Farmer Barleymow

15 Dec 2019
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I overheard a farmer talking. Asked what he wished he'd been told right at the start he replied "Never run after the runaway lamb. It will return once it realises its going the wrong way." My thought patterns work at speed and, after I'd run through a couple of cartoon versions in my head of how he'd come to this, I had a wee laugh and realised it was appropriate to my journey with depression.

The fastest and most productive parts of journeying through, for me, have been when I have witnessed my depression and acknowledged it, and then calmly pushed through in the times when I've not been held hostage. In other words, when parts of me have felt like the runaway lamb, I've relied on other parts of me to hold. However basic you may think they are, the daily shuffle up the path, the daily look to the horizon, the daily shower, the daily fresh shirt, the daily eggs and tea, they are stalwarts in being your calm reassurance and guide.

Don't fear the score. Use it as binoculars to see where the lamb is. Then together we'll carry on.

Love from

The room above the garage

A Moodscope member.

A Moodscope member.

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Comments

Molly

Dec. 15, 2019, 12:41 a.m.

Hi RATG, it’s interesting reading blogs like this, as a sufferer of depression all my life, I did carry on, I did work, I did eat, I did socialise, I did walk, I did get out of bed, I did bath every day, I did change every day. Not any more!! I’m a great believer of letting things be, letting change come naturally when it’s ready. How I have been criticised for not helping myself by professionals. Well you wouldn’t force someone to walk a mile without legs. I have faith that everything will turn out for the best, when it is meant to do so. It’s what has happened in the past and what will happen again. I don’t have a daily shower, change my clothes daily, or have eggs and tea daily, or walk up a path (I haven’t got one, just an awkward step). Accused of being negative recently, yes I am as it happens! Life got tough! In more ways than one! Now eggs. I love an egg. How would we all like our eggs? Scrambled, fried or poached? Molly xx

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greenjean

Dec. 15, 2019, 7:37 a.m.

'

the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:36 a.m.

Hello Molly, that faith is your super power! Trusting it will be ok no matter how it seems is top dollar. Eggs...I once blogged on here about how I tried and tried to cook poached eggs. Two years of it!! I got there eventually. Poached please! Love ratg x

The Gardener

Dec. 15, 2019, 2:55 p.m.

Molly, scrambled with smoked salmon and champagne, for breakfast of course! Done it twice, I believe. xx

Molly

Dec. 15, 2019, 4:03 p.m.

RATG, I have a confession to make, I’ve never cooked a poached egg in my life! Gardener, oooh that sounds nice xx

Molly

Dec. 15, 2019, 12:48 a.m.

You might like some crispy bacon with it. I can do that. Or you might prefer a lamb shank. Will that be the one that got away, or the one that didn’t?

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:36 a.m.

Laughing!

Molly

Dec. 15, 2019, 4:04 p.m.

Lol!

Liz

Dec. 15, 2019, 4:29 a.m.

Hi RATG... as someone who has wanted to escape for a lot of her life, the runaway lamb in me is very strong. I don't feel I have depression any more because I can see the change in me and the way I deal with things. However I acknowledge that I do have low moods and sometimes, real anxiety. That's not to say I sit on (what I often accuse my husband being on) "a lofty cloud of perfection". In other words what's it like up there on your cloud - my sarcastic response. Now I have steered the conversation away from the lamb. I wonder if the lamb has a wee cloud following it so it tries to escape it. Maybe my take on this is that occasionally I will get absolutely showered on (if I am the lamb in the scenario) and a wee dark cloud will get me so instead of running, I sometimes don't control the cloud, I will find refuge eventually. This conversation is now me not sleeping after a good night out where I only drank water (very unusual for me) and I've started taking my pills again after a long gap. So hence the weirdness, but I accept my weirdness like a friend, not the enemy I thought it was. So there it is, I'm just a wee weird lamb, part of a bigger flock.

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:38 a.m.

Hello Liz, I do t think there’s anyone who doesn't have a weirdness so here’s to it! Love ratg x

Ach UK

Dec. 15, 2019, 7:26 a.m.

Hi RATG, Glad to read your blog today. Thank you. Yep, your old farmer friend was right, young lambs will "bolt", but most return . . . . and if you're a hill farmer with binoculars, patience and sheepdogs there's a good chance that lamb will produce wee lambs herself and live to make old mutton :--) Thank you too this morning for the 'Quote of the day' from Leonard Cohen's " Anthem ". I'd not heard that song of his. Very powerful. I'm not sure whether I'm going to get sunshine or clouds today, and this wee lamb hasn't legs for " bolting " anymore . . . few cracks in me hooves these days . . only make mutton stew now . . ( but I like mutton stew . . ) Love to you RATG, May you hear the birds, and the foundryman recycling the cracked bell to forge another tenor! XX Ach.

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:40 a.m.

Hello Ach, your words are always so calming for me. Love it. Lovely to see you my friend xx

Ach UK

Dec. 16, 2019, 6:33 p.m.

Go safe RATG XX Ach.

Leila

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:09 a.m.

Thank you. Nothing else to say x

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:40 a.m.

Thank you Leila, love ratg x.

Leila

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:09 a.m.

Thank you. Nothing else to say x

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Leila

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:09 a.m.

Thank you. Nothing else to say x

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Tutti Frutti

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:25 a.m.

Thanks RATG. I liked your blog Love TF x

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:41 a.m.

Hello Tutti, I’m glad, good to see you, love ratg x.

Sarah yellow rose

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:34 a.m.

Hi Ratg , thank you for your blog. I always feel comfort from reading your blogs, it’s great to see you on here today. Xx

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:42 a.m.

Hello Sarah, it’s lovely to see your name, I remember years back when you picked it. Thank you for saying that, I’m so glad there’s comfort. Love ratg x.

Lex

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:41 a.m.

I LOVE this, RATG

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Ach UK

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:59 a.m.

@ Lex, Thoughts to you for tomorrow Lex. XX Ach.

the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:43 a.m.

Hello Lex, and I love that you do! Love to you, ratg x.

Dido

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:57 a.m.

great blog!

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:44 a.m.

Great reply thank you! Love ratg x

Orangeblossom

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:28 a.m.

Thanks for your very encouraging blog RATG. I found your blog very helpful. A few years ago, I think it was summer 2016, I went on a course & one of the recurrent phrases was “Feel the pain and do it anyway”. The phrase comes to mind from time to time!

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:46 a.m.

Hello Ob, it’s so true, I’ve watched it unfurl in my children. Anger when they are actually disappointed. Recognise, face and feel the disappointment and they can go on. Me too. Lovely to see you, love ratg x.

Oli

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:45 a.m.

I like the blog ratg. The thing that got me thinking about behaviourism again as a way of understanding what we do was hearing something about training dogs. If the dog runs off and you go hollering and chasing after, the dog is learning that by running away you will join in his fun game and you can’t catch him. When it eventually comes back but you get angry at him for the way he had ran off the dog is learning — in that moment — that it gets punished for coming back. That was definitely a light bulb moment for me. The way and the timing of how we reinforce behaviour is important. Some mood states are uncomfortable so it’s natural you want to avoid them. When I felt low I didn’t do much. If I was asleep, or as good as, then I didn’t have to think or feel. If I was anxious and didn’t go out then the feelings calmed down. It was surprising at first for me to realise this was no different from chasing after running dogs then yelling at them for coming back. But once you’ve seen the idea clearly in one thing you start noticing the principle is everywhere. Thanks ratg!

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:49 a.m.

So much this Oli! It’s been a game changer for me too. Resisting the obvious was so damaging for me. It’s enlightening to learn. Lovely to see you. Gig last night? Love ratg x.

The Gardener

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:51 a.m.

Lovely analogy Oli, and the blog RATG - I have to find a way out of the morass which is my mind the last few days, worsened today.

Oli

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:54 a.m.

Not last night but a really fun one on Friday. There was a contingent of Lithuanians in the pub for some reason and boy were they up for a good time! Danced all night. Totally fun, wide age ranges, lots of cultures and colours all having a great time. I love London when it's like this! x

Molly

Dec. 15, 2019, 4:11 p.m.

I like your comment Oli, and the fact you had Funtime Friday! Xx

The Gardener

Dec. 15, 2019, 9:56 a.m.

I wrote last night about being so upset at the end of an 'era', 73 years. It was not sentiment, but that my last visit had been so miserable, without being melodramatic I reckon it was the worst moment of my life, coming at a time when I was ill-equiped to cope, 5 years caring for Mr G, no money, huge legal affairs, finances and taxes in 2 countries, house sale, picking up life alone, and making something of it - and my ideas here being stillborn, did everything I could to make my shop welcoming, and I sat all day, heating and lights full on, for nothing, Do I give in? What the **** do I do with it?

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Oli

Dec. 15, 2019, 10:06 a.m.

Gardener I can see how that's stressful. Personally, I don't like stress so I'd start thinking about de-stressing. But that's me. I've no idea what's "normal" for the shop. I know my bass player runs a mug business too, but most of his year's income from it comes in the two months up to Christmas -- so being extremely quiet at other times of the year isn't something he worries about... now. Sorry to hear you're feeling down with the situation.

the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 10:07 a.m.

Darling TG, lovely to see you xx. My immediate thought for you is to day dream first. Paint the picture you’d like and then work out how to get there. I don’t mean to sound light, empty or flippant but I wonder if it would help to switch the focus away from feeling the hurt if you have to make a change? Love ratg xx.

The Gardener

Dec. 15, 2019, 10:25 a.m.

Thank you both - I am in a sort of void - hugely busy, stressed, yes, but the stress led to activity. I have nothing I HAVE to do except to keep body and soul together. Will focus on making beautiful things - useless, but pleasing - plus listening to beautiful music. Like your pub

The Gardener

Dec. 15, 2019, 10:28 a.m.

Time out! Your pub night, Oli. I used to love lively pubs. Remember one New Years Eve, with friends having a domestic. Wandered down the road - Devon somewhere - terrific knees-up in the pub, did not dare go in, 'not our type!' Grrrrr.

Molly

Dec. 15, 2019, 4:30 p.m.

Do you do any advertising Gardener? Maybe some posters up in the area?

The Gardener

Dec. 15, 2019, 10 a.m.

Worse was to come this morning. The wind was near gale force when I went to bed. I have spoken of my 'annexed' garden, that of the presbytery, which nobody wants and nobody lives there. When I open my bedroom curtains I looked straight on to a lovely weeping willow. It blew down in the night. The loss of a tree, these days, is a disaster, it will not be replaced - and all I see now is the grey concrete wall of the next house. As I looked, friends walked past to Mass, she has been diagnosed with throat cancer. Can anybody see light at the end of my tunnel, please? Lex, my thoughts are with you. xx

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the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 10:09 a.m.

I’m so sad for you. Like you, I have a tree I rely upon. My half a tree, often written about on here. He’s huge, but grows only on one side. He is my daily strength with no word of a lie! Can you plant a sapling?

the room above the garage

Dec. 15, 2019, 10:10 a.m.

My tree is not mine and not in my garden so I have no control over his health or care or future. It’s sad when they go. So human like in ways x.

The Gardener

Dec. 15, 2019, 11:13 a.m.

Worser and worser! I intended to rescue a garden table to use in my new 'archive' room. The wreckage! The willow has taken the superb apple tree - lovely shape, blossom, delicious apples. Under the lot is my crushed garden table. Looking at the willow tree roots, it is obvious that the excessive rainfall has loosened the roots. The neighbour (of the hideous wall) insisted that walnut and willow were cut right back - left excellent entry for gale, which has devastated the lot, just the gaunt remains of the walnut.

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Valerie

Dec. 15, 2019, 3:13 p.m.

Oh TG,I am so sorry.We had what sounded like a mini-tornedo here-UK Midlands-in the middle of the night.In the past we've had a few little earthquakes here,and I thought it was another one,rumbling noises.Wonder if it's part of the same weather disturbance you are having over there? You will be better again soon,when those ghosts of Christmas past go away.xx

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Valerie

Dec. 15, 2019, 3:18 p.m.

The daily shuffle up the path,I like that expression ! I understand that the reason chefs manage to produce perfect poached eggs is because they trim them into a nice shape with scissors.Hope your tree remains safe,agree with you,they vibrate with character and energy,wonderful creatures.xx

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Lexi

Dec. 15, 2019, 4:09 p.m.

Lovely RATG. Hope you are well xo

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Frankie

Dec. 15, 2019, 5:30 p.m.

The daily shuffle; so true dear RATG. But the shuffle can become a stroll, then a walk, then a stride. The beauty is that each, even the shuffle, is moving forwards ... Thank-you. Frankie xx

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Valerie

Dec. 15, 2019, 8:52 p.m.

Indeed it is Frankie,it is better than a retreat! Hugs,xx

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