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https://myjourneythroughdepressionitsoknottobeok.files.wordpress.com/2018/04/20180419_121259.jpg Depression, Anxiety, stress, low mood, sane, men’s health, men’s mental health, mind, blog men’s health, talk, depressed, anxious

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My Journey Sunday 22nd April. Depression, men’s health. It’s ok not to be ok!

Had a good day yesterday in the sunshine having a barbecue was very relaxing. Did not have the best nights sleep due to a sore back and an early wake up call from Barney.

I sat in the lounge with the bbc news on, I can’t even tell you what the news was and it’s only 4 hours later. Not in the best state of mind today but I need to remember where I have come from and this is just a minor down in comparison. I’m sure as the day goes on I will lift a bit but remember it does not last, on the road to recovery you can have down days but it is few and far between than the deepest darkest days of depression. I will be ok.

I am watching the London marathon and just thinking how brave they are for doing it and I’m not talking about the elite athletes, I’m talking about the charity runners, the average person doing what they can to support people out there their loves ones they may have lost, loved ones in recovery or for themselves it is a very honourable gift and they will all touch someone’s life today and hopefully help them. I hope one day I will achieve something like this for men’s health. I did some years ago manage the manchester 10k so it is in me to work hard and get running again.

Well I have just wrote a bit of detail about taking care of your appearance and it did not save I just feel frustrated, gutted, fed up that all my thought did not save. I will rewrite it in the hopes it makes me feel better that i managed to change my mindset. Some 50 minutes later I am writing it again, it went something like this: in depression sometimes it’s difficult to sort out your appearance, what do I mean by this… men don’t shave, gel their hair, wash, dress in the way they used to, for me it was nice shoes/boots, jeans, nice t shirt and now I’m not really bothered what shirt I wear or which shoes go with the outfit (yes men do think about it aswell but just arnt as good as women in matching.) Anyway my issues mainly are shaving and gelling my hair to make my appearance “smarter” something i struggle with in my darkest days of depression and since my relapse last week but I did manage to do it today, I was alone and chilled so I just did it, I battled in my head do I do it or do I leave it but the good came over me to do it. I am glad I did it I feel a bit better about myself, about my appearance.

Sat in the caravan feeling fatigued and in a low mood I struggled to sort myself out, I did however force myself to go for a walk to clear my head a good walk in the countryside is what I needed, So I decided to walk up Arnside Knott which for me is a mole hill compared to the mountains I hike up but not today fighting with my state of mind made it difficult but I battled through I am more tired from fighting with my thoughts than I am from the walk I just kept telling myself it’s my mind not my body and kept going. It’s a beautiful place overlooking Morecambe bay, the lakes and the mountain ranges where I hike up. I am now at ease, mind not racing, mood lifted a little and not feeling fatigued I believe it’s called endorphins that has been released in my body from the sweaty hike I just did. Now a walk back to the caravan through the farmlands and have a nosey at the new arrivals.

On my way down back to the caravan I saw lambs, calfs, hens and managed to get a couple of cow selfies which my wife absolutely loves doing for some reason. I got back and felt totally different, more like myself (not totally but more) my mopd had lifted so i showered, hair gelled and got ready to leave for the langdales, I feel refreshed, my mental state is in a good place and I can say I won today, I can say I have won every day even the darkest days becuase I am still here, I am fighting and winning which is all I can do to recover.

The journey over to the langdale was not the best in fact even before I got to the A6 and old man did not understand the rules of the road when on his side there are parked cars he has to give way, we nearly had pheasant for tea just shot out of the bushes I have no idea how I did not hit it and then there is a silly woman overtaking a cyclist on a blind bend with me coming head on, needless to say an emergency stop was needed by both a d the woman did not even acknowledge she was wrong. This left me with a 45 minute journey full of anxiety, I managed to calm down and was ok ish. So took Barney for a little walk before we got into the pub.

Remember it’s ok not to be ok as long as you tall to someone just like I did this morning I spoke with Julia and made the decision to do something about my mental state, it’s far from easy but you have to keep fighting.

My Journey Saturday 21st April. Depression, men’s health. It’s ok not to be ok!

I felt empowered sending messages to wigan council and leigh journal about the hazardous conditions I mentioned in yesterday’s blog it is a good thing, not only to sort out the mess but for me also to feel useful rather than useless, to show I care even if my emotion does not fully show it.

In the afternoon myself and Barney decided to complete the list of mundane chores and also add to it, which is a positive moment to remember, I just decided whilst the weather was nice I would mow the lawns; something i have been putting off, I felt good after it and so did Barney enjoying the smell of the fresh cut grass then Barney had a snooze in the sun whilst I relaxed listening to the birds and the feeling of the light breeze around me, it was quite peaceful. I just sat and took it in. It was sort of enjoyable. Bit difficult to describe the proper emotion. But well worth the note on the blog.

So after all this today which was very busy and good for my mental state, I packed up ready for a weekend away in the caravan…. Julia arrived home at a reasonable time ready to go. Barney was geared up too. Car packed and I felt positive ready for a good relaxing weekend in the lakes with my closest loved ones, well oh no it was not meant to be. The M6 was shut a major accident and major traffic queues, I did not care for the queues I only thought of the poor people in the accident. We decided to turn back and come home and watch the rugby ready for our journey in the morning back to the lakes. I thought numerous times about the unfortunate people in the accident and so did Julia, I also though I am lucky I have the biggest support around me, many many people there for me to have a chat if I need it

People I have not seen for some years and I feel very blessed to have these people in my life.

So our journey to the lakes was around 11am and it started off with traffic again, not even on the motorway but we are persevering as it is a glorious day and we need the rays of the sun. Alot of people do not know but not the North West of England many people suffer with low vitamin D deficiancy becuase of the lack of the sun. Something I did not know about until the doctor did blood tests on me, why am o saying this you may think well a low vitamin D deficiancy can cause depression it can also cause fatigue, low mood, Anxiety, tiredness and a few others Google it you won’t believe the benefits you can get from a supplement of vitamin D. Something I will be sticking to for a long time in the hopes if part of my depression is caused by my low vitamin D deficiancy I can help with with the boost of vitamin supplements.

Well it is lovely weather at the caravan, Barney has been for a walk to the beer garden and now I’m sat on the decking with capital on enjoying the sunshine, yes I said enjoying. I always feel so relaxed here and it always makes me feel better to be in the countryside. Especially in Silverlade, Lake District. Probably my most favourite place on earth.

Think Barney is too warm on the decking he’s asleep on his bed. I don’t think he will ever understand how much he has helped me through this struggle. Dogs just give absolutely everything for nothing in return and I am so happy to have his as my dog…. sorry Julia our dog.

It’s barbecue time later and the neighbours are having a party, not bothered just hope they have a good time. Just as we will with my excellent culinary skills. I will enjoy the sleep tonight I almost always do as there is very minimal noise well apart from the owl. I hope everyone enjoys the sunshine in the North today it’s not often we get it.

I will just like to say before I finish today’s blog and I have said it a few times it’s ok not to be ok as long as you talk to someone. I can’t reiterate enough how important it is if you are suffering in silence.

My Journey continued Wednesday 18th April – depression, men’s health, it’s ok not to be ok!

So i went to the doctors, it was tough, I decided to walk there, I left Barney in the house with a morning treat he was fine, I on the otherhand was a different story. On my way to the doctors I had time to think to breathe in the fresh air and calm down. When I arrived I though I am here again and would you believe the receptionist knew me and said take a seat Daniel you are next without me saying anything apart from “Morning” this surprised me surprised me becuase I usually never go to the doctors but clearly I have become a regular visitor.

The doctor was not my usual GP and someone I have not seen before but I must say she was lovely a d very supportive asking me lots of questions, telling me it is ok these things do happen. She agreed to sign me off work for another 4 weeks to help look after myself. Yes look after myself this is probably the first time I have truly understood these words even though I have listened to family, friends and colleagues I have also said it myself but not truly understood it till today.

I left the GP and walked home in the sunshine it was a lovely morning but I did not feel that emotion not yet anyway.

I got game and Barney greeted me with the biggest cuddle and face licking (yes I know to some people this is not nice) but it was just the greeting I needed it lifted me made me feel that tiny amount better about myself. About is ok to not be able to do your job it’s ok that your partner (wife) is the main bread winner, that material things mean nothing if you well-being is not where it should be. His tought me this and I can’t help but think she truly loves me no matter what.

I went to my mum and dad’s and sisters with Barney to take my mind off things talking to all of them really helped me, made me feel more normal. But what is normal? Everyone is different but you know when you are yourself again, which I felt, only in a small way but it was there the sign again you will be ok. Back to routines back to thinking about you and you alone hard to say as I think about family all the time but sometimes it has to be about just YOU.

Once you sort yourself out you can then care for others do not put yourself you will be under too much pressure,family know you are fighting an illness and they just want you back.

I left my sister’s and took Barney home who was snoozing in the car enjoying the breeze from the open window (don’t worry he is in a seat belt) I got home and I thought what do I do now so I looked at my post of jobs that myself and Julia wrote down the day before, this helped me I cracked on whilst Barney ate grass.

The mother in law (called Gill I will use from now on) came around to drop the ironing off (yes I know we are lucky to have the ironing sorted) also a good excuse for Gill to see Barney. Barney was elated and kissed and played with Gill before relaxing on his bed. Ad I have not slept well for a good 4 days I had an afternoon snooze. I woke up feeling better feeling groggy but better.

Soon after Julia arrived home and we had a good chat which helped fuether ease my thought my depression.

I cooked tea, washed up and had a beer to relax somethijg that I ciuld.not have done in my darkest moments but I again used CBT and the support of Julia to crack on whilst she dis school work. (I did not share she is a teacher) and a bloody good one at that and I’m not being biase!!

So now we are writing tomorrow list which includes psychotherapy. I will be nervous but I will be ok, I want to get better, I need the support.