Gathering up the ocean in my arms

WeeGeeWhen Ruby asked me if I’d like to contribute to Canvas I was excited. As in really excited. As in ‘I’m a bit bouncy and excited’ excited. I bounced around for a bit, being all excited and then it started to dawn on me that if I wanted to write something for Canvas I’d actually have to sit down and write something. If I’m honest I sat down to try and write something quite a few times. I’ve always been a perfectionist. And I’ve always been struck by the irony that when you’re a perfectionist there is no such thing as perfection. Continue reading


As Parents Age…

CateThere’s a moment in our lives, for all of us, when we realise that our parents have grown old, and after a lifetime of looking to them, now they are looking to us.  A lifetime of you being their ‘child’, now in some ways, that is reversed.  The only way you avoid this is if you completely cut off all contact with them some time before. Otherwise it’s a stage of our lives that is impossible to ignore. It is a time that can have enormous effect on both our mental health and theirs.  Everything has changed.  Now you realise that you’re finally ‘grown up’. Continue reading

Miss Diagnoses

DeeDee newAnyone who has ever looked up a “serious mental illness” like bipolar disorder has been smacked in the face with dire warnings and frightening statistics about misdiagnosis. If you google my lifelong companion ADD, you’ll see lots and lots of dire warnings and hand-wringing about overdiagnosis. But you won’t run into are dire warnings, frightening statistics, and hand-wringing about repeated, compounded misdiagnoses.

Continue reading

Christmas With Mental Illness

CateIn my country of New Zealand, I think it’s fair to say that most people celebrate the occasion of Christmas, and that those who choose not to do so, don’t on religious or cultural basis.  There’s been a few years in my past when I have chosen not to celebrate Christmas, and that has been all about mental illness. Continue reading

The Addict In Me Is Not Scum!

CateMy first day at University (College in some countries), as a 31-year-old, turned out a little different from what I had hoped.  It was a big thing I was doing, heading into study as an adult, after about four years of mental illness.  I was pretty anxious, and that showed when I found myself sitting in a Chinese language class rather than the Psychology class I had enrolled for.  I made a quiet escape, knowing full well that while learning Chinese might be interesting and even useful, I knew I would never pass.  Languages and me have never gone together. Continue reading

Coming Out

RubyAn important note from Ruby:  These words are not my own.  I did not write this piece.  I may wish (very much) that I had, but this is something written by Cate Reddell, who has an amazing gift with not just how she puts her words together, but how each one of them is imbued with her beautiful voice, and her beautiful conviction.  Some of you may be familiar with Cate’s blog, Infinite Sadness… or hope?  If you aren’t, have a look, it is well worth your time.  

We’ve never done any “guest posts” on Canvas, and that’s not what this is meant to be at all. Continue reading

Thank God For People Like You


The Best Little Gingerbread House in the World

The Best Little Gingerbread House in the World

I’m guessing it’s no secret that I have been very absent from the blogging world at large lately.  The mono has me exhausted, my sciatica has kicked up so I’ve been in a great deal of pain, and my migraines have been pretty nasty as well.

Then there are the good things that have taken what little time and energy I do have. Continue reading

Blog for Mental Health 2013 Badges

Lulu newIn the blog project Blog for Mental Health 2012, a summons went out to all mental health bloggers.   In this summons, Blog for Mental Health 2012 asked mental health bloggers from all reaches of the world with any diagnosis (es) to take a pledge.  This pledge was the following:

I pledge my commitment to the Blog for Mental Health 2012 Project. Continue reading