Category Archives: Out

Items relating to being ‘out’ – as in “out of hospital”. Survival, triumph, struggle, laughter and resources

Chan and Sukumaran finally executed

Barbarism is barbarism, whether it’s in our own backyard or elsewhere on the planet. The death penalty is barbaric, as are other policies or procedures which systemically deprive persons of life, health and home.
Today we are faced with brutal evidence of humanity’s collective capacity for inhumanity. Chan and Sukumaran will not be forgotten. My question for you is this: What can we do – as individuals, communities and as a nation – to make the world a better place?

Myuran Sukumaran

Photo credit: The New Daily

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A Coming Out Post

Hello friends! I shot this video about 10 days ago. Then, before I got a chance to post it, I was violently ill for a day … suffered increasing abdominal pain for another day … was admitted to the emergency department … and underwent surgery early last Monday morning. So here, at last, is the video I wanted you to see over a week ago!

This will find its permanent home under the “About” tab, as it describes the evolution of this blog from the cathartic writings of last year’s deep, deep depression to the more purpose-driven posts you’ll read henceforth. It’s not a clever video, it’s not well edited or slickly put together or any of those things, but hopefully it gets the message across.

Much love to you all, from ME – Catie Morrison, who lives in Melbourne, Victoria (aka Dysthymia Bree).


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Gratitude List

It’s early morning and I should be arranging flights interstate to attend the funeral on Monday, but I’m in the grip of inertia and can’t find the energy to get going. What to do? Write a gratitude list, of course.

In this moment, I am grateful:

  • that time sometimes slumps, and sometimes flies
  • that we can remember a life well lived; memory is indeed something to value
  • for sleep without drugs, and for the skills which allow me to enjoy it, however fleetingly
  • to my ever-generous parents. I didn’t need help this time, but appreciate you offering nonetheless
  • that relationships are rarely set in stone. They’re rubbery, elastic, weirdly plastic things; non-Newtonian fluids
  • to my therapist who, not knowing my grandmother had died, called before he went on leave with the name of someone else I could talk to in extremis, if necessary
  • for the wonder that is libraries: books! Books! BOOKS!
  • for tea in the pot and food in the pantry; because, like birth, death and kindness, it’s these “simple” things which are the stuff of life.

I hope that, whenever your Friday arrives, it is a good day. I trust that mine will be.


thanks heart


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Lots of news this morning

This morning was always going to be a big morning: I don’t like confrontation, but I knew I had to talk to my psychologist about something; then, I learnt that my grandmother died.

She was unconscious, and slipped away peacefully, I believe. Some of you might remember that we had thought she may die the other weekend, but she pulled through. For me, that was a wake up call: I had thought I was prepared for her death, but grief surprised me. Today the news came as a surprise, but I felt more able to see her death as … well, as something natural and expected, I guess.

I got the news not long before my appointment with the psychologist, whom had upset me at the end of our last appointment by the way he responded to me correcting my name. I went ahead and had the courageous conversation with him before saying anything else. He claims not to have remember saying what I believe he said; my recollection seems fairly vivid, but I accept I could have been wrong. He also said that although I have a strong preference to be called by my preferred name, the name he knows me by is my formal name – he said that, for him, is my name. He said that we were two different people with two different names for me. I said that I thought it was not unreasonable for a psychologist to remember my preferred name, and he said that if he slipped up in the future he would be more aware of it.

I would have preferred an apology, or even an assurance that he would try not to slip up in the future, but at least we’ve had that conversation now.

The progress for me in this was being able to have a calm, sensible and assertive conversation with a person in “authority” without crying or becoming either submissive, aggressive or passive aggressive. I think I conducted myself well, especially within an hour of hearing news of a bereavement.

I could write a lot about the grief I’m feeling, but I won’t, except to say that I loved my grandmother very much and am very sad that she is dead. Some might say I “shouldn’t” feel sad, because (a) she had “left” us some time ago, when she lost her senses to dementia; and (b) she is no longer suffering the pains and indignities of her physical condition. However, I am sad. What I feel is what I feel.

Finally: thank you to everyone who offered support this morning before my courageous conversation with the psychologist. Even a text message! I am really lucky to have people who care that much.

Be well, my friends.


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Feelings: ugh.

This post is going to be less edited than usual, a bit of a mental splapwaiouerh onto the screen just to get some stuff out. Strap yourself in for spelling mistakes and grammar errors! (And you, inner critic, you can just shut the fuck up!)

Last Monday I came to the conclusion that “Perhaps I don’t have feelings”. Weird statement, as I was wringing my hands at the time, but it felt true as I spoke it. I gave the matter a lot of thought and on Friday figured out that, as I am coming out of such a long depression, there’s been ages in which I have been almost literally unable to experience certain things or feel certain emotions without my brain flopping into despair or flipping out into hyper-anxiety. In other words, it’s not that I didn’t have feelings, they were there (my body told me so!) but my mind didn’t allow me to feel them.

Then, over the weekend, we had some bad news about my grandmother. Ahhh, I don’t want to talk about it … see? Even in a post about not feeling feelings I don’t want to go to the hard places. Anyway, it was challenging.

I can remember being snotfully tearful and overwhelmed by emotions. Maybe that’s part of my problem now: I’m just too scared to go there again. Well, not me; the part of my mind which protects the rest of me.

I can make statements, at the moment. For example: I don’t want my therapist to go on leave. Yesterday he said something about complaints (I have trouble making complaints to authority figures). I wondered what the distinction between a statement like the one above and a complaint was. We decided it was emotional content. So, just to try it out, I thumped the arms of the chair and spoke: “I really don’t want you to go away and abandon me!” It wasn’t a magic trick. The feelings didn’t come rushing back into my consciousness. I did get sore hands, though.

So: me and feelings. Sort of not really connecting right now. I can guess at what I’m feeling through observing my body’s reactions, but otherwise I just resort to my favourite misdirector, good old intellectualism. Paradoxically, the more clinical and detached my posts are, the more emotional strain I may be feeling.

Well, that’s my wordsplurge. As always, these sentences are just drops in the ocean of what I could write about this; however, enough is enough, for now.

Be well, sweetlings!

xx DB



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