Reasons To Be Thankful

Reasons to be Tankful

Well, after yet another brief disappearance I am back.

Oh, ladies (and gents), I am sorry for being quiet recently. In all honesty, life has been quite a trial recently and I have had to move my blog down my priority list a little, in favour of paid freelancing work, time with my children and time for nurturing activities for myself (namely exercise, seeing friends and playing my ukulele – I can do a few songs now! Badly, but still! Actual songs!)

Also, the last month has been fraught with illness. Firstly, Squishy had a chest infection, which he was treated for. The cough never really went away, and was further treated with two more rounds of medication. It still didn’t go away. In fact, it got worse. One night, on the advice of a nurse at NHS direct, we ended up at A&E at 12am because she was concerned his breathing wasn’t efficient enough to be getting him enough oxygen. Of course, after driving 25 miles to the hospital and being told by the triage nurse that it would be almost 4 hours before we got to see a doctor, Squishy was fine and was entertaining a group of tipsy youths who were in for possible broken limbs after various drunken escapades. Oh, to be 18 again.

Anyway, after a scary couple weeks and multiple doctor visits, he is now recovering. The cough is still ever-present, but we are double-dosing his inhaler (on doctors orders) and it is now improving. Thank goodness.

Then, to top it all off, we had a stomach bug over the weekend. FUN. Well, we were quite lucky actually. Monkey, bless him, was sick a few times but after about 10 hours of illness he suddenly bounced back and was as right as rain. I, however, felt like a hundred tons of crap. Thankfully I wasn’t actually sick (I have an iron stomach, I swear) but this all meant that I couldn’t go to a halloween party that I’d been looking forward to for months.

Oh, and also, I have new medication for my PPD/regular old depression/PMDD/whatever the hell is wrong with me, nobody seems to be able to tell me. I haven’t started taking it though, my plan is to see how I fare this month (I only seem to get very down in the two weeks leading up to my time of the month) and then start if I can’t find other ways to pull myself out of it.  OK, I know that sounds really bad. You can’t just pull yourself out of depression. But in all honesty, I really haven’t been trying at all. I just want one more month to attempt to kick it by myself.

But you know, there is some good to all of this.

  • We are completely broke, and in all honesty I have no idea how we will cope in the months to come, but it is teaching us how to be more economical and how to curb our somewhat frivolous spending.
  • Squishy and Monkey’s illnesses have made me feel so grateful that, in general, we are all in good health and needn’t worry about multiple hospital visits, medications and treatments. Although it looks like Squishy may end up being asthmatic, I am hoping that he will grow out of it like I (and Monkey) did.
  • I may have missed my party, but I saved some money and got to have an evening spending time with my lovely husband – and I got an early night. Asleep by 10pm. Bliss.
  • Going to the doctors for my mental health issues was scary, and I don’t want to take the medication, but I did finally get a referral for cognitive behavioural therapy. Just have to wait, now, for a phone assessment to take place and hopefully they will deem me depressed enough to help me.
  • And, as always, I have two amazing, beautiful children who have taught and continue to teach me what life is really all about. I have a wonderful husband who never ceases to put his family first. I have a great group of friends and an incredibly supportive family.

Sometimes, there’s nothing like a barrage of shit to make you realise just how lucky you really are.


  1. says

    Great to see you back :)

    You know it *is* possible to pull yourself out of depression – it just requires a lot of very hard work and an acknowledgement that it’ll take a lot of time and not just one fixing-thing.

    If you want to do it drug-free, I’d love to be able to support you with it – I wanted to, and found it so frustrating when people encouraged me to take anti-ds. I wasn’t against them for other people, but it wasn’t what I wanted to hear. A bit like when you want to bfeed and it goes badly and ppl encourage you to stop, I suppose!


    • says

      Thank you Clare xx the medication thing is always a bone of contention for me. I have nothing against psych meds, i try to avoid them like I would any medication if I can get by without but I have taken them in the past with little side effect. they worked great for me at the time and I have no regrets. There’s just something in the back of my mind that’s stopping me this time, and intuition is a powerful thing I guess.

  2. Michelle says

    Hi Imogen,

    Sounds like you’ve been through the wars, its amazing that you are still able to see the good side. I’m battling with depression myself at the moment and trying to manage one day at a time. Need to make a doctors appointment. Ugh.

    Look after yourself and your little alternative family,

    Michelle xx

    • says

      Thank you Michelle. Sorry to hear that you’ve been struggling. I really hope you get to see the doctor soon and are able to find a treatment plan you’re comfortable with. Look after yourself, too xx

  3. Michelle says

    I’m going to try taking St John’s Wort this time and get some talking therapy as well. I really need to get some exercise and time to myself, but its so hard with a full time job and a lovely but demanding toddler. Hey ho. Chin up – this too will pass :) xx

    • says

      I totally agree, it’s so hard to find the time to do what you need to do to ease it. Prioritise as much as you can, Michelle, your mental health is incredibly important to you and your entire family – it’s worth putting some other things on the back burner if you possibly can x

    • says

      I’ve at last discovered how to get exercise with the kids around, in a way that doesn’t involve awful DVDs – my mum passed on her old bike to me and we bought a bike trailer. The older two can cycle pretty fast now, so the small ones go in the trailer and we cycle wherever is close enough to do so. Saving money and great, exhilarating exercise :)

  4. says

    So happy for you to have been referred for CBT, looking forward to hearing how you get on with it! WAY more positive than drugs. I have finally accepted today that I am back on the nutty mental rollercoaster after trying to avoid thinking about anything too much and over-exerting myself in total avoidance activities (cupboard sorting, clothes sorting, cleaning, re-arranging furniture &c &c). All I have achieved is more mental fraying (panic attacks) and physical exhaustion, and still isolated and depressed… So I’ve got in touch with the local NCT person and will see what happens – start things off gently.

  5. Nicky says

    Imogen – you just totally tuned into my life – am really struggling with something hormonal and battling not to take pills (after years of battling depression and OCD I think giving people pills is often the medical profession being lazy) Thing is its so easy to think its the same old problem but I don’t think we pay enough attention to the impact monthly hormone cycles and deficiencies etc can have.
    Also am still breast feeding twins and everyone I have spoken to has basically said – give up bf so that you can take pills – have tried explaining how important the bf is but they just not getting it. Anyhoo – found this web page for things to do/ take for PMS after loads of my friends recommended suppliments (mostly Calcium and magnesium, vit B6 and progesterone) I know its more pills but less scary ones… and it explains the hormonal bit really clearly with other good pointers:

    such a relief not to feel alone (thank you!) and that its not who I am – its happening to me!

    Also got referred to Re-think who work with Mind and the NHS and they are brilliant at all sorts of really practical help. I got referred through my health visitor to Home Start (who have been amazing) who referred me to Re-think so managed to avoid the doctors – but you could ask for a referral from your doctor. They also suggested that I ask my GP for a referral to a specialist to get my hormones checked cos if there is an imbalance there is loads they can do.
    Hope things get better! let us know how you get on!

  6. Naomi says

    So sorry to hear your struggling. I also know how much it sucks to be back on that roller coaster. If your symptoms are worse, or only crop up 2 weeks before your period, have thought of trying red raspberry leaf? You can take it as a tea several times a day, or in capsules once a day. I always get so down before my period, and I took the capsules once, and they really, really, really helped (you do have to take them every day, not just before your period). I’m not sure you can take them if you’re breastfeeding, but you can look into it. Also, when my depression was worse (but I didn’t feel it was bad enough for prescriptions) I would take L-5 HTP (tryptophan) as needed and that helped a lot too. These are both more natural ways to help with depression that you might feel more comfortable with than prescribed medication. I just wanted to share what has helped me in the past. Good luck!

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