On Sunday I took my niece, Bernard, to watch the last ever Harry Potter film. It was so emotional for me; I forgot how much I’d relied on the books and films in the past. This may sound strange to you all so let me explain…….
7 years ago I was diagnosed with acute Post Natal depression. Almost TWO years after I had my Son.
I was only diagnosed because I had a Nervous Breakdown…
(There were also a number of other events that led to this breakdown, not just the birth of my gorgeous boy – I’ll tell you about that another time….)
During this Break Down period I came very, very close to killing myself…
I saw myself as a useless Mum that had failed her Son, my family and everyone I knew…. And I was very; very scared about everything I was going through.
I knew I had to get help and Mumina encouraged me to go to counselling and I began to take Anti-Depressants – both helped immensely but I still found it very hard to switch off and was still a very big ‘worrier’. I spent so many hours in the day just worrying about really ridiculous things… “What shall I cook for dinner?”…”The House isn’t tidy enough”…. “The washing needs to all be done in one day, including ironing etc..” “Am I looking after the MSB ok?? Am I doing enough??? Am I a good Mum?” So there I’d sit worrying and worrying over and over, analysing everything to the point where I would have a massive panic attack and could barely leave the house for a week.
I didn’t have a job and my partner preferred that I stay at home, looking after the house and the MSB (I later learned that this was my downfall – I did not suit being the stay at home parent). I was bored and alone.
Then the first Harry Potter film came out…..
I thought it was amazing!!! Whose mind could come up with something like this?? I wanted more!!! G.E.N.I.U.S!!! And someone told me about the books… OMFG “There IS more???”.
This may sound like utter Bat Poo to a lot of you; “Harry Potter?? WTF???” but to me it was a life line, a perfect world I was looking for, where good will out and lots of madness and magic in between – a very good place to get lost......
I’ve always been a lover of books, but having a baby, house to run etc. makes you forget about yourself and what you like doing, so I made the announcement to the family;
“I’m going to start reading the Harry Potter books!” -To which they replied: “Have you stopped taking your medication?”
So I began to make time to read, it took a while, but after a few months I began to feel less stressed, if I thought I was going to have a panic attack or felt uneasy about something I used to list the spells I knew, A-Z, in my head until I calmed down… I used it as a diversion tactic and it bloody worked!!!!! Whenever I was going through some bad stuff – and there’s been some real bad stuff – out would come the books and I’d seek solace in them.
Life hasn’t been that kind to me, even after the break down, and I still take antidepressants. This enables me to cope with what life decides to throw at me…. Sometimes it chooses to ambush me rather than just a neat little throw and that’s where I’ve learnt to take a step back and think “OK, you’ve been to the brink, you can cope with this just put your mechanisms into place” And outcome my blessed relief into a different reality!!!
So when it came to watching the last film on Sunday I was shocked at the amount of tears falling down my face. I mean I still have the books, they’re still waiting for me on my book shelve if they’re needed.
But it just suddenly dawned on me just how much these books had saved me… I found myself thinking that my MSB could have been all alone and Motherless if I’d chosen a different route…. Luckily for me and him I didn’t.
Depression is an illness and at times it sucks balls, but the more you talk about it and be honest about it, the more people understand you. And if you’ve found you’re coping mechanism – then tell the world!!! =
Harry Potter Rocks!!!