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Thank Goodness for Dory

Because if it wasn’t for her I would have stopped swimming long ago.

This blog is only a slice of my life, it is a tiny snippet of how things are. I use the blog to get the words out of my head. I write out the sad, press publish and then walk away. The simple act of writing out how I feel, helps me to make sense of my emotions so that my head doesn’t explode with the weight of the words circling like so many hungry buzzards inside my mind.

I think hungry buzzards as a metaphor was a bit over the top but the imageย  of words with wings flying in lazy circles is making me smile.

I like this internet connection I have with you. I like the fact that Jess can hear the stones whisper, that Achelois completely gets where I am coming from, Janet sends me dragonfly notebooks and youtube clips, April sends me chocolate and Christmas ornaments that remind her of dragon eggs.

There are far too many of you to list but you all help me and I am grateful.

But there is a dark side to the internet community as well. A darker side that is giving me the shits. Trolls are not uncommon, plagiarism is rife, a holier than thou attitude is starting to come to the fore, cronyism is becoming more obvious and mini dicatorships are springing up left right and centre.

And now the Australian mummybloggers have a manifesto.ย  I will not be signing the bloggers manifesto. I will not be told what to do. I will especially not be told what to do in such simplistic terms, as if I am a child tottering about within the interwebs being told to “play nicely now.”

I like my manifestos to have a little more substance, to be a little heavier in weight, I like a manifesto that makes me think. My personal favourite is A Humanist Manifesto. Then there is the Dada manifesto, or the Communist manifesto or even the SCUM manifesto to give my brain an early morning work out.

But this post isn’t about blogging this post is about Dory whispering to me, to just keep swimming.

I took my teenage son to the doctor yesterday with the sole intention of getting him a prescription for anti depressants.

No mother wants to hear their child tell them that there isn’t any point in living because life is just too fucking hard.

The pressures of a new school environment where every bogan bully wants to fight the big guy in order to prove they don’t have small dicks. The constant pain from his Ehlers Danlos syndrome. The ongoing grief and loss from the death of his confidante and main support person, his Nan. All these things combined with the normal adolescent pressures were enough to send my son hurtling into a well of darkness and despair.

Our family GP could tell I meant business and he wrote out a prescription for David. He talked to David about lifestyle choices and the need for exercise and sunshine.

He also in one sentence totally dismissed David’s Ehlers Danlos Syndrome as being a contributing factor towards his depression.

For Fucks Sake.

This is the reality of living with a rare genetic condition in Tasmania.

Sometimes it is all just too hard for me as well.

But I am an adult, with 45 years of life experience behind me. I know that nothing is ever as hopeless as it first looks and I also have the clay which grounds me and gives me an outlet for my rage.

Dear internet, here are the words that are in my head.

I give them to you, so that they stop flying around my mind.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Dorothy May 17, 2011, 10:03 am

    Love you, Kim. You know to trust yourself, follow your intuition. It tells you much more than any doctor, blogger, professional, whatever…

    I feel the same as you about many things. They bother me, yet not to the same extent as you. I haven’t been in the game as long as you, but I am learning fast. There seems to be a fine line to walk between being part of the “community” and staying true to yourself.

    You are not alone.

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 6:05 pm

      Thank you Dorothy ๐Ÿ™‚
      Also there seems to be a worrying “culture of silence” developing withing the Australian blogosphere and I do not like silence.

      • Dorothy May 17, 2011, 6:16 pm

        You’re right. We seem to talk more in person or via email….

  • sleepydwarf May 17, 2011, 10:03 am

    Oh Kim, I wish I could say something that helps, but the words aren’t there. I haven’t known you for long, but you & your family are often in my thoughts. It must be so frustrating to have doctors that want to help, but really don’t know or understand?
    I hope getting your words out out there helps, and I’m glad you have something to ground you.
    Take care x

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 6:07 pm

      Thanks Barb and on an unrelated note, the kiln will be fired on Thursday. It is exciting and nervewracking at the same time.

  • 2paw May 17, 2011, 10:04 am

    Oh dear, bullying is an epidemic but I don’t think anyone has a handle on it. There was bullying when I was at school. Nothing has changed about that, but all the electronic bits and bobs mean there is little escape from it. I am glad David is getting the help he needs at your insistence.
    Well, that manifesto looks lovely, but I think it will be difficult to be so sunshiny all the time!!

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 6:09 pm

      Hey 2paw, long time no chat, how are you? I like your ideas on the manifesto lol Yes it is all a bit Pollyanna.

  • amandab May 17, 2011, 10:06 am

    I was watching one of those big, commercial television detective dramas the other night (forgot to turn the tv off) and it was about abortion, and Ehlers Dans came up as the reason one of the women wanted to terminate. It was the first time I have heard it outside of the bloggy spaces that are yours & Veronicas.

    I was told that being prescribed the pill to manage period pain was not reason enough, it is a contraceptive. I wanted to tell the doctor what he could do with period pain, and see how he liked being doubled up & feeling nauseous every month, with 3 hot water bottles trying to ease the pain. But, of course, he was an expert who lectured at one of the prestigious universities in Melbourne, so how could I know more than him?

    Glad your sone got what he needed, regardless of the doctors thoughts.

    And I may have to go look at some of those other manifestos ๐Ÿ™‚

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 6:43 pm

      I was talking to V about your comment earlier on today and V said she had to turn the Television off because she was getting stabby with the errors in the show.
      I tried to give a good cross section of manifestos as examples.

      • amandab May 17, 2011, 7:10 pm

        I do have to say, I don’t remember either of you discussing it as being fatal, and it hadn’t come across as a skin sensitivity condition. I did turn the tv off at that point, but more because I wanted to snuggle under the covers with my book instead.

        • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 7:18 pm

          Veronica’s skin tears, as does Davids but it isn’t life threatening. It just means that if they fall over and skin their knees it is a bit messier than if you or I did it. Also the only real issue is if they need stitches as that has to be done by a plastic surgeon if they have an injury. they are a bit slower with healing as well and prone to infection but their skin cetainly doesn’t rip like tissue paper.

  • Beet May 17, 2011, 11:09 am

    sometimes you just have to settle for a doctor who will do what he’s told even if he can’t quite comprehend what you are dealing with.

    There’s a blogger’s manifesto? Hmmm i really have been under a rock the past month. Doubt I’ll be signing it either. Perhaps we need to be the bloggers version of Dada? Now that was an interesting movement!

    hugs xxx

  • lceel May 17, 2011, 11:18 am

    When I was a boy, in school, I had to deal with bullying. That was in the 1950’s. David, it’s been going on as long as people have lived together – in groups, in tribes, in communities and in, unfortunately, schools. Surviving the bullies is a right of passage. Surviving the bullies is how you know you are the better man, for the moment. Deep inside, those who would bully have the same fears, trials and problems that you do – it’s just that they handle them poorly – or perhaps, in the only way they know how, because their parents haven’t taught them any better.

    I read your Mom. I read Veronica. I have some notion of the people you come from. I have an idea of how you’ve been raised. And more than that, I live with a woman who has EDS – so even though it’s not me, I do know and understand your pain – your physical pain. I see it in my wife every day. I’m willing to wager that you are a fine and upstanding young man that any man would be proud to call his son. Don’t let the bullies win, boy. You are better than that.

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 6:44 pm

      Thank you Lou, I will show David your comment when I see him next.

  • Elephant's Child May 17, 2011, 12:00 pm

    My heart hurts after reading this. Lucky that your doctor was prepared to come to the party with the prescription. Ignorant of your doctor to dismiss the living with constant pain as a contributing factor. Lucky that your boy trusts his mum enough to share the dark spot he is in. Unsurprising given what I have gleaned of his mum’s character. Good thoughts are wending your way.
    Oh, and I swim too to help with the pain. And am mightily pissed off when it doesn’t.

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 6:50 pm

      I was thinking of suggesting swimming to Dave as a form of pain relief but I don’t know how well the suggestion will be received. Dave actually spoke to his sister Veronica, they are very close. Then once V had told me, Dave and I were actually able to talk to each other properly. We had been banging heads and growling at each other a lot for the past week or so. I really apreciate your comments, they are always lovely. thank you

  • Marita May 17, 2011, 12:51 pm

    I am glad you got David to the doctors, I hope that despite the doctors dismissive attitude to EDS the medication he has prescribed will work. Being different is such a struggle, being different as a teenager is almost impossible.

    Am in total agreement about the Bloggers Manifesto, it is a little idealistic and simplistic.

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 6:59 pm

      I hope so as well. Luckily V has been our “crash test dummy” and can talk Dave through the possible side effects of the meds. The only good thing about the teenage years is that you eventually do grow out of them #sigh I hope your girls teenage years aren’t too difficult.

  • Liz May 17, 2011, 1:24 pm

    Firstly, for fucks sake indeed. Doctors, don’t get me started. But I’m sure that with the meds and a mum like you fighting right along side him David will get to a place very soon where he understands that it gets better. Thank goodness we aren’t teenagers forever. Many good thoughts for him and you too.
    Secondly, blogger manifesto… well, I don’t blog, but I’m with you. Anyone tells me I need to sign anything that really just should be common sense and manners can go… well, they can get stuffed. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Love your recent photos btw, I am thinking of painting the trees, they are speaking to me. The paint colours and I have talks too. Keep swimming, keep breathing, keep doing what you love. We love you!

  • Amanda May 17, 2011, 1:52 pm

    Same here – my blog is a big part of my grief therapy.

  • river May 17, 2011, 2:19 pm

    Manifesto?? Why do we/they need one?
    I’m surprised at your GP so casually dismissing the EDS issue like that. Everyone knows that constant pain is a contributor to depression. I’m glad David is getting help though and with you and Veronica to help him through he’ll come to realise that life certainly is worth living after all.
    Love the photo! There’s light at the end of that tunnel/corridor.

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 7:02 pm

      I have no idea River, some people are just naturally bossy and like to set themselves up as supreme ruler of the universe.
      I took that photo on Sunday, it is a spooky walkway in an underground carpark, I feel very vulnerable when I park my car in this particular car park.

  • sharon May 17, 2011, 2:28 pm

    Just kick those negatives right out of that handy looking door Kim. And pedantics could give your GP the right in the EDS not causing depression in that it’s the symptoms of EDS that are depressive rather than the disease causing the imbalanced brain chemicals at the root of classic depression. Hope the drugs help David and yes, sunshine is a great cure all but it’s not necessarily in good supply in a Tasmanian winter. A good daily dose of Vitamin D and some fish oil capsules might help him. David is a great lad and he’ll grow into a wonderful man sooner than you think. Just keep telling him that, preferably with your arms around him. Boys are such a worry.


    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 7:03 pm

      Boys are a worry indeed. As well you know. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • tiff May 17, 2011, 2:42 pm

    Sending love Kim. Please know that I think of you and Veronica and your family all the time.
    Your GP just made the doctorcide list. No. Don’t argue. he on the list.

    • amandab May 17, 2011, 4:16 pm

      I wish there was a like button for your comment, Tiff ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Veronica May 17, 2011, 4:39 pm

      Oh your comment made me laugh!

      • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 7:03 pm

        I do Love you Tiff xox

        • Karen May 17, 2011, 7:32 pm

          Tiffy, I love you. I love this whole reply stream, actually!
          Kim, this was a moving post. You’re not afraid to go to darker places I wish I could myself on my blog (I do in my writing). Wishing you love.

          • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 7:35 pm

            Thank you Karen, I loved your post today. Very funny and very, very true

  • Veronica May 17, 2011, 4:41 pm

    When the blog with integrity movement hit, I got all grumpy because really, do I need someone else telling me how to behave decently online? I mean, REALLY? And it was a bandwagon and everyone jumped on it and yada yada. At the end of the day, it didn’t change anything, except to make a lot of bloggers very eye rolly. I can’t see that the manifesto is any different really and considering I’ve been messing about online for years, I think I know how to act decently by now. But of course, someone needs to state the obvious, don’t they? It wouldn’t be the Interwebs without it.

    Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming swimming, just keep swimming.

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 7:05 pm

      It certainly wouldn’t be the interwebs without someone stating the bleeding obvious at all. lol. Somedays I get so “eye rolly ” it is a wonder I don’t fall over ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Barbara May 17, 2011, 6:17 pm

    Shit Kim, I’m stunned by how dippy your doctor is. I’d like to third Tiff’s comment.

    I’m really sad to hear about David but I think he was given the right family to see him through this. Does he write at all? I know how much you and Veronica need to let the words out and I wonder if he is similar.

    As for the bloggers manifesto, I hadn’t heard of it before. I clicked on the link and, to quote V, it made me very “eye rolly”. I don’t think I’ll bother to look into it any more.

    I love the mental image of your words with wings lazily circling. I hope some got out with this post.

    lots of love

  • Barbara May 17, 2011, 6:18 pm

    Oh, and I meant to say, I follow the Dory way of life as well sometimes. We sang it an awful lot on Saturday night!

    • frogpondsrock May 17, 2011, 7:08 pm

      I was so proud of you on Saturday! Having “a dory moment” has also made its way into my everyday language. I use it as a stalling tactic when I have forgotten something I should be able to remember.

  • Marie May 18, 2011, 1:28 am

    I’m a bit taken aback by the blogger’s manifesto. What is their problem? Do we still need school monitors, prefects and pressure to conform? Although I have to also say that just the name “mummy bloggers” gives me the heebie jeebies. I think I’ll skip it – I was always in detention at school for insubordination, bad attitude and lack of school spirit and age doesn’t seem to have mellowed me. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I admit that I had to look up Ehlersโ€“Danlos syndrome – you must have to face this a lot, that people don’t know what it is. How sad that even a doctor fails to see that condition that gives chronic pain isn’t something that can drain your spirit totally. I have chronic osteoarthritis and I know, especially in winter when it’s very dark and cold outside, that I have to really watch myself lest I slip into a pit of despair. It doesn’t take much.

    I can see how hopeless life can seem for a child going through the confusion of puberty, feeling different, misunderstood and ostracised by his peers PLUS a condition that causes pain. The tunnel must seem neverending. And you are right to be really worried as there are plenty of studies linking bullying with depression and suicidality in adolescents. You do what you need to in order to protect your son – wear out all the welcome mats at schools, doctors, specialists, wherever it takes. He’s lucky to have you batting for his side.

  • Eccentricess May 18, 2011, 9:16 am

    The manifesto interested me, in the way that starfish in beach rock pools interested me, Look, study, but don’t touch.
    I like what Veronica wrote about knowing how to behave decently online. I’ve been online for over a decade now and have had my share of liars, users and delightful wonderful people. Just like real life.
    I just behave as myself, treat others with dignity and run away and cry when people are mean.

    I just wondered if it would be worth requesting some lovely doctor who has experience in EDS to give your Doctor a call or email to explain it a bit more?

    In my personal experience of pain and depression it is SO much easier to fight the emotional aspect when you are not in constant pain. So much.

  • pixie May 18, 2011, 10:35 am

    I dont get the bloggers manifesto at all……………????

    I love Tiff’s comment too.

    Im sorry David needed to get meds but at least he is getting some help……….I suffer from both severe depression and chronic pain so I do feel for him.


  • Nola May 18, 2011, 2:22 pm

    Found you via Meegan…..I love your blog and your writing style!! I have you in my favourites now, so there is no escape:)

  • bells May 18, 2011, 9:34 pm

    you have reminded me, firstly, that putting words onto a page or a screen can help with that incessant internal dialogue that can be so very damaging and difficult.

    Secondly, a manifesto was needed? FFS.

    Thank you for sharing.

  • Ali May 18, 2011, 11:17 pm

    Ah doctors, such wankers. I have met so many docs who are unable to cope with an informed intellegent patient who doesn’t treat hem like a god and unwilling to admit they don’t know everything. So often they seem unwilling to learn. Even more common conditions like rheumatoid arhritis (like I have) are commonly misunderstood by doctors. On an RA site I recently read a list of common questions that annoying docs often ask. One of the main ones that I have regularly experienced is “You seem to be in more pain than we would expect for an RA patient”. So many sufferers have been told this and studies have shown that RA patients frequently have to go to extremes to seek pain relief. Docs are determined to stick to their preconceived ideas and ignore the reality.

    I’m finding a lot of the “blogging as a business” push really hard to swallow. I think for so many of us blogging is our safe space, our private release (even though it’s actually in a public forum). The last thing I need is advice on conduct and tbh I find all of the grow your blog, monetise your blog stuff irritating. I think I am becoming a crotchety old lady but advice and guidlines on how to use my blog make me really twitchy. I’m sure it’s well intentioned but grrrrrrrrr.

  • Maureen (Mo) Strom May 19, 2011, 1:51 am

    Hhmmm, was so busy yesterday that I wasn’t able to get on until wayyyy late & the brain started spinning so fast that I really couldn’t sort things out.. Frankly, not much better now.. I know several things for sure tho.
    #1. I am damn tired of being Bossed. I not only am not going to sign and/or agree with any “manifesto”, I Am not even going to read one..EVER..
    #2. Love you Kim & the way you write. As we say over here, “You call em like you see em”. For me that is what I like.
    #3.Good for you on insisting that you know your son’s needs better than some Dr.
    #4. Swim on sister, if you look over your fin you’ll see me and a whole school of fish’s just happy to be swimming w/you..

  • janet May 19, 2011, 11:45 am

    As you know I don’t have a blog …but I know I wouldn’t sign or follow anyone’s manifesto. Wouldn’t that go against the whole concept of a personal blog? Give David a big hug from all of us icefishers. I wouldn’t be a teenager again for anything. But soon he’ll be a twenty-something and that’s a better place. All three of our kids went to counseling, two took meds during adolescence, and they didn’t have EDS to make things more painful. I hope life will feel better as he keeps on ‘swimming’ & making music and outpaces the bullies. May he come through this centered and strong!

  • Bubbles May 19, 2011, 8:40 pm

    I absolutely love that picture. Inspiration for photography.

    Hope David gets better. xo.

  • Kakka May 20, 2011, 9:58 am

    Is your doctor a moron? I live in a world of pain, so does my mother and let me tell you pain leads to depression, let alone all the other things your amazing son is living with just being a teenager. But it is not only the pain, he is different because of EDS, so he has to deal with that as well. Fucking doctors with flippant attitudes give me the shits – sorry I don’t normally swear on blogs, but christ all mighty this just makes me mad.

    And hugs to you for being the strong woman that you are, holding all of them together as mothers do, while suffering your own pain at losing your Mum. xxxx

  • Candy May 21, 2011, 10:52 pm

    There’s a manifesto? Good lord I need to bother with networking more, then I’d know about these things.
    Anyhoo, just popping in to say my lovely that I want to give you a badge/award for your beautiful blog http://candysfamily.com/2011/05/21/kreativ-blogger-award/ It’s up to you if you want to post it, pass it on or not (that’s ok)
    You were the first person I thought of once I got it ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

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