19 Minutes ... And counting!

2010 is nearly upon those of residing in the lovely state of Queensland. It's already ticked over in several Australian states, and I'm already feeling a little teary and sentimental. That could be the alcohol talking though.

As per my previous post, the last decade was an eventful one, but I wouldn't change any of it because I'm pretty fond of the Gemma I am now, and all of those decisions have contributed to who I am now.

I look forward to 2010 being another eventful year, but eventful in a good way. I look forward to breakfasts with two of my favourite girls in the whole world, and to chatting over cocktails with those same to girls. I look forward to moving into a new place, meeting new people and making new friends.

I look forward to starting courses to give me some qualifications in my industry. I look forward to further coming out of my shell.

14 minutes to go. Goodbye 2009, and welcome 2010.



A few of my fellow bloggers have summarised the last decade as a bit of a reflection, so I thought I'd do the same.

What have I done in the last ten years?
• Became a big sister • Made my debut • Got my licence • Became an aunty • Completed the HSC • Had my heart broken at the thought that I wouldn't get into uni • Broke the heart of my high school boyfriend • Starting dating who I thought was 'Mr Right' • Got into uni • Moved out of home • Got engaged • Watched my father-in-law die of cancer • Quit uni • Depression began • Moved 3 hours away from my family • Became an aunty again • Got married • Moved back to live with my husband • Depression reared it's ugly head again • Seperated from my husband • Moved further and further away • Moved about 8 times in one year, including a move to Queensland • Explored my 'wild side' • Quit a job via fax • Fell into an awesome job • Started a relationship • Spent my first Christmas ever away from my family • Got divorced • Earned 3 payrises • Ended a relationship • Got three tattoos • Discovered more of Gemma • Made some fabulous friends • Depression kicks in again • Found contentment

Wowzers. Looking at it like that, it's been an eventful decade (which I kinda knew already). I wouldn't change it though. Despite the extreme lows that I have had, and as cliche as this will sound, they have all contributed to the person I am today, and you know what? I like her. Most days.

Here's to an awesome 2010, and no doubt another interesting decade to come. Let's hope there are more high highs than low lows though.



Throughout my life, I've been one of those people that's had many acquaintances and a few close friends, but the close friendships always seem to have their 'time' then dissipate.

Now though, I finally feel as though I have close friendships that will continue as we grow older and continue on our journeys through life. Friendships that won't just have 'their time'.

It's taken me a long time to find them, but I'm happy to have waited given how wonderful the friendships are. These are the friends I can turn to when I'm at my worst and know that they will do what they can to pick me back up, and I would do the same for them.

I'm so grateful for my beautiful friends.


Tuesday Morning Ramble

Just a quick post before I jump into the shower (not literally, that could cause injury).

The side effects seem to be wearing off now. I knew this week would be easier as I'm on the late shift, which means I don't start work til 10.30 and can allow myself a lot longer to wake up in the morning - although this morning my body clock thought 5.30 would be a good time to wake up. Nice.
Having said that, as I was sitting on the bus on the way to work yesterday I felt so completely out of it. On another planet out of it. Freaking out out of it. I contemplated getting off the bus and getting on the first one back home.
I soldiered on though, and made it through work. After a particularly bad thought on the way to the bus stop I decided that it would be best for me to see a counsellor sooner rather than later, so I made the most of work resources and have scheduled a counselling session for Thursday afternoon. As soon as I hung up the phone after making the appointment, I felt relieved. Whilst there's not really a lot that can be done to alleviate my current blahness and blues, it'll be good to speak to someone and just get my thoughts out.

I'd love to write more, but I really must start getting ready. I have a desk to pack up and tidy, and 3.5 hours of systems testing to do. Oh what joy.


Welcome to Side Effect City

Despite having been on this particular medication twice before, this time around, I'm being hit with some horrid side effects.

Nausea, insomnia, dizziness, vagueness. Oh what joy. When I'm on the 'early shift' (7.30 start) I wake up at around 5.30 and it takes me until about 10am to actually be 'with it'. Those first couple of hours of the work day, I'm in a dazed auto-pilot mode. Ridiculous. Dizziness is usually at it's worst then too (I take the medication in the morning with my breakfast, so this is probably why they're in full swing then), to the point where I feel as though I may faint. Fun times.

The insomnia is the worst part though. I can be absolutely dog-tired, and want and need to sleep, but it just doesn't happen. It's so frustrating! No afternoon naps for me! At night, I take a herbal sleeping tablet, and let that work it's magic, even those take longer than they should to kick in though. Generally, you're supposed to take one half an hour before bed. I have to take one at least an hour beforehand. I tend to get better/deeper sleep when I take them though, so it's not all bad.

On the plus side of the medication, I'm feeling a lot less 'blah' and am no longer crying for no apparent reason in the morning. The 'can't be bothered' feeling has disappeared, although at times the 'slow on the uptake' feeling feels a little like the 'can't be bothered' one, hahaha.
At this stage, a lot of this is probably just a mind-game, because it will take a few more days for the medication to really kick in properly, but any improvement is a win for me. (Having said that, the side effects are that bad today that I've called in sick to work. Sigh.)

The thought of Christmas being only two weeks ago excites me more than upsets me now. I'm going to enjoy my morning and lunch to myself, doing whatever I please. Might as well make the most of solo Christmas's before the future of hectic two-family-children-everywhere Christmas's hits me in years to come. (No, I'm not revealing anything there. Just suggesting that in the future, Christmas's may well be like that rather than seeing me sitting on the couch indulging in a solo seafood lunch).

On that note, I need to switch the brain off.

Happy Friday, readers.


Not so Delightful December

Long time no blog. So slack, but then again, I've not really had much to say. Life has been moseying along, working, not much playing, lots of not much-ing actually. Although I did go and visit my family two weeks ago. It was so fantastic to see them, and so hard to leave ...

So hard to leave ... December is going to be a hard month this year. I have no family in Queensland (well, maybe a few distant relatives, but none that I could enjoy the festive season with) and obviously my friends have their own plans. It really hits home how lonely I am. The last two Chrismtas' in Queensland I was in a relationship, and we spent Christmas with his family which was lovely. This year however, it's me myself and I.

I've had offers of lunches and evenings spent with friends. I'm still umming and aahing on the lunch, but the evening sounds like a plan. If I lunch it alone, I plan on indulging in a seafood and champagne lunch, whilst watching several cheesy movies. In theory it sounds lovely, in reality, I think it's going to hurt. Calling dad on Christmas Day will break my heart. I'll be fighting back the tears from the moment I hear his voice.

As soon as this month started, the struggle really began for me to remain happy and 'festive'. I knew deep down though, that this was not just 'festive season blues' and that this was something that I had been avoiding admitting to for a few months. This was me falling deeper into a depressive slump.

After a breakdown at work on Thursday, I headed to the doctor. $69, a lot of tears, a few soggy tissues, and a prescription later, I walked out knowing that my journey out of this hole had begun. He is a fantastic doctor, who let me sit there and sob while I struggled to put into words what I was feeling, apart from telling him that I just wasn't coping with life, that I'd been on medication for depression twice before. Some of his questions made me realise how far I've fallen when they made me sob uncontrollably and all I could do was nod or shake my head for an answer. He gave me the script, told me to take the next day off work to "Just relax!" and requested that I come back in about a month to see how I'm going on the medication and to assess me to see if he thinks I'll need a referral to see a psychologist. I like this plan. I'm glad he didn't just send me off to a psych straight away while my brain was still misfiring, and without me being back on medication to help sort me out.

Depression is something I have lived with on and off for the last 4-5 years. Possibly longer? It takes a pretty big trigger for me to fall right into the slump, and me thinking I'm coping, but still having an internal struggle is really me in a 'not so deep' pothole, rather than the massive pit like ones that see me break down completely. That see me thinking bad bad thoughts.
I know that with the medication, and probably counselling/psychology sessions that I won't stop going to because all of a sudden on things changes to make me happy, that I can deal with this. I'm not going to say "get over this" because I don't believe that depression is cureable. I believe that it's coped with, it's treated, or it's masked. Never cured.
I accept the fact that I have depression. I accept the fact that I need medication to cope with my life. I accept the fact that this is going to be a bad month, so probably the best month for me to have started back on the medication, because a lot of my mood improvement is going to rely on me working in conjunction with the medication. As much as I fight myself to get motivated, to move, to actually be productive, I know that I can do these things. I need to assure myself that it is worth the effort, and getting on the couch isn't really that hard to do.
It's not going to be an easy journey, and I accept that too. I have support from my friends, and work colleagues, though so that will be a major help in this.

I have faith. I will pull myself out of this slump. I will smile and mean it. I will have a happy Christmas.

More ink?

Tattoos really are addictive. I got my first in May of this year, my second in July, and today I've sketched up some potential designs for my third. Three in one year. Hmm. At this rate I should have my body covered in how many years? (Fear not, readers, I do not intend on getting that many tattoos).

So what are you thinking for tattoo number three, I hear you ask (or at least, the voices in my head suggest you're asking)?
For this one, I want cherry blossoms on my hip at the front. My descriptions of tattoo locations unless blindingly obvious (eg. inside of my wrist) are, quite frankly, pathetic, so that's the best description you're getting from me on the location until such time as I have said tattoo permanently marked onto my body.
Google searches failed to give me much inspiration on the exact tattoo I'm after, so out came the newly purchased pencil and sketchbook and I whipped up a few designs. For your viewing pleasure, if you're that way inclined, I present to you the first draft, very roughly sketched options for my next inking:

(The last one would also go from side to side like the other two, I just forgot to rotate it before I uploaded it, and I'm feeling a little tired and lazy at the moment so CBF changing it)

I think I might incorporate some colour into this tattoo too, probably pink.

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