Mental health

Getting through November

I have to say it. I hate November.

In my opinion, it is the hardest month of the year. And it is the month where I always struggle with my depression.

I didn’t always feel this way.

As a child and a teenager I was indifferent to November. Nothing exciting happened. I spent the days waiting for December and the count down to Christmas.

That all changed on Saturday, 23rd November 2002.

That was the day that I made serious plans to take my life and that evening I took my third overdose.

After the attempt, I was a ghost of my former self. A fragile and empty shell.

I was seriously ill. Physically, mentally and emotionally.

My psychiatrist, sensing that a hospital environment would destroy me, decided to release me into my parents’ care.

And at the age of 24, I moved back home.

The next few months are a blur. I can’t remember the events that occurred but I can remember the heartache. The desolation. The numbness. The self-hatred. The despair.

There were a lot of tears. There were hours spent staring numbly at the wall in my room. Unable to get out of bed. Willing myself to stop breathing. Stop existing.

But I carried on. I recovered.

It is now November 2015 and I am a different person. Most importantly, I am a wife and a mother.

But every November, I remember. And I relive the heartbreak and dread.

Every November, I remember the night my life changed forever. The night my life could have ended.

And it cuts through me like a knife. Every day. For 30 days!

I know it is just a date. I know it shouldn’t have any hold on me. But it does.

It is like a box of old memories that I have put at the back of the wardrobe. I know I can’t throw it away. It is an important part of my life and those experiences helped to shape the person I am today. But I wish it could be forgotten about. Closed. Sealed.

Even if I am not consciously thinking about that day, my subconscious won’t let me forgot.

The nightmares start at the beginning of November. Shortly followed by the recurring dreams that are echoes of past depressive episodes.

I wake up exhausted. Feeling like I have run an emotional marathon.

Then there is the self-doubt. The apathy. The general desire to hibernate and isolate myself from the world.

This year is even harder than usual.

In early November 2014 I lost our third baby. And the baby we lost back in May was due on 25th November.

When I worked out that baby’s due date, I turned to Mr H and said “it will be lovely to have something happy happen in November. Just once.”

It is possible that I cursed the baby with those words. Once spoken, a sword of Damocles appeared above my baby’s head.

Please don’t misunderstand me, I still have many happy moments during this month.

But there is a dam of emotion that is just waiting to burst.

And sadly these emotions can’t always be held back.

They emerge in a sharp word to a friend; an undeserved moan at my husband; an impatient strop with my toddler;  an inappropriate comment at a social gathering; or an outpouring of emotion to people I barely know.

So how do I survive November?

I just do!

It helps to know that I feel as I do because of Novemberitis. That I just have to grin and bear it. The excitement and anticipation of Christmas awaits.

I make myself get up in the morning. I get dressed and I put on make-up. I go out and see friends or take Littls Miss H to play group. I allow my husband to give me comforting hugs and I feel secure in his love. I smile and giggle with my daughter.

I fight the feelings and emotions that try to take me to a bad place. I challenge my negative thinking. I do what I need to do.

I also allow myself to be.

To feel miserable. To cry. To weep.

This is a kindness.

Instead of pretending this depression doesn’t exist. I am controlling how and when I let it take me.

This November may be hard. But I will not let it beat me. I will welcome December with open arms and a beaming smile. And I will know that there are eleven wonderful months before the box of memories is taken out of the wardrobe, dusted down and opened once again.

Hugs

Mrs H

xxxx

59 Comments

  • Reply
    Mrs H
    December 27, 2015 at 10:33 pm

    Thank you for your kind words. I am very blessed. I do have a wonderful husband and daughter. They are my life. And make everything so much better. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Alan herbert
    December 11, 2015 at 2:32 pm

    It must be terrible to have this every year.

    I never looked forward to December. I still don’t.

    Having the kids has meant I don’t get as low as I used to.

    Thankfully I don’t have the flashbacks and nightmares to any of my suicide attempts.

    I hope that in time it gets better for you and November is not such a bad month for you.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 15, 2015 at 4:21 am

      Thanks for your lovely comment. I hope that you are not finding it too hard this month. It is horrible when a certain time of year has a grip on you like this. But, as you say, it helps to have children and to focus on that. Take care of yourself. Bigs hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Amber
    December 7, 2015 at 1:13 pm

    You’ve been quiet for a while, darling – are you ok? Thinking of you. x
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 15, 2015 at 4:22 am

      Awww, thank you so much lovely. I am fine. Just so busy and trying to keep my head down and look after myself. Thank you for caring. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Suzanne
    November 27, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    Hugs back to you lovely this sounds like a horrible nightmare to relive every year 🙁 This was so beautifully written, I’m so glad that you made it through and have your story to tell. Depression is a horrible, horrible illness. November is almost over now. x x

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 10:32 pm

      Thank you so much for your gorgeous comment. You are very kind. You are right, depression is hideous. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. But I got through November and it was actually a lovely month despite everything. I hope you are well and had a wonderful Christmas. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Katie LifeonVistaStreet Haydock
    November 26, 2015 at 4:35 pm

    Such a brave lady – you can do it gorgeous. We’re nearly there xXx

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 15, 2015 at 4:23 am

      Thanks gorgeous. And woo hoo! Now we are half way through December. How did that happen? Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Louise Parry
    November 19, 2015 at 9:39 pm

    We are all here for you my darling to help you through the worst of times.
    November will be over soon and hopefully life will start to become a bit easier for you again. I know what it’s like to feel as though everything is stacked against you and when it’s a struggle just to get up in the morning. Love and hugs to you.
    Louise Parry recently posted…To Jeremy Hunt, On Behalf of My HusbandMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      November 20, 2015 at 9:22 pm

      Thanks so much for your lovely comment honey. I am actually coping really well this month. I surprise myself! Writing the post helped. Getting my feelings out always does help. Take care of yourself lovely. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Everything Mummy
    November 15, 2015 at 9:28 pm

    Oh Lucy I just wan to each through the screen and give you the biggest hug ever you are such a stung lady I admire your bravery so much, the way you talk openly about your feelings and previous battles with depression really will help others your amazing xx
    Everything Mummy recently posted…Sunday Stars 15/11/2015My Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      November 25, 2015 at 1:06 pm

      Awww, Amy. You’ll make me cry. I really don’t feel amazing. I feel like I am just muddling through. It helps to write these things down. And knowing that I might help others is brilliant. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Alex Lamb & Bear
    November 15, 2015 at 5:07 pm

    I can’t begin to image how you are feeling, but the one thing I have taken from this post is that you are facing this month head on and you should be so proud of yourself. Sending lots of love xxx
    Alex Lamb & Bear recently posted…Top 5 Tips For Redesigning Your BathroomMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      November 25, 2015 at 1:05 pm

      Thanks Alex. That is kind of you. I won’t let this type of thing defeat me. I am stronger than that. Thanks for your lovely comment. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Katy
    November 14, 2015 at 10:53 pm

    Oh I just want to give you the biggest hug. You didn’t curse your baby hun but I know I would have felt the same. I hope one November something wonderful happens to turn those awful memories into distant ones that are overshadowed by the new happy memories. Huge hugs, it is nearly December xx
    Katy recently posted…Seeing The Light – HappyDays #57My Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 10:47 pm

      Thank you for your lovely comment, Katy. You are very kind. November surprised me. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. In fact, it was quite lovely. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Emma @sophieellaandme
    November 14, 2015 at 9:39 pm

    What a brave post to write and I’m so sorry for what you’ve been through. I hope you can get through this difficult month and look forward to what is ahead xx
    Emma @sophieellaandme recently posted…Christmas Gift Guide 2015: For HerMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 10:49 pm

      Thank you for your kind comment. I did get through November. And there were some very happy moments. Having Little Miss H and Mr H in my life always helps. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Ally Mother Under Measure
    November 14, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    Oh hunny, I’m sorry. It’s so much for you to take in. I know what it’s like to have certain times that trigger your mental health more than others, it’s so hard but remember you’ll get through it. You are such a strong lady, an inspiration. Thank you for being so open and honest as always, the rawness of your emotions shows. xxx

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 10:51 pm

      Thank you for your lovely comment, Ally. I know, that sadly, you understand so much that I write about. But November is over and soon it will be 2016. I hope you are well, darling. Sending you massive hugs. Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Sarah christie
    November 14, 2015 at 7:29 pm

    Lucy I am so sorry you feel like this, November is possibly my favourite month and I feel so sad you are not seeing it through my eyes. I hope you get you happy November sometime soon, maybe book a wonderful trip and make some happy memories as you so deserve them my darling x
    Sarah christie recently posted…A Family Break At Slaley Hall Q LodgesMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 10:53 pm

      Thank you for your comment, Sarah. I like your suggestion of going somewhere wonderful in November. Maybe next November that is what we should do. Then I can try to see November as you do. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Harriet Leonard
    November 14, 2015 at 8:47 am

    I’m so sorry to read this. It must be do hard for you. 27th of November is a date that I dread. My brother died suddenly 4 years ago and it will always be ingrained in my mind. Sending you lots of love & strength xx
    Harriet Leonard recently posted…The last Autumn walkMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 10:55 pm

      Oh Harriet, I am so sorry to hear that. It is awful when these days stay with us forever. I hope that you managed to get through the day. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Natalie Ray
    November 13, 2015 at 9:51 pm

    I’m so sorry you’re going through such a tough time and I’m sorry to hear of all you have been through. I am willing November away for you. And you are amazing for still managing to get up and put on makeup, you put me to shame. I have totally given up on my appearance, haven’t worn makeup for months and months. I hope you realise how inspirational your blog is, I’ve heard so many people say such kind words about it but it hasn’t really crossed my path before now. I’m glad to have read your blog at last and I look forward to reading it regularly in the future. All the best for this skanky, smelly month. Throw stones at it.xx
    Natalie Ray recently posted…Our Thursday Photo #79My Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 10:59 pm

      Hello Natalie. I think that this is one of the kindest comments I have ever received. It is funny! I don’t really think of my blog as inspirational. It is just a place for me to be honest. I am glad that you have discovered my blog too. I hope that you enjoy reading it in future. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Mummy Tries
    November 13, 2015 at 8:18 pm

    Oh honey, I really feel for you. Although ‘it’s just a date’, when lots of things happen around that date it’s hard not to start associating it with negativity. I always end up having a crap time around my mother’s birthday in October, every year it’s the same. This year we lost my hubby’s granddad and my daughter came home from school an absolute wreck (the final straw moving us towards home ed).

    You will get through November my lovely, and you will emerge stronger than ever before come the 1st December. Because you are in control now.

    Sending you a huge hug xxxx
    Mummy Tries recently posted…My Love Affair with ThailandMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 11:01 pm

      Thank you for my huge hug and for your lovely comment. I am so sorry to hear that you had such an awful October. It is rubbish when these months are so hideous. At least, we have a whole 11 months before it comes around again. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Sian QuiteFranklySheSaid
    November 13, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    I wish I knew the right words to say. Sending you lots of hugs and love. I admire how open you are about your depression, I hope it helps to write it down – and I am sure it is helping other people to read it x
    Sian QuiteFranklySheSaid recently posted…REVIEW: Slumbersac Sleeping Bag with FeetMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 11:02 pm

      Thank you for your kind words. It does help me to write all my emotions down. It is a form of therapy. And I am so pleased that my words may make someone feel less alone and isolated in their own depression. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Vikki Holness
    November 13, 2015 at 6:47 pm

    Oh honey, this makes me want to cry. You’ve been through so much heartache and pain, yet still find the strength to dig deep and carry on. You are a remarkable woman. xx
    Vikki Holness recently posted…Harry // You Are TwoMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 11:04 pm

      Thank you for your kind words. I don’t feel like a remarkable woman. I just feel like a woman who carries on, mostly with a smile on her face. And who is blessed with a fabulously supportive husband and a beautiful little girl. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Leigh - Headspace Perspective
    November 13, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    We’re all here to get you through November lovely Mrs H, and back in to the better 11 months of the year xxx
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 11:05 pm

      Thank you so much gorgeous Leigh. Your support always means so much to me. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Alice
    November 13, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    I wish I could say the right words to help you get through this month. Your such a strong lady and you’ve just got to keep your head up. Can only imagine how hard this month is for you with all those memories. Awful that they all happened around the same time but then maybe focus on the positives that November can be your down month when you allow yourself to relive these emotions and try to move away from them in December. A really honest post I hope it helps in some way xx
    Alice recently posted…Flying High – The Little MomentsMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 11:07 pm

      Thank you for your kind comment. It does really help to write these emotions down. In the end, November was a much better month than expected. I allowed myself to feel when I needed to and pulled myself up when I needed to as well. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Kat | Beau Twins
    November 13, 2015 at 3:29 pm

    Oh darling. I just want to give you the biggest hug. You are so brave for writing this and I hope it’s given you some comfort. You are amazing, never forget that. You have such a wonderful strength and you should be so proud of yourself. Sending you love, strength and hugs always. Xxxx
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 27, 2015 at 11:08 pm

      Thank you for your kind words, lovely Kat. It means so much to me to have your support. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • Reply
    Julia @ rainbeaubelle
    November 13, 2015 at 2:56 pm

    Oh Lucy, I really feel for you and am sending you a massive hug. I think you should get lots of fun stuff planned for November and focus on making nice memories and anniversaries for this month, give yourself a second birthday mid November maybe, like the queen?! It is a time to be kind to yourself. Much love xxxx
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:15 pm

      Oh dear Julia, thank you for your kind words. I did plan lots of fun activities. And actually November was quite a fun month. But I love the idea of a second birthday in November. I might have to do that next year. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Lizzie Roles
    November 13, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    hello lovely Lucy, thank you for sharing this. The thing is I believe that you deserve to like November the same as any other month in a year, would you mind if I pray for you? To be released from the hold it has at the moment? I don’t believe for a second you put a curse on your baby Huni, you are a lovely girl who has had a tough break. Thinking of you & big hugs Lizzie xo
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:17 pm

      Oh Lizzie, you are so lovely. And I would be more than happy for you to pray for me. This November was much easier than in the past. Maybe, it is losing its hold on me. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Hayley @hayleyfromhome
    November 13, 2015 at 2:29 pm

    Oh sweet, I wish it didn’t have to be so hard for you, I hope it passes quickly and you can enjoy December and the run up to Christmas with your lovely family. I have no idea how hard it must be for you but you’ve given me an insight with this post, lots of love always xxx
    Hayley @hayleyfromhome recently posted…School Run Style – Winter FashionMy Profile

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:19 pm

      Hayley, you are always so lovely. November went by very quickly and we have had a wonderful December and Christmas. I am very blessed to have such a lovely and supportive family and friends. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Gemma @ Confessions of a Nagging Mother
    November 13, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    Awwww lovely, I am so sorry to read this. You will make it through November. You are a strong lady and you sound amazing. Keep going and keep smiling 🙂

    Gemma xx

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:20 pm

      Oh, you are so kind. I did make it through November. And I have to say, that I actually enjoyed it. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Jess
    November 13, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    What a strong woman you are! Life really can be such a rollercoaster, 2002 wasn’t a great time for me either, my Dad died ( I was 11), and I didn’t have a clue what was going to happen next, I’ve suffered with anxiety and depression since 11 and although I’ve not had the depression in a good few years now, I still have anxiety most of the time, I’ve learned to manage it now but after having my daughter 3 years ago, it almost took my life, it definitely took away a big part of me but luckily I asked for help before it was too late, now I couldn’t be happier, it’s always hard when you’re in that dark place, but like you said, it can’t be ignored, but it really can be managed 🙂 x

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:22 pm

      Oh Jess, bless you. It sounds like you have had a really tough time. It is awful when just one event can change the face of your life from then on. You sound like a very strong woman and you should be so proud of yourself for seeking help after your baby was born. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    kerry
    November 13, 2015 at 12:58 pm

    I hope December is a better month for you. I find November depressing with the weather and never have anything excited planned x

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:23 pm

      Kerry, thanks for your comment. December was a much better month. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Jodie
    November 13, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    What a deep post. I hope you’re ok. Just keep thinking forward to Christmas and getting your mind busy.
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:25 pm

      Thanks for your comment. It is always helpful to focus on Christmas and making it special for Little Miss H. Keeping busy does really help. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Jess Soothill
    November 13, 2015 at 10:13 am

    Oh lovely – poor you, and I didn’t realise this month was so tough for you. I hope you are okay and getting through it. It must be hard reliving raw memories. BIG hugs and you know where I am if you need a chat xx

    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:26 pm

      Oh thank you Jess. I am so lucky to have such supportive friends. With your help November was over in the blink of an eye and was actually quite fun. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Sammy at Seize each day
    November 13, 2015 at 9:31 am

    Oh my lovely I can completely and utterly understand why November is a difficult time for you and doubly so since your miscarriage too you poor love. I’m so proud of you though being so open and honest and your positivity looking forwards – it must be so hard, but you are doing it. HUGE hugs to you … it will soon be Christmas YAY!!!
    Sammy xxxxxxx
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:29 pm

      Oh Sammy, you always leave the most lovely and most supportive comments. You are so kind. This November was much better than in the past. I think it helps that I was able to throw myself into organising Christmas, to make sure it was extra special for Little Miss H. Hugs Lucy xxxx

  • Reply
    Mini Travellers
    November 13, 2015 at 9:09 am

    You certainly will not let it beat you my lovely. You will remember that you are amazing, a wonderful mother, a brilliant wife and a truly lovely friend. Those things are worth remembering every day, but particularly in November. xxx
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    • Reply
      Mrs H
      December 31, 2015 at 5:30 pm

      Oh Karen, you are so very kind. You are always very encouraging and supportive. I am lucky to have such lovely and fabulous friends. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

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