Someone at work asked me the other day what it is like to have a mum with depression. I was like, I dunno and a bit dumbfounded by the question. ‘What’s it like with your mum doing XYZ?’ I wanted to ask.
She’s just my mum to me.
I work in the mental health sector, so I don’t talk about my mum’s illness very much, except to close friends. Mum got sick when I was in year 8. I remember back then mental illness was all hush hush and Dad told us we could not tell anyone. Then after a few years, it was clear that it was an illness that would come and go (bastard thing this depression is).
My parents made a decision to tell all their friends about it and Dad said ‘buggar it’ if people didn’t understand. There was such a stigma about mental illness back then in the 90’s and I am so proud of them for doing that.
Some days are good, some days are bad. Some years are bright, some months are dark. It’s easy to focus on the negatives and what things are difficult for my mum but instead I wanted to share with you this mother’s day why I love my mum so much and why she is the strongest person I know.
She lives her passion (teaching) and is one of the few people I know who live their passion every day. I am sure she will be teaching till the day she dies.
She keeps herself busy (probably a bit too busy)– like mother like daughter.
She tries new things.
She meets new people and puts herself out there regularly.
She kicked the smokes after a 30+ year addiction and now goes to exercise class and croquet instead.
She continues to travel even though it’s not the easiest thing for her to do. When I was living in London, she even came to meet me in weird places like Russia, where I would cry every day because something would go wrong. Mum remained chillaxed to the max, even when the metro broke down and I didn’t know where we were and thought we might get kidnapped by the russian mafia.
She has raised two daughters, is now ‘nanna’ as well as our ‘marmee’, and has kept her marriage thriving for over 40 years.
She keeps on going when most of us would have given up.
She wakes up, puts on her shoes and just keeps on going into each new day.