PHQ9 Depression Test

I have heard from a couple of people recently who have said that their mental health has been getting worse during this lockdown period.

I wanted to direct you to this page which has a version of the PHQ 9 test for you to use.

Remember its OK to not be OK and if you find you’re answers to the test are high please speak to someone, your doctor is a great starting point but obviously in these strange times that may not be easily done,a loved one or if you need a chat find me via my Facebook page and drop me a line.

Stay safe, look after your mental health!

Reasons to be cheerful. Cats

Is there a more soothing, comforting sound than that of a cat purring on your lap? It is just a wonderful noise and helps me unwind immensely.

We have 6 cats at home, but only one of them is what I would my cat. My little mate Blackie. He is an annoying face snuggler when you’re trying to sleep, has no respect for personal space and wakes me up by sneezing in my face more often than I would like but he is a very welcome addition to my world.

Every time I step outside in the front garden for a cigarette he comes with me and sits by my feet, follows me up and down the path and is like a little cute purring shadow. He is also pretty vocal so we can have a nice chat at times. Erm…so yeah, maybe the lockdown has turned me into a crazy cat man. Note to self stop referring to yourself as his daddy…

He also seems to know when I’m feeling a little bit down and ramps up the affection. Sitting and stroking him is a great tool against depression, just so relaxing.

Here is my cute little buddy

Are you a cat or dog person?

Did I miss the announcement

Is lockdown over? Are we free again to go about as the glorious pre lockdown days? Guessing I missed that one on the news because its seems that since Bojo announced we were past the peak people have taken that to mean do whatever the fuck we want.

I’m seeing more and more people out, groups of people that I know are not from the same households walking along the street together, not even the 2 meters apart that is recommended.

I stood out in the front garden and had a smoke, in the 10 minutes I was outside I counted 58 people walking past. Ok I live opposite a park but that is more than normal. When i went to Tesco to get shopping the other day I sat in traffic!

What is going on with people? I get it, we are getting fed up with staying at home but there is a reason for this!

One thing that has been shown by people is how selfish they are. Its not about if you have this killer its about who could get it from you! Stay the fuck at home.

The opening of a fast food drive through is not an essential journey! Police are having to issue fines because people are driving for hours just to get a burger.

Seems common sense has gone in these selfish people. Yet these same people will happily clap for the NHS and key workers but are happily putting them in danger because they wont listen to the rules…..

But hey, long as you can walk down the road pissed/high with your mates it’s all worth it….

Rant over….and breathe…

Educating the moose

Two weeks ago I found saw an ad on Facebook for a free level 2 distance learning course, I’ve never really been a great learner, I have no self discipline when it comes to things like this. Too easily distracted by that singing chocolate bar trying to get my attention, or the dancing bag of crisps calling me….but I took the plunge and signed up for a course on counselling skills, as its something I could actually see myself doing as a career.

Today I have actually started the course! For the first time since 1995 I am studying and to say I’m nervous and apprehensive is an understatement. My first assignment is due in 10 days! Doesnt leave me much time to get to grips with a new subject and after 3 hours of reading through parts of the workbook my brain is ready to explode with the information overload.

What tips would you give?

Should I set aside x amount of hours to the course each day?

Is it an idea to make notes as I’m reading, the book is only available online so I dont have a physical copy I can take and read without taking my laptop with me around the house.

Whatever gets you through the day

The walls are closing in, days morphing into each other and its becoming increasingly frustrating living in lockdown. Especially when I constantly see people ignoring the rules but obviously they wont catch anything or pass it on to others…

The thing is, its perfectly ok to do absolutely nothing if that’s what you need to do to get through the day. Is there an expectation that you put on yourself to be super productive with this extra time on your hands?

I’ll be honest most days I dont even bother getting dressed, as the neighbours who are forever seeing me in the front garden having a cigarette in my superman dressing gown with tell you ( I told you I was a catch). I haven’t been out for a walk in 5 days as I’m having a fibromyalgia flare up of pain so intense that it’s like being stabbed with 1000 knives each time I move.

If you start beating yourself up for not being productive it can be the start of a slippery slope. Yes there are things that could be done but if you feel that the right thing to do that day is nothing, then do nothing.

At least that’s what I am telling myself having slept the weekend away….

Look what you may have missed

Well its fair to say the writers block has been lifted after 9 months! The longest writing streak since 2014 and its been great to see people reading my words again.

There has been 12 posts since 23rd April and I’ve noticed that most get read on the day but once new content arrives its quickly consigned to history. So with that in mind I thought I would put links to all the recent posts here.

There is a little bit of everything from poetry in my own unique awful style, to trying to be positive with reasons to be cheerful. I have even been lucky enough to have people take the time to write posts for me to share about how coronavirus is impacting them.

Below are the links for each new post. Check them out, pearls of wisdom in each one..well hopefully that is the case but if you dont read them you will never know….

Isolation and Mental Health

Coronavirus thoughts and guest posts #1

The trouble with me

Reasons to be cheerful. The kiddies..

Coronavirus thoughts and guest posts #2

Reasons to be cheerful. Cala Millor

And it will be ok eventually

In the beginning and what next for The Depressed Moose

Coronavirus and guest posts #3

Reasons to be cheerful Puerto De La cruz

Reasons to be cheerful. Loro Parque

Ode to Coronavirus

Ode to Coronavirus

Toilet paper, none in sight
How will I wipe my arse tonight?
Coronavirus on it’s way
I must have 40 rolls a day!

Supermarkets had no stock, of to Tesco’s the people flock,
Pasta, sanitizer, soap and bleach,
Just a few examples of products out of reach

A month before it was about be kind,
It seems those day were quickly left behind. Cant get to the shops?.well you’re out of luck, 
I got what more than I need so I dont give a fuck!

Watching Netflix was the in thing,
Joe exotic, tiger king, Carol “fucking” Baskin
And then the memes came out to play,
How we laughed at the 100s we saw each day

We clap for the heroes, and the ones in the lowest paid jobs,
Previously referred to as unskilled slobs,
While the rich folks cry about all their losses, being paid millions to be their own bosses

Another week passes in lockdown hell,
Yet people still try to sneak out,
The idea of course is to “stay the fuck home”,
Not spread more of this killer about

Let’s not forget all the thousands who died,
How many families have suffered and cried,
It’s not about you being healthy and fit,
It’s about the vulnerable you selfish tit!

It’s hard for us all so dont gripe and moan,
the year 2020 will forever be known,
As the year we were told
To stay the fuck home

And when it’s all over we can finally rejoice, we stayed in our homes and made the right choice.
So heres to the future, and meeting for a drink,
Sounds good to me…what do you think?