Rant of All Rants…

I don’t write as much as I would like these days, the crippling self esteem issues make me feel like I have nothing much of interest to say at the moment particularly as the days seem to be exactly the same.

That being said I was visited by a very close friend who came over from Ireland just to give me a kick up the arse, which was much needed and it has given me the strength back to voice a few things that are bugging me!

Hold on to your horses folks and you may need to cover your eyes as this is going to get a bit sweary.

I am sick to the back teeth of people being snide, abusive and down right wanky towards me!

So here is a list of things that I am not…

Firstly as much as I would like to, I am not well enough to work! so you sending me messages telling me how you have to go TO WORK etc etc do not help me feel any better about myself. If I could go out to work and not spend the whole day worrying about where the toilet is, how my anxiety will cope with change do you not think I would be doing that?

I am not a cunt! I do not treat you like one so dont treat me like one in return! Whilst I spend time taking your mental health into account please remember that I have my own illness to combat.

I am not here to boost egos, confidence or just be used when you need someone to talk to. I see the pattern whereby when I need someone to talk to the invisible cloak comes out and I have to deal with things myself. It’s great to talk to someone as well as offer someone an ear but it has to be equal!

If you dont like something I say, tweet or post just fucking delete me, unfollow me whatever but do not message me moaning about it because I am not here to please everybody. I tolerate a lot of shit because I have worked damn hard to have some sort of reputation via this blog but no more will I be told what I can and cannot say! Kindly fuck off and take your opinions with you.

Because I didnt make plans to go to the other end of the country and fuck you it doesnt mean that you can appear every now and again with snide comments designed to belittle me and drag me down.

I am soft and weak when it comes to certain people but this is not an open invitation to use me when it suits you, I am not a door mat and despite first impressions I can do without you in my life. Step up or fuck off!

And the biggest thing that pisses me off is the amount of people that expect me to contact them first – no more me just giving if you cannot be bothered to send me a message, pick up the phone etc then time to say farewell.

I have depression, I suffer a lot with self esteem but with the help of Mary, Gary, Cougar, Sarah, Maria, Amy, Cindy, Caro and Juliana in particular I can see now how I am letting others destroy me because I do not stand up for myself enough.

When I am bad it would be nice if someone reached out to me, alas if I dont contact 90% of the people I know I hear fuck all from them.

Naturally people will automatically assume that they are being targeted by this post, but that is a sign that they have something to feel guilty about – as far as I am concerned keep that opinion to yourself because I am not interested in anyone bringing me down anymore.

And if you dont like it…. you know what to do!

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Operation Get My Arse In Gear Is All Systems Go

Despite the year starting as the last one finished I have now started the process of getting my shit together again and trying to move forwards, making up for lost time spent under a black cloud the past few weeks.

Today I went back to the Dr and finally told them how things REALLY are and what a struggle it has been, and still is to an extent. The great thing about doing this blog is that I can go back over the posts and spot the signs of when things are heading downhill so I am fully aware when the cycle changes from average to shit again. Okay maybe sometimes they are good too…

This week has been really positive in terms of shaping the future, short term at least because that is what needs concentrating on.

It is amazing how much the mood can turn when someone goes out of their way for you, my confidence has gone through the roof since miss cougar stayed. It was lovely to realise that I AM attractive and do have something to offer and that feeling of the shackles being snapped off in terms of the past few months was as much as a relief as knowing I do not have blue balls anymore…..

I have wallowed in low self esteem for too long, but in many ways I tend to force myself to rock bottom from time to time and I can be my own worst enemy when it comes to my depression. If I ever get of the fucking waiting list for therapy I will make sure this is explored further.

Speaking of therapy, surely almost 2 years of waiting is long enough? In that time I have had 2 “initial assessments” but the wait goes on.. something that I mentioned to my GP today.

I have a few ambitions for this year, money allowing and want to visit some places in the UK at some point. Once I get these poxy loans paid off I intend to start booking train tickets. I especially want to visit Newcastle as I have a HUGE thing for the geordie accent so would be in heaven up there. Bournemouth, Ireland and Liverpool (Irish and scouse accents are 2 and 3 on my list!) are also must see places this year for me. So any readers with a spare room and a love for jack daniels and cleaning up moose sick please get in touch!

As far as the loans go it is amazing how people with such bad credit get accepted in the first place but I have managed to clear 2 so far with 2 to go, I am touched at the people who sent me donations via this blog which were used to clear some of the payments off.  I am working my butt off to clear the others asap. Another example of being my own worst enemy. I am pleased that there is only one arsehole who tries to put me down via this blog, Asylum Heaven kindly fuck off with the comments they are trashed before approval anyway. Most people are not judgmental and understand  the issues I have are linked to my cycles of depression but for those who want to try and make me feel worse with your comments..I wouldnt waste your time because your comments wont be approved so you are wasting your time.

Things are improving day by day, I am in contact with more people and have had a few visitors to Moose Mansion already this year with a big one next weekend when a great friend from Ireland is coming to stay! It is important to have something to look forward to and I know she cannot wait to spend time with me 😀

Being famoose does have it perks! I will be strolling into Macdonalds with her using the old “dont you know who I am?” line to get a free bigmac or 2, failing that I will be walking out with more straws than I will ever need, who doesn’t love a freebie!

While I remember I have a facebook page that you should like if you are on there – for no other reason than I am a numbers whore click here to find it and share with the world! I am also still looking for guest posts for this blog, on any subject about depression, how you deal with it, if you look after someone with depression, how you cope with a partner etc etc

I love being able to give people a voice and cannot recommend enough trying to write to release some shit from your chest, it has worked wonders for me time and time again so dont be shy get in touch and send me your words of magic!

As we leave January behind and enter February remember that the year has still only just begun, things can get better if we give ourselves a little time and not expect overnight change – hard as that can be at time.

Here is hoping that I can create plenty of memories this year to share with you, even involving some of you as well – what would be better than a mooseketeers get together in London at some point!  Imagine that we can all wear something moose related and take the big smoke by storm!

And if miss cougar is reading this….maybe you can work some magic on the antlers this weekend!

flaccid-moose

 

Hanging On…Barely

Well the black dog has returned bringing an army with it this time, black clouds, thunder, lightning and darkness not seen for a long long time.

The pretending and putting on a brave face only works for so long before the eventual breaking down comes and the longer the game of pretense the harder the fall.

So here is where I am at currently..

Stuck in the payday loan nightmare where I had to borrow to survive post xmas and now have to attempt to repay the monies borrowed – of all the shit that has come with depression the fact that I am so bad with money is the biggest and most demoralising issues for me. For the next month I will be surviving on pretty much fresh air and handouts..

The other main issue is the fact that I am so  eager desperate to reach out to someone and remind them how I feel in the hope that the feelings are going to be reciprocated, even though I am 100% sure they are not… thankfully each time the long email/essay has been written I have yet to send it (thank fuck!)

Hiding away from the outside world because I just can’t face going out again – even though I am in need of a full-blown alcohol induced night out! but I have no one to go out with let alone money to spend on it.

My IBS is playing havoc with me again, I had a great friend come visit me yesterday and sadly for him he got an insight into how bad my stomach can be on days like this – a sure sign that I am highly stressed out/ anxious

I feel like I have to just get on with pretending to be alright because people expect me to be by now!

On top of this I received a letter from Atos with the dreaded medical form enclosed so lets look back at how things have gone since my last medical.

In Sep 2012 I had a lovely woman from Atos who did my medical (and yes she has probably been fired), who gave me 18 months to get my shit together, which I was doing up until the last six months…

I have lost my closest ever friend to cancer, my marriage broke up and I still don’t know the ins and outs which causes more issues, I attempted an OD, I am STILL waiting for therapy despite being on the waiting list for nearly 2 years and the GP I had so much faith and confidence in left leaving me with two new doctors to start building a relationship with. I am yet to feel like I can fully confide in both the new GPs so when I do see them its all about smiling and pretending to be fan-fucking-tastic..

Honestly I feel more like breaking down than carrying on at the moment and the more I try to fight this shit the harder it appears to be getting.

Thank God for Maria who comes round and gives me a hug from time to time because virtual hugs do not just cut it despite the well-meaning intentions…

It has been a long time since I gave in and let the tears out but at the moment I just can’t seem able to, why I do not know but maybe I am slightly worried that once they start they wont stop. If someone would only offer me a shoulder and an ear..

I am getting to the stage where I am well and truly sick of having to type about things via social media when I would rather talk about things..

So if you ask me how I am and I say OK, don’t be upset that you know I am not being honest, just know that I need more than the virtual right now…

500…

followed-blog-500-1x

 

500 followers of this blog is quite an achievement and I am extremely proud that so many of you want to read my moaning, depressing stories 😀

I hope (okay I KNOW), that I have helped some people with my experiences and I am so grateful to all the new friends that have come into my life as a result of this blog. People from all over the world, even some in my home town of London have become firm friends and without this blog I would never have met them.

So thank you for putting up with me, supporting me and reading my story without judging me. There has only been one person who has “trolled” me in the whole period of this blog so I know I am fortunate to have so many good visitors to this site. Keep the comments coming I enjoy reading them, and wish I got more to be honest.

It is heartwarming to be at the end of such support and long may it continue. The more people (especially men) we can get talking about depression the less stigma we will face and we can continue to educate the ignorant…

Thank you!

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 47,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 17 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

My Return…

You may have noticed a huge lack of blogging from me these last few months, even hiding this blog from you for a while.

That is because I have been busy doing a huge amount of thinking about what 2014 holds for me both personally and blogging wise. The last 18 months of this blog has been a huge part in my recovery but what I started to notice was that people were coming to me more and more for help with issues, then once I had offered an ear/advice etc I would not hear from them again and it was starting to drain me mentally and emotionally, so I took some time out.

Now I am ready to return to doing something that I enjoy albeit with a slight twist..

I want to step back slightly from the whole depressed moose thing, although keeping the moose alive and well in the process. Moose is a nickname I have had for over 5 years so it’s a part of me that I enjoy but I want to show there is more to me than depression.

I want you to see more of Garry and the person I used to be, the fun loving guy who enjoys a good drink, some karaoke and the company of people.

some call it bad singing - I call it entertaining.

some call it bad singing – I call it entertaining.

I have made some resolutions since the turn of the year and have stuck to them, all about increasing my positive thinking and focusing on the things I do have, the people in my life and not looking at who is not around anymore, who has let me down etc and thus far it is really working!

I feel positive and excited about what this year may bring and have plenty of plans to put into action. To the point that if plan A, B or C do not come through I have X,Y and Z to move forward with.

So while the domain name stays the same I hope that as well as posts on depression there will be a lot more to interest you, more humour, more positive posts and more experiences to be shared with you all.

Garry is all about the here and now and not dwelling on the past and it is really working well for me…

 

 

Mission Accomplished

I did it, I made it though Christmas unscathed. Obviously as you are reading this so did you!

I took time away from blogging yet the creativity has been bubbling away like the good old days where I could write and not care about how people perceived me.

I have suffered from no ANT issues despite spending the majority of the Christmas period alone. I needed it to be honest with you. I wanted to prove to myself that I could survive on my own again and it was a test that I passed a hell of a lot easier than I originally anticipated.

Of course there were times when the going was tough and I needed someone here, but I kept myself busy and rode through it all with the help of some great people who give and take when it comes to our friendship.

The kids had a great time and have been spoiled rotten, however it has come to my attention that I am indeed a spoilt bastard so I was very disappointed in my lack of presents this year. I could go on about bulging sacks but thats enough of my lack of a sex life for one day…

I have quite a few plans for next year and despite some already going tits up it simply meant I could add more things to do rather than dwell on what might have been, I intend to fulfill as many things on this list as possible and add some more along the way as things develop for me.

I would like to say that I have developed a thicker skin over the past few weeks but on closer inspection it appears to be more turkey, stuffing and roast potatoes than anything else. On the plus side there is more of me to love…

Good times are just around the corner and I will make the effort to go and search harder for them rather than wait for them to find me.

I feel positive about the future and have finally released people, and demons, from the past..

You cant hurt me anymore, I just faced the toughest challenge and sailed through. Everything else from here on in will be a breeze

Ending The Chapter…

This will be the last word on this subject until I have something to report in terms of an outcome. It has been  suggested that keeping something inside is preventing me from starting the new chapter in my life and I wholeheartedly agree.

There are things I have wanted to say but held back, things I needed to confess to help explain but more importantly I need to use my writing as a way of closing the chapter to enable me to find the strength to move on.

Let me make this clear before we begin, I love Sheryl still and would love to have her come back. This has to be something she wants though because I am done with fighting a battle that is not winnable currently.

However the five months since Sheryl left have been hell for me, as the time has gone by and I found myself getting better I made me want her here so that we could go out and enjoy each others company, have a drink and a laugh being Garry and Sheryl and not Mum and Dad. Then when the darkness came back it made me realise that I needed Sheryl to help me climb out of it.

There is difference between wanting and needing someone, and at my worse I NEEDED her to look after me, mother me in many ways. This is not good for a relationship but it was the illness not Garry. I have loved Sheryl since the first time I laid eyes on her, I knew she was the one for me. I wanted her, wanted to be with her and wanted to make her happy but the neediness depression cursed me with destroyed that.

I was guilty of treating her terribly, neglecting her needs and making her feel inadequate. I have to live with that fact. I could not provide for her emotionally, expecting to take not give. I spent too much time doing things on my own and not as a team, not involving her.

I was ill, although this may not be an excuse in some peoples eyes, believe me the depression has changed me in so many ways.

I stopped being the man she married.

I have held on to ALL the blame for it going wrong.

I completely understand why she left, although I do not know the reasons fully.

However

There are two sides to every story and it takes two to work on or break a marriage.

When you are rejected nightly for years and not allowed in the marital bed it will give any man self esteem issues, it ate away at me and is a big reason behind me being the way I am now, in terms of confidence.

When you are constantly checked up on, to see if you are doing things you shouldn’t be, it causes resentment.

When you have to question if you are loved, something is not right.

I can walk away knowing I tried, boy did I try, to reconcile. I never wanted to lose Sheryl but in her own words “don’t bother fighting – It’s over. This was said 3 days after she walked out.

Now as my friends will know, I do not believe you can stop loving someone overnight, sure you can fall in and out of love with someone – that is why it is important to keep working at relationships – but to suddenly feel nothing? sorry call me a fool but I don’t believe it. Be that as it may I have to accept it and can’t keep sitting around waiting for reality to catch up with her. I have to let it go for my sake.

The last time we were physically together was in August and she couldn’t say it was over to my face. The proof has to be in her actions as she wont look me in the eye and say words.

When I took my overdose I text her to tell her what I had done, no I dont know why but when you reach that point you do not think clearly, she did not once try to contact me to find out if I was out of hospital let alone still alive.

That is not the action of someone who loves you.

I have held myself back for too long now hoping for a miracle and now the time has come for me to stop kidding myself.

This is the end of that chapter we shall refer to as “The Breakup” let me now start working on the next phase because I have some plans and changes in mind that will, eventually, see me improved in many areas.

Couldnt Stay Away Moose

Ok so I really tried to stay away but in the words of Michael Corleone “everytime I think I am out they pull me back in”.

So an update for you as to what has been going on since last we saw each other.

Marriage wise it is all over, and my heart is broken. I don’t blame her for walking away from me as my depression obviously took a huge toll on her. The poor thing must be completely worn out physically, emotionally and mentally and whilst I wish things were different and that I could wave a magic wand and make things better I know life doesn’t work that way. I will always leave the door open in the hope that we can talk one day but at the moment it’s not an option and I have to accept that. It is not what I wanted and I worded things wrongly in the heat of the moment, wasn’t the first time and probably wont be the last time I fuck up when my intentions are good.

So bad news out the way back to the depression….

what depression!

For the past 4 weeks at least I have had no depressive thoughts or fears. My phq9 score has sat on zero for the whole time. I have been going to the gym 5x a week and have lost 20 lbs since February and currently weigh the lowest I have in years!

I have seen my GP about coming off my medication too. He was amazed at the change in my persona when I walked into his office let alone the weight change, and this was before I told him what had been going on in my private life! He nearly fell off the chair at how well I was doing and we are now in the process of gradually decreasing my medication in preparation for coming off completely.

It works like this

2 days normal dosage, 1 day half dosage the gradually increase the number of days I have the half dosage. 1 day a week, then 2 days a week, then 3 and so on. It will take a few months to come off the medication and I expect that some days/weeks will be worse than others but now is the time for me as I haven’t felt this good for years!

One thing you all know about me is that I am a fighter and the depression has been knocked from pillar to post the past few weeks and we are now entering the last few rounds and the strongest will survive, that will be me! I’m not going for a quick knockout I want this to be a battle to the last bell when depression will have so much knocked out of it that it wont want to face me again in a rematch!

To paraphrase Charlie Sheen

I have moose blood in me and I am winning!

 

Help! I think I have Depression…

Of all the messages I have received from people since starting this blog the thing that is asked most to me is the question of whether that person has depression. This stems from recognising a lot of themselves in my posts and it is great that people feel confident enough in me to reach out and ask for my advice. It is not as easy as you think contacting a complete stranger and asking for help, you just don’t know how that person will respond. Will they ignore your message, or dismiss you out of hand? so kudos to everyone who has ever sent me a message, I hope in my own way I have helped…

So what do you do if you think you have depression?

Believe it or not the fact that you have asked yourself that question is the first and hardest part of your journey. It is all to easy to simply dismiss the issue and put it down to sadness, but when you are feeling low for days/weeks/months on end with no change then that should be the warning sign you need to consider depression as the cause.

Depression is one of those things that will not go away if you ignore it! (a bit like me!)

What next?

This is where I come in handy! if you click PHQ9_depression you will find a questionnaire that is used by your GP to assess whether you are depressed and if so to what extent. Answer the questions with complete honesty and work out your score. Depending on that score you speak to your GP as soon as possible.

When I first saw my GP about depression I was in the early 20s!

Talk to my GP? <Shudders>

Whilst I appreciate how difficult this can be for people what you need to remember is that they have heard it all before from other patients. They will not judge you any differently for opening up about this nor will they call the men in white coats to take you away!

Most GP’s will be kind and understanding about it, i say most because the wife was once told she wasn’t depressed but “suffering from the stress of life”!! but the majority will help you and determine whether you need to be prescribed anything. Some surgeries even have GP’s who specalise in Mental Health so you could ask to see them if you do not want to see your normal doctor ask at the reception where they can advise you.

Whilst you are meeting your GP remember to tell them everything, holding things back from them because you feel embarrassed or ashamed will not help you get better. Tell yourself that they have heard or seen worse and let it out! I cried like a baby when I finally spoke to my GP, it was a feeling of relief to not have to hold it in anymore and knowing that there was actually something wrong with me! I no longer had to hide my condition, I was just pleased I wasn’t going mad like I thought at one point!

Antidepressants? good or bad?

I can only speak as I find and for me antidepressants have been good! I did suffer from a side effect from the first ones I was put on but after speaking to my doctor I simply changed them onto ones that work just fine.  I notice if I do not take my tablets like I am supposed to, which indicates they do the job as far as helping me goes.

Take them if prescribed and talk to your GP about any concerns you have!

Talking about depression?

Telling your friends/ partner / family is a difficult decision with all the stigma attached BUT in my experience it is better to be open about your condition especially to those affected by you on a daily basis. Not only does it help you by not having to hide it, they will be able to offer you support. Well some people will and others not so much but then the ignorance of others is not your fault (my great-uncle for example is in his 80’s and does not believe in depression!), those who matter will be there for you in the long run.

As far as I am concerned the more people we have talking about depression, especially men, the better. I would love it to become an everyday topic of conversation instead of the taboo subject it currently is.

Talking about it will actually benefit you! Believe me when I tell you that sharing your thoughts and issues will make it easier for your recovery. This blog is an example of how much talking about depression will help! It was the best decision I ever made to start sharing my battle with other because things do not sit on my mind and weight my down, I blog about it and it is off my chest and that improves my state of mind!

If you are not sure about the benefits of writing how about doing a guest post for me to see how cathartic it can be!

If all else fails you can always contact me but remember that I am a sufferer of depression and not a medical professional and I will always direct you to see a doctor! but I will always answer any questions as best I can!

So there you have it! looks nice and easy doesn’t it?

I know it isn’t easy but think how much better you could feel if you take that all important first step. After the first step the rest gets easier because you will be getting stronger for acknowledging the issue!

ASKING FOR HELP IS A SIGN OF STRENGTH NOT WEAKNESS!

and may I be the first to wish you the best of luck on your journey!