It’s been close to a year since I wrote my last blog… and I know I’ve mentioned my inconsistencies… but this is dead set taking the piss isn’t it!!?
So… here I am… on the eve of presenting to 300 students at a Youth Summit… I figured it was time to pull my finger out.
You see, the thought process was, if you googled me… the first thing that comes up in the search engine was, “Renee Gartner and her battle with depression”, that’s a pretty intimidating thing to pop up – it shouldn’t be in today’s society – but it is.
I didn’t want it to define me… I said it almost two years ago when I was fresh out of the fishbowl, that I wouldn’t let it define me. But I went on a date once… yeup, the old girl gave it a crack… and the bloke said, “oh yeah I looked you up, you tried to kill yourself or something??” (sidenote – the dickhead still showed up… but let’s just say I put the beer to bed and hit the frog and toad).
But people like this dickhead stopped me from writing, I didn’t want it to affect my work.. I didn’t want it to affect meeting people… I didn’t want it to be on google.
It has taken me this long to realise that’s why I bloody started talking about it in the first place – to have it on an open format, because that starts the conversation yeah?
My name is Renee Gartner, and I STILL have depression. It STILL affects me, day to day, week to week… and any kids reading this – look away now… hell it even affected me mid stride once! How’s that for timing!? My boyfriend at the time thought I just got swept away in the emotions of love… I was probably more upset I had to fake it… again… just kidding… kind of… but seriously – that is depression. It doesn’t wait for an invite as to when it is convenient to hit. (Just in case you weren’t clued on to the first article “When’s your next fight?”… “Everyday.” )
If so, I’d opt for when I was dead… yeah… let me live footloose and fancy free now and THEN – post last breath – do your best champ! Wouldn’t that be delightful!
Like I have said in previous blogs… (click here to catch up What is Brave? ) It’s not brave to have this conversation – the word brave is reserved to soldiers or survivors of exceptional circumstances. Not for someone with an illness.
It doesn’t just chose people in unfortunate circumstances, be it monetary, genetically, geographically, male or female… it just is!
I have super mates, some have come and gone along the way, but such is life. I have a belter family – we agree to disagree on many things but that’s what family does! But sometimes for no reason at all I just want the ground to swallow me up. There is emptiness behind my smiles, there are tears in the shadows, there are moments I can barely put my feet on the floor, and those when I slide down the inside of my bedroom door because I can’t bear to leave it. I’ve tried to drown myself in the bottom of the shower many a time… I think after the amount of investigation I have partaken in here, it’s fair to say it’s not possible. (I’m taking the piss with the whole drowning in shower here… but I do just mean I’ve sometimes found it stupidly hard to leave the floor and even more impossible to try and roll the shoulders over in an attempt to freestyle… can breastroke but… we’re still talking swimming yeah?)
((As you can see I’m still a bloody clown also… with the bad comes the good and with the good comes the bad.))
I have also had it hit me in the middle of a football field when I’m about to go live with a national audience… I always thought I concealed it well until I saw the below picture… haha whooopppsssss.
This is me arguing with myself that I just need to get through the next hour, please don’t fuck up, please don’t fuck up…. Please don’t … – Hi I’m Renee Gartner and welcome to… and so she goes and nobody knows… except you do now… but you also know that I am capable of getting along with the job – as I did this night and I as I have done so many other times!)
The best way to compare it in my train of thought, is back to the old VB advertising days of the ‘hard earned thirst’, “It can come at any time – you’re mending a plow – or chopping a bow – matter of fact…. I’ve got it now!” ((SEE BELOW))
Depression is like that hard earned thirst… (can you tell I like beer yet?)… it can happen any.bloody.time.
I guess where I am going with this blog tonight is that I need to take my head out of my ass, as do we all – let’s talk more. I’m starting with our youth tomorrow – I’m going to stand proudly in front of 300 teens and tell them my story in the hope it opens them up to the fact, ‘it is ok, to not be ok. (another old flashback BE OK WITH BEING YOU. )
We will meet dickheads in our life that don’t understand or make us uncomfortable in our own skin – but truth be told, they’re probably not comfortable in theirs either. So speak up, ask for help, offer a hand to those that don’t ask for help themselves… and if people find out your deep dark secret that you have an illness that has taken more lives than our roads… wear it as a bloody badge of honour that you could possibly be not just saving your own life – but your ripple effect could be saving others!
Safety in numbers ya mad shaggers!