep going. I am more than someone with Bipolar, I’m a mother to 2 beautiful sons (22 and 30) I’m a sister to 4 brothers and 1 sister, I’m an Aunt to 15 children, Mother Cat to my gorgeous Sakura and my 2 birds 🙂 I’m a friend to many beautiful and wonderful people. And I’m a girlfriend to an amazingly beautiful  man who has stuck by my side through all this ugliness that took over my body and tried to claim my soul. It’s all of these reasons that I’m fighting so hard to keep on track. And I will succeed for I can’t have these people’s lives ruined because I wasn’t strong enough to fight the battle with in.

I felt as if I should share this side of me. This is a blog about Depression, right? I am making myself be honest about my thoughts and feelings, baring myself to you. No one likes talking about Depression, but it’s real and it’s engulfing and terribly ugly. Breathing is like hyperventilating and you wonder how you’ll get that next breath out. It’s cruel and lonely no matter how many people are on your side you feel alone.

To anyone out there suffering in silence, I embrace you and urge you to tell someone, don’t be alone and fight the battle with no one on your side. Reach out to anyone that you trust and ask for help. You’re not crazy because your suffering with Depression – or any other mental disorder… You have just hit a bump in this things we call life. Don’t isolate yourself for you are a wonderful human being that deserves to be here as much as anyone else. Saying you need help is not a weakness, it shows great courage. Don’t give in, for you are worth the fight. I may not know you but I know your pain and feel your sadness. Tomorrow really is another day, so hold on and reach out for help. You’re beautiful and I know that there must be people around you who would support you and be at your side in a flash if they knew that they could lose you. Be strong, and hold on to whatever makes you happy.

Before I go, I just wanted to tell you all that I miss reading all of your blogs. Please forgive me if I don’t get around to answering or reading all your posts. I will do my best, but like I said it’s not a great time for me so I can only do so much right now. I really wanted to just touch base with you all and let you know where my health is at. I will give it my best shot to check out as many blogs as I can. But I’m not sure how far I’ll get. Much love to you all and I’m so grateful to all of you that have stuck by me during this dark time in my life.

Many hugs to you all, Paula xxxxxx

image source

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