Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Reflections :: Feb '16

Hello there, long time no see. I realise I had planned to write my reflection posts monthly and I feel like I should be in a confessional as it has been 6 months since my last Reflection but sometimes it is hard to know what to write when you don't know where to start. So this is me, starting.

As I look at bringing TRW into a new lease of life 'Reflections' will become a bit more like a 'Letter from the Editor' or "Behind the Scenes' into my life. I'm not great about writing about myself, heck I barely like having my photo taken but I realise that in the modern age of blogging injecting more "me" into posts is what readers expect and it is then another chance for me to step out of my comfort zone, so I hope you will be patient with me while I do this.

The last six months have been a bit of a whirlwind, emotionally, mentally and physically. After coming back to my beloved Melbourne in September after my first visit back to England since starting my travels and turmoil in my personal life as well as the stress of applying, and finding the money, for sponsorship in Australia to stay and live my life I started to sink into a funk. Work became busier and Melbourne Spring Carnival added in extra work hours and long days, don't get me wrong I enjoyed this but it began a spiral that I didn't see happening, until it was too late.

By November I felt lost, tired and trapped. The Melbourne I had grown to love felt like a cage and with only single days off at a time instead of two days it became increasingly harder to get out and about exploring further afield. I did manage to escape to Kangaroo Island - pictured above- and those two glorious days in South Australia picked up my mood a fraction. Nights out to concerts with good friends helped but my self deprication overtook and the funk continued into December.

December... well I can barely remember it if I am completely honest. Long hours in hairdressing around Christmas rush can be brutal in any country and with the weather being so good the guilt over having a duvet day can be crushing. Back in England I would not have thought twice about staying in my PJ's all day and watching movies as it would have been winter but in Australia the British mentality follows and you feel the need to make the best of every sunny day you get as your don't know when your next one will be. It was around this time I withdrew my application for sponsorship. With other factors weighing in that would have made me have to do this anyway it was the most sensible decision at the time. A weight was lifted and I looked at things in a new light.

An amazing friend and confidant went home to Europe and long work days turned into long nights of partying. Christmas disappeared in a flash and the homesickness came crashing in. It wasn't until a few days later when I ended up in hospital after collapsing on New Years morning and hitting my head hard I really clicked that my depression had come back, something I have been battling for around 10 years now. I thought back and saw the warning signs, funny how after sight can show you how much they wave their arms at shout at you, anxiety, panic attacks, I wasn't eating and drinking, barely sleeping. Exhaustion had caught up with me and my body had just decided, enough was enough.
In this i found a new strength. I found myself wanting to help them through, show them there is life after the bad spell, and there is.
So January as my friends put it "Started with a Bang". I was signed off work for a few days to recover from my eye injury during the fall, luckily all is well with this and I am very aware of how incredibly lucky I am to be in one piece right now, so I took the opportunity to catch up on sleep I missed, force myself to eat and drink more water. I'm not sure I have ever felt so physically weak even though I had a similar experience a few years ago, it wasn't a patch on this. Even in the good weather depression can catch so many people and after chatting to other travelling friends and friends in Melbourne I trusted, it is a bigger thing than most of us think.

I found friends telling me they were ashamed to feel this way, that they thought they should be more grateful for what they have or that they didn't understand how hard depression actually makes it to force yourself out of bed in the morning. In this i found a new strength. I found myself wanting to help them through, showing them there is nothing wrong with how they feel, show them there is life after the bad spell, and there is.

As January turned to February I feel back to a semblance of normality again. I declined to put back through my sponsorship again in favour of travelling. Australia is still somewhere I want to live my life and I am so incredibly grateful for everything that my boss did to apply for and nominate me for sponsorship, I honestly don't think I have found someone who could have believed in me more, but at the moment, in my heart, I know staying is not the right choice for me.

The road is calling and if I stay I will only replay the events of the last six months over and over. Now I look forward to my parents visit in two weeks and a visit from one of my longest friends from England who is making an incredible journey to come and visit me for two weeks. Planning my next steps, my next travels heals me. I now believe I'm not really born for a stationary life. Being on the move, while peppered with its own problems, gives me purpose.

So if you managed to make it this far in my post thank you and am so grateful you have taken the time to skim over my first explosion of me, of aspects that quite frankly I never wanted to share online. I hope I will see you again in April for another.


  1. Love you emmy poo, I know how overwhelming and everything depression can be, I'm going to miss you so much.

    1. I'm going to miss you too darling, I think it will be the best thing for me though. Of course this does mean you have to save up to come visit me in the UK x


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