Disability, mental health and recovery are interchangeable and they shouldn’t be just measured by economic ideas only. It should just be feeling better, feeling hopeful, feeling valued and accepted – they should be the measures.
WANDERING WOMBS, WITCHES (and orgasms). A taster…of what I will be writing about next in relation to intergenerational family stories, what my research has uncovered and in particular Jane Brady’s death at 82 in Sunbury Mental Hospital.
Most records about the past prior to the 1930’s are public (and even more recent ones sometimes). But that doesn’t mean they are not hidden. Hidden from dinner table conversations, hidden from important intergenerational health discussions and hidden by what I think is misplaced shame. In my experience, hidden by boring beige people on a power trip. (Did I just say that? Whoops, I forgot to mention I am not one of those people who thinks that I should be entirely nice about people consciously still stigmatising meaningful mental health discussions in 2021).
Sweeping the past under the carpet just means we all trip on the lumps we can’t see and get bloody noses when some politician decides to bring back an old destructive social policy with a new name. In the cult of personality that has become Australian politics, a catchy slogan on repackaged policy disaster is a valuable thing.
One of the things I would like to do with this project, is have a look at the neuroscience of laughter. What part of the brain does it come from? Well…the limbic system, our survival centre, our emotional centre, is primary to laughter.
I’ve been thinking about my Dad a lot lately and his dark sense of humour and how he engaged humour to soften the blow of difficult times as the best medicine. Interesting for a man born on the 1st of April 1923 and who resented that date for the rest of his life. CW: low level discussions of end of life conversations.
Exploring how I first came across my ancestor John Brady’s death in 1888 and his erasure from history. Was this mental health stigma in action? Do we as a culture just erase uncomfortable mental health history?
The Deadline is video, podcast and blog project, taking you on a darkly humorous boutique distillery tour that crosses representations like “Who do you think you are?”, “Time Team”, “Drunk History” with “What we do in the Shadows”.