A Piece of Gold

Last night Steve emailed me, excited and inspired over a recent series of events, and he called it 'a piece of gold'.

The shiny precious metal may be worth a lot to some, but this little nugget is life changing and potentially, life saving. The ripple effect, a person in a community having a positive impact upon others who in turn inspire yet more people, is evident here. Steve started the ripple, and a new friend, Ross, will help keep it going.

From Steve:

"Last Friday I spoke at a Lunch Club meeting near Busselton and one of the guys present got talking to a friend earlier this week about my presentation which then resulted in the friend, Ross, calling me today. We had an amazing conversation for over half an hour at the end of which I asked him to email me the info below and attached which I will forward to the BDI with the recommendation Ross does the Community Presenters course.

"Ross is very keen to share his story with anyone who'll listen....He just wants to prevent other people having to suffer the way he did. He explained to me how at his worst point he had 4 different plans to commit suicide. Fortunately his wife found him at the first one just in time."

Meet Ross:

"Further to our phone conversation this afternoon attached is the "Depression Flow Chart" that is based on my own journey through the last 4 years. My problem started in 2008, when the GFC. hit us all. As I mentioned to you I stressed over the perceived loss of our super fund and as the GFC. got worse so did my stress, then anxiety get worse. I obviously lost control of where I was and I went very quickly down the awful slide into very deep depression to the point where I came within the smallest fraction of taking my own life. Now I have well and truly come out of that revolting & very frightening situation to the point on the chart of "Security, Self esteem & Self reliance."

What's this flow chart he is talking about? Steve calls it a work of art. Ross explains, "I see the chart as my personal journey and it may be slightly different for other people. The line I have drawn is meant to show that the journey through can be quite rough and at times, appear to be out of control."

Take a look for yourself:

click image for larger picture

The Stages of Stress, Anxiety, Depression and Recovery

It's a perfect visualisation of the merry go round of mental illness but clearly shows the path to hope and recovery.

Ross and Steve are liaising with the Black Dog Institute to get Ross on their Community Presenters course. Ross is eager to shine a light on a hidden subject often bereft of hope.

Thanks Ross, for sharing your journey and stepping forward to make a difference in others' lives. Steve was right, this story is pure gold, and it's no coincidence that the image used here is of the famous Aussie nugget "Welcome Stranger".

We'd love to hear your thoughts here.