All I Want For Christmas

Hey everyone. I don’t know what Santa will bring me this year and to be honest I’ve got a pretty exhaustive list of which this post is only a flavour. Items included in this list are A New CD Player, perfume, tights, make up, the usual girlie stuff plus what every woman wants but won’t admit to wanting, namely enough money to update my wardrobe a collection of poems to be published, an Independent Scotland, and many good nights in the company of friends at cultural events throughout Glasgow, Scotland and beyond.

As I said this is only a flavour of what I hope will be keeping Santa’s elves busy right up until they pack the delivery for Baillieston. However there is one present I want more than any other it’s for my flatmate but it can and should be delivered to others as well with all who need it receiving this precious gift.

I’ll bet your all wondering what this mystery present can possibly be. Well I’ll tell you it is something which will help people who often find this time not to be as I see it the season of carols, nights out, and nativity plays but a time of loneliness when they hurt even more than they do at the rest of the year. The present I would like Santa to deliver is better health to my flatmate and those like her who have experience of depression.

Now there those amongst our number who believe that because depression is an unseen condition that it doesn’t actually exist and that the cure for those who say they have it is a bloody good shake. Not only is this insulting to those have the condition it is also offensive to their family and friends

Mental Health and depression in particular are very misunderstood conditions with those who have them often wrongly perceived as a danger to the public. Let me set the record straight my flatmate and many millions like her are a danger to no-one except perhaps themselves and to say otherwise is a lie based on fear, ignorance, and prejudice. This issue needs to be addressed and it needs to be done now.

To say that these attitudes make me angry beyond description would be the understatement of this or for that matter any other millenium. I am furious at the way some smug sanctimonious little smart arses think they can label people and indeed judge them without knowing anything of their circumstances. Well let me put it another way how they feel if they received a Christmas card from a close friend or family member with the inscription ‘thanks for putting up with me’ I know exactly how they’d feel they would be devastated and to say otherwise is a lie. Believe me I should know because I did receive a Christmas card with those words written all too clearly it was the card I got from my flatmate and it broke my heart to read it.

I mean how can explain to Janette she has many talents and gifts and help her lift the curse of this depression? If only I could find a way to do it but it’s hard, it’s really hard and I’m struggling to get the message across to her. You know last week she went back to her former work to deliver some cards she had for former colleagues and was gobsmacked with the amount of cards she received and the goodwill shown towards her but I wasn’t. I knew what her colleagues thought and for that matter still think of her and their opinion of her is far higher than she seems to think. Yet somehow this still seems to surprise her.

It shouldn’t do, I mean Janette is a kind, caring and articulate woman who has a far greater degree of intelligence than to quote our First Minister Alex Salmond ‘the lord snooty’s’ of this world would give her credit for. This can be bourne out by the fact that she has never been unemployed since leaving school at the age of 16 and has held supervisory jobs in many of the organisations she has worked for. So to those who dare to mock her or others affected by these invisible impairments I say only this. I hope to god you never have to live with depression whether it affects you or someone in your family because I seriously doubt you would have the intelligence, compassion or empathy to cope with the difficulties and challenges it would bring. Believe me until you have live with this debilitating condition or with someone who has it, you have no idea how it can impact on your life or the lives of those around you.

So no matter what my extensive Christmas list may be there is but one present I want more than any other and that is to see my flatmate, best friend, and sister in all but name restored to full health. Now that would be priceless beyond all measure and it really is all I want for Christmas.

Love And Best Wishes
Gayle X


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