6 min read

Has anything helped my depression?

Is it possible to out run, out wild swim, out photograph depression?
Boats passing by the main square in Venice. A large clock tower is to the left.

hello camera

This week’s photos are from Venice. Back when all I needed was a simple camera and new view.

You can get prints of the photos in this weeks newsletter on my print store or you can tip me on Ko-Fi so I can buy film for my camera.


The Rialto Bridge in Venice backlit at sunset.

hello computer

Has anything helped my depression?

I’m depressed. I’m waiting for the doctor to call to discuss it. But hang on, aren’t I already doing everything right?

I do wild swimming beacause...

Still depressed. Maybe because I didn’t do it today? Do I have to do it every day? I didn’t do it today because it was a lovely day so I went for a walk because... “Exercise is a powerful antidepressant, studies show. It can work even better than drugs.”

Still depressed. But it was lovely out. The sun rose through foggy clouds. Gorgeous soft orange clouds filled the sky. The tide slowly came in. We saw a murmuration of birds in the bay and the sun kissed tops of wind turbines on the horizon. I took photos. I chatted to my wife. Yet… I’m still depressed. How though? Because...

Oh I know. It’s because I walked not ran today, right? But I ran yesterday and running helps because...

This week I’ve ran, swam, walked, had vitamin D and “vitamin sea” (vomits). I’ve been creative with photography every day. Last week I was doing art. What more can I be doing? Should I run to river, swim in nature and walk home taking photos?

I’m waiting for the doctor to call because I don’t think my issues can be solved by googling and reading either clickbait articles or articles where something genuinely did help one person. Clearly I need something more than what I’m doing right now.

I’m tired though.


I wrote this a few days ago. At the end of the day I got an email from a newsletter I subscribe to that had xx tips for burnout. Maybe I wasn’t depressed? Maybe I was burnt out? Did I need a break? Was the last 2 years not enough? Am I burnt out from trying to be ok and power through a pandemic?

I read the newsletter. “Try exercise. Maybe a hug?” ... a hug? A hug? How about some whale song, a Cadburys Flake and a hot bath with candles? Arg! Really? I’m so tired of these generic answers. How does a hug help a person with sensory issues? It’s literally the worst thing someone could do.

breathes

Maybe these things do actually work for that writer, for all the writers. I’ve probably been guilty of doing the same over the past 2 years. I can relate to that. I can’t relate to the answers. I’ve tried them all this week. I ended up standing on the beach not knowing if I was crying or if my makeup had got in my eye and either way I wasn’t able to care. I wasn’t sad or upset over elements in my life. I felt nothing. Was I so emotionally broken that my body produced tears that I was unable to mentally process?

Turns out it was makeup and my eye has been watering for 4 days now. I’m, thankfully, not that far gone. But hey, never say never right?

I’ve got a meeting with my doctor on Tuesday. They’ve asked me to email them about what I feel is wrong so they can prepare. That’s new and useful. It’s a long road ahead. Medication is complex and will take time to test and adjust. I haven’t got it to work in the past but that was pre-autism diagnosis. Maybe there’s something new I can try? Therapy may not be available and it’s a 2 year wait for an ADHD diagnosis. I’m not sure what they can offer but I have to ask because I can’t afford the £50-70/week private care even if I feel like a weekly session would be really useful.

For the past few years I’ve been thinking “Oh this worked for them so maybe it’ll work for me too?” It hasn’t. I need actual help. If any of this feels familiar call your local doctor and ask for help. Fighting depression is incredibly draining and hard to do alone. While I have my wife who I can talk to I can’t talk to her every minute of every day about these things. It’s not fair on her and my depression tells me there’s no point anyway. I need a third party who isn’t going to tell me to try a wellness activity while reminding myself that “I am a beautiful soul”.


A view down the grand canal in Venice towards a cathedral.

hello world


Boats moored on a canal in Venice.

helloooo nurse

Toxic positivity affirmations are bad. Have a rubbish one instead.

I am my light. Alexa, turn me on. ... Alexa! Turn on my light… Alexa?

Empty moorings on a canal in Venice.