Michael J. Austin has created a simple yet powerful image of inner torment and outer beauty in “Red Dress.” Thank-you to Michael for allowing me to use his artwork for my project.
This Website has been set up to bring 'depression' out into the open. PAWS Cafe is currently my virtual place for sharing ideas about mental wellbeing and how to self manage
it. It is also a place for raising awareness and funds for mental health issues. One day I hope to make my PAWS Cafe an actual reality, but for now grab a coffee and read on...
'autobioetry' (the name I give to my autobiographical poems presented on this website),the reader will journey through my remembered and actual lived experiences of depressive symptoms and come out the other side.
Getting my thoughts and feelings of 'IT' (the name I give to depressive symptoms) out onto paper was a useful and transformative process which spanned 10 years of my life. In their entirety my 52 autobiographical poems span 34 years of experiences
of lived depressive symptoms and are chroniologically ordered in my book A Blue Sky Is Calling
Examples of the Autobioetry within my book A Blue Sky Is Calling are to the left.
Autobioetry catogories 1-6 are remembered experiences spanning age 17-40 ; 7-26 is autobioetry written over the course of 10 years , each Autobioem written during the lived experience of that particular moment in time; whilst autobioetry
category 27-28 reflects the ending to my autobioetry writing at age 50.
I do not write or read poetry as a profession or hobby. I am a Registered Nurse, having worked for the NHS for 30 years
by the time I retire from it at 55 in April 17. I was therefore intrigued to understand why thoughts about my depression experiences flowed out in a poetic style. I wonder if it has something to do with the fact I tend to be a visual
and sensing right brain thinker. I have since discovered some interesting authors on the subject of how writing and poetry can be used as a transformative tool for self-knowledge and awareness and I agree with their insight as quoted below:
'Recording thoughts and feelings provides a testament to your life experience. When you write through the process of externalization, your invisible thoughts and feelings become visible. Writing makes witnessing possible
and gives you another vantage point from which you can view the situation. With witnessing comes new observations, reflections and sometimes a new perspective' (Sherry Reiter)
'Poetry acknowledges something
deep within our nature-an urge to name, say, sing, grieve, praise, out of our solitariness, to another person' or ourselves ( Christine Perrin -The art of poetry; italics my addition )
is an innate ability of humans to find a way to express what cannot be expressed in any other way. From our earliest beginnings humankind has creatively expressed emotion through music, art and dance...Your Writing is your own truth as you are experiencing
it at that moment. Even if you do not understand what you are feeling at the time, when you read and re-read your own writing, you are most likely to 'crack the code' and discover new meaning, having an extraordinary ability to bring us to
a new level of self-knowledge and awareness' (Sherry Reiter-Writing away the demons: stories of creative coping through Transformative Writing)
My hope is that this Website/ My Book A Blue Sky Is Calling
will also encourage others to 'write out' their own lived experiences of negative mental/physical health issues. If you would like to drop me a line about this website please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org