"Girl Over the Edge, an arresting memoir"
To be published by impact press, paddington, Sydney
For release in MAY 2018
This is my story based on my life experience of mental illness in 2012-2017. This Memoir is written in the first person through an adult lens. The memoir is honest, raw and confronting and treads into territory not yet trodden in memoir writing. Prepare to be stripped bare, as I was, as I lived it and then wrote about my experiences of mental illness. I commend you for reading my memoir. Regards, Kim Hodges
“If someone had of warned me what depression is capable of, I would never have believed them."
In the world could have prepared me for
Statement by Kim Hodges
Review from Professor Gordon Parker, Black Dog Institute, Sydney
“The black dog of depression corrodes identity, compromises the capacity to see colours in life, limits the capacity to love and to work, and takes the sufferer into a wasteland without hope. In her raw and personal account Kim Hodges details how her mood disorder stripped her bare and articulates what has kept her going. The reader will be struck by her honesty and authenticity.”
Review from Julie Smith, Boambee
"Kim's memoir of her sliding journey into the realisation she has bipolar disorder is a book that will stay in my mind for many reasons. Her achingly raw account of the illnesses effect on her psyche, her family and life is at times funny, heartbreakingly sad and also optimistic. She has an amazing way of telling a story with her observations honed to the finest detail. The memoir highlights how the disorder totally takes over her life through the way it affects Kim's feelings, moods, thoughts and the way she views her world at the times she is most vulnerable.Thank you Kim for allowing us into your very personal world and thus enabling all of us to gain a greater insight into someone suffering with your illness."
Note from the Author (extract from book)
This book is dedicated to you, the reader, for seeking a greater understanding of mental illness. I have suffered significantly due to the severity of my illness over the past five years. In this book I lay no claims to being an expert, professional, clinician, practitioner or educator in the field of mental health. I have lived experiences of mental illness and an ability to put words into sentences.
The content of my memoir is derived from: six lengthy hospital admissions at a clinic within a private hospital; Emergency Department presentations at a public hospital; engaging with health professionals; my informal research and own memories. Memoirs are subjective and may amplify and contract over time, dependent on the person and experience. Therefore family members, friends and health professionals’ memories of these events will vary slightly or significantly. My medical files were not released for my perusal as I had enough material to compose this memoir.
Whilst juggling the balls of life I was debilitated by mental illness to the point that I could not function. This memoir captures: the denial, stigma and shame I have in my own mind about mental illness; the debilitating physical and mental agony of the illness; engagements with health professionals, and facing my own mortality. Sufferers from mental illness deserve excellent care regardless of the public versus private health debate, social status, income, gender, age, ethnicity, addictions or any other reasons. Mental illness was not in my life plan and I was unable to forecast or prevent it, nor do I deserve it. Mental illness does not discriminate. Therefore health professionals, family members, the media and everyone else should not discriminate against sufferers. No one deserves to endure what is written in my memoir.
Only in retrospect can I gauge how unwell I am during an episode of severe depression as during episodes my irrational mind replaces my rational mind without warning or consent. My irrational mind coerces me to behave and think in irrational ways. This is the illness, not the real me. But ultimately I am responsible for my own behaviour whilst the illness has captured me.
I hope whilst you read my memoir it strips you bare just as mental illness has stripped me bare. Nurture your mind.
Writtten by Kim Hodges