Looking back over my shoulder...

Wake up challenge this time was to look back over past challenges to see what worked.

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This challenge was to look back at what we forgot from the first year of Wake Up.

Mark asked me to remember what we had forgotten. To be honest as I read a lot of my posts I found it hard to believe how much I had forgotten. Autopilot has a lot to answer for.  How much of my life will I forget or have forgotten. What struck me most was the personal changes I achieved within that wake up year. I moved in with B after 16 years going solo and I went back to Uni. How could I have forgotten this wake up conduit of change.

There are a few challenges that have come to be part of my daily life, get up and hour earlier to achieve something, go outside in the morning first thing, and the other one which was to identify the one big thing for the day.  These three things really help me every day. I’ve made no secret that I suffer from what I call ‘low moods’, this is something that I have learnt to ‘cope’ with sometimes with or sometimes when it’s not so bad without medication. These are the things which have become my coping mechanisms. There has been radio silence from me (Mark – I apologise) but I’ve had a bit of a bad black hole period. I think it triggered by my Mam not being well and anger and frustration towards some of my siblings and just life in general. I won’t go into details but it was all that was needed to knock me off my equilibrium ‘coping’ state. When I had cried every day solidly for a week, had a couple of real road rage incidents, turned back halfway to work unable to imagine myself getting through the day and then spent the rest of the day unable to move, I knew it was time to go to the Doctors, I was thinking I was menopausal ( you see I am still find it really difficult to admit that I do suffer from depression) blood tests deduced I was not and the doctor had to tell me yet again she really did think that I needed to go back on the medication.  I felt defeated, and felt like I was letting myself down so much is my own prejudice about my own mental illness. A couple of weeks into medication all I can say is I feel a WHOLE lot better.  A different person even.  When you feel better it is difficult to imagine how bad it really was in the black time. This is why, I think people who have never suffered from depression find it so difficult to empathise and say ridiculous things like – ‘you do it to yourself’ and ‘pull yourself together’.

As it is with life timing is a funny thing. Sometimes something or in this case someone good comes a long just when you need it most. In the last month I’ve reconnected with an old school friend. She doesn’t live far away but between careers and families at different stages it would be fair to say we have lost touch over the last ten years. We’ve had lunch and this week we went on a rainy woodland hike and talked. She asked me how I got on with my blood tests , I decided to come clean and tell her the outcome. She then confided that she too was on medication for the last 12 months and it had really helped her. She went on to  explain how she thought about it, she said her husbands’ family was one of weak knees and hips, all of them needing operations in later life. ‘ My family’ she said ‘ and I suspect yours too, just doesn’t produce enough serotonin, that’s all it is.’ Thinking of it this way has  really helped me.  Life can be tough with all the responsibilities, as women we wanted it all, most of us got it but sometimes we got too much for one human being to handle. There’s no shame in admitting this and sometimes we all need a little help and understanding and even medication and if we do and it helps, so what?

So Mark, I forgot wake up for a while and how to have fun with life but now I am back.

Fiona Dolben

Acupuncturist, holistic therapist, content creator., Hemp Holisitics

I'm a single parent of ONE lovely lanky teenager.. I live in deepest rural Wales . My 'proper' job is in marketing and events but I am also a trained reflexologist, masseur and reiki giver (go figure!) I also look after my Mum who is in her late 80's, my dog Ted, my cat Black and my hens and goldfish...my dream is to have a small holding and offer people holidays in my teepee and maybe the odd therapy ....so as you can see I am a mass of contradictions.... I like to walk, do yoga, eat salad and visit new places but I also like to drive fast, Feast ice lollies, vodka on Friday's with friends(, which leads to dancing in my kitchen) my coffee , and staying up late... I can be outgoing but also extremely shy so like the rest of you I am still trying to figure it out one day at a time...


Go to the profile of Mark Cuddy
over 4 years ago

I've always enjoyed your posts. They are always deep and honest and I believe they reveal your true character. I appreciate the effort you put into them. It's brave to post the way you do. I've said it before and I'll say it again, this wake up journey's been amazing and I'm glad you've been part of it. I've also said that if I can help in 'black times' drop me an e-mail and I will do everything I can to help. It's at these times we need all the support we can get. And everyone of us gets days like these.

Without you, this ghost galleon could have been a lonely sail for me because believe it or not, I don't like the sound of my own voice. A crew of two searching for other's isn't all that bad. I mean, we're still enjoying it, aren't we? Yeah-yeah!

Maybe soon we might find some of our wake up family we seem to have misplaced over the last few months and they will take up the challenge and realise the journey was and is a great thing. Fingers crossed.

Anyway, thank you very much for your post, taking up the challenge and being brave to show up, we sail on..... take care shipmate. Captain Marko of the good (great) ship Wake Up 

Go to the profile of Fiona Dolben
over 4 years ago

Thank you Mark x