114 Days of freed0m-Day 4

Today I arranged to visit my friend Jenny who has a 10 week old puppy that I just have to see.  I have seen some photos and he looks adorable and I made sure that I took my camera with me.

I arrived at the house, opened the door and he came to greet me straight away; no nerves and no barking just much tail wagging. What a cutie.


As with most pups he is all big feet and long legs which are still not quite under his control when he runs around after Jenny-mummy everywhere she goes. He bombed around playing with his toys until he flopped and although he fought to stay awake, soon he was fast asleep on Jenny-mummy’s lap.


Nite-nite Fenn.

Sleep tight.





My First Anniversary-“Thank you”

Prozac-free and loving life!

“Fighting depression with positivity” is my tag-line and thankfully that’s just what I have been able to do this year. So much so that I am now celebrating a year without antidepressants and I really do feel that I have this unpredictable and debilitating illness under control at last.

Being positive can be hard work.  I know from personal experience that changing one’s thought processes from negative to positive and trying to block out unnecessary”white noise” and “rubbish”  is exhausting and the amount of effort that it takes to implement these emotional changes often takes people by surprise. But with the right help and support it gets easier and the further you progress, the more natural “positive thinking”  will become.

So, I would like to thank all my family, friends and colleagues for their continued support during 2012. I wouldn’t be able to maintain such a positive and stable mindset without my networks-I never underestimate their importance or take them for granted.


Breakfast with Tom

Sometimes we are honoured and privileged to have Tom join us for breakfast.

His table manners are impeccable and waits until we are all ready before he starts to eat.

Tom likes to be civilised and eat his food off a plate.

He never gobbles his food, preferring to take his time to savour the flavour (trout & spinach is his favourite)

After breakfast, it’s time for a mid-morning nap before lunch.


Tig, you’re on!

Hah! Just when I thought I’d escaped Crazytraintotinkytown got me! Blog-tag is great fun and many thanks to my cyberspace friend for searching me out and chasing me down.

Unlike the traditional playground version I used to play there are rules to this game;

You must post the rules
Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post
Create eleven new questions to ask the people you will tag
Tag (eleven) people with a link to your post
Let them know they’ve been tagged

So here goes with the the questions I’ve been given by my tagger:

1. What makes you laugh?

Gavin & Stacey, the “white horse joke” and people who accidentally trip over in public (as long as they are not hurt!) 

2. What was the best piece of advice you were ever given?

Trust your son.

3. What’s your favourite city?

Ooooh, Esfahan just about edges it over Berlin.

4. How would your best friend describe you?

Strong-minded, determined, untidy and compassionate.

5. What was the last book you read?

“Then they came for me” by Maziar Bahari 

6. What music do you listen to?

Chris de Burgh, Ed Sheeran, Noah & The Whale, Bob Marley, Hairspray, Amy McDonald, Adele & Junior Choice with Ed “Stewpot” Stewart on Christmas Day. 

7. When was the last time you cried?

On Jury Service when I realised I was going to have to deliver a verdict of “Not Guilty” to the court but all the time believing that the defendant was guilty.

8. Who was the last person to kiss you?

My husband, Feri.

9. Who is your hero?

Sir Bobby Robson. 4 times cancer survivor, amazing football Manager, a great man and fantastic example to all young men in football.

10. Where were you born?

Hurray for Hollywood (Hollywood, Birmingham 😦 )

11. Do you drive?

Yes, very carefully!

Here are my 11 questions for the Bloggers I tag:

1. What is your favourite flower?

2. Do you have a nickname?

3. If you lived in a zoo, which creature would you be?

4. Look in the mirror. What do you see?

5. Lights on or lights off?

6. Your last text. Who gets it?

7. Can you swim?

8. What is your favourite quote or saying?

9. What are your three most endearing characteristics?

10. Cabernet Sauvignon or Sauvignon Blanc?

11. Why do you think Smurfs are blue? 

Here are the blogs I chose (not 11 but close!) :

1. Stitch this

2. Fighting the Blues

3.  Juliajustgotcreative

4. Clothmonkey

Have fun!

Contrasting fortunes-the cycle of depression

Yesterday I spent time with two of my colleagues and the difference in their moods could not have been more marked. I had lunch with the lovely “K” who was bubbly, brimming over with newly found confidence and self-approval, smiley, chatty, shoulders back and eyes glinting full of mischief. A woman on a mission to make the most of the moment. Only “K” could come to the table with a glorious salad piled high only then to reach into her bag to find the cheese, salad dressing and croutons/sprinkles/crispy bits (whatever they’re called) to complete the spread! She kept me entertained for a good hour and it was great to see her so full of life and energy after so many tearful and difficult times.

This is the wonderful side of the human mind. With the right encouragement, treatments, inspiration and motivation, the support of friends, family and colleagues it has an amazing ability to recuperate and regenerate positivity from the pit of despair and despondency.

 Simply amazing and long may it last!

Unfortunately, “A” isn’t in such a good place right now. Overwhelmed and under pressure, tears welled as she spoke of her current low mood. Each problem individually manageable but collectively insurmountable and with little energy left over from fighting the depression she faces a constant stream of routine daily battles just to get through the day. All those things that people take for granted; having a shower, cleaning your teeth, eating breakfast, driving to work, facing the crowds on the train. Struggling in vain to concentrate with a mind that wanders and flits unproductively from task to task. Tired and worried. A vicious circle and a negative downward spiral awaits unless the self-critical behaviour is arrested.

Hopefully, “A” will find the strength and courage to face the battles with hope and belief that all will be well in the end given time and gets the support she deserves from her friends, family and colleagues. “A” is usually the strong one. The carer and nurturer. I just hope that she takes some time out for herself and gives herself a chance to regain her positive and capable self soon.

She’s taken the first, and often most difficult step in talking about it. It’s onwards and upwards from here “A”.

You go girl. We’re with you all the way. 🙂

Happy Birthday Poppyposts!

Poppyposts celebrates it’s first birthday tomorrow and thank you to everyone who has taken the time to log-in and read the posts. A total of 11,072 views in 12 months-I am amazed and delighted. Here’s to the next 12 months and exciting times.

I have now renewed my subscription which enables me to continue writing and unsurprisingly some themes will remain constant. Fighting the ever-present spectre of depression (currently in remission) is still important as is helping in the campaign against the stigma of mental illness which remains a priority. Talking openly and honestly about my experiences with depression undoubtedly helps to do this and I will continue to do this for as long as it does help. There will also be more trips to Iran which are a rich source of blogging material but I’m not planning on going out anytime soon as I understand that the temperature has dropped close to freezing and they have snow. Brrrr…..too cold.

Children In Need is upon us again and deserves another highlight. This year I have my Pudsey Bear ears to match my T-shirt and fairy cakes. I won’t however be doing the Santa 5k, or BBQ-ing Christmas Dinner in the back garden this year but I do have my new creative venture “The Scrapbook Fairy” to keep me occupied during the long winter days. I will also be working with Sandra, the lovely proprietor of JLT Crafts to put on scrapbooking crops and workshops in her shop in the New Year. This is something I’m really looking forward to.

The last 12 months have been exciting, challenging, sometimes difficult, often dark and disappointing but they have also been amazing. I am blessed with new friends, new activities and a new perspective on life.

Happy Birthday Poppyposts!

Thank you XXXX