I was going to wait to get this post out, let it sink in a little bit more but I am just so excited that I couldn’t wait to share things with you! For those who have no idea what I am on about, I was in the audience for ABC’s Q&A when they came to my home town. One of my readers sent me through the link and when I saw that not only was it going to be in Rockhampton but as part of Mental As week, the topic was going to be about mental illness.When I first got the email to let me know I was going to be in the audience I was like a teenage girl, there may have been squealing involved. I quickly got to thinking about what question I would ask if given the opportunity. It quickly became apparent that one of the things I think is most important, especially during Mental As Week, was about the gap between crisis care and long term treatment.
I wasn’t sure how things would be run on the night, but it became apparent pretty quickly that those who were going to ask questions had already been contacted. I was a little bummed about it but at least I could relax for the show, knowing that I didn’t have to prepare to ask my question in front of the audience and cameras.
I was equal parts nervous and excited in the lead up to the day, but about 2 hours before we were due to leave, that balance tipped way into the nervous side. I felt like throwing up, I was snappy and I could see all of my classic anxiety symptoms raring their ugly head. I felt like I was about to be mental as, and not in a good way. I skipped dinner, for fear that I would lose it.
In all, I think I went through about 10 outfit changes, something that I very rarely do anymore. Once I decide on an outfit then I am fine, something that I usually decide on a few days before a major event. I was stressed and flustered. I was second guessing even going at all, of course at this stage I also didn’t know that questioners were contacted in advance so I had that looming over me as well. I wanted my question answered..I just didn’t want to ask it. However I knew that it was important as a mental health blogger to take things like Mental As with two hands when you are given the opportunity.
By the time I actually got to the theatre my hands were shaking. I held on to my handbag in the hopes that it wouldn’t show as much. Thankfully once I sat down I felt so much better. I was actually a little daring and sat 8 rows from the front.
As for the show, it was just wow. I loved how it all came together so smoothly, especially with it being live. There was a great range of questions, with resilience seeming to be a common theme throughout a lot of the answers. As it turned out, the question I wanted to ask was asked by another woman so I was happy with that.
Surprisingly Bob Katter did say a few things that I really resonated with..right up until the homosexual question. Watching him be owned by Josh Thomas was by far the highlight of the night. It was also great to hear from people who are in the trenches with the mentally ill, and what they want to see happen in the future. I will go deeper into those things in a future post though because there really was a lot of food for thought. Actually everything in the line up for Mental As will really shine a light on the realities of living with a mental illness.
I really enjoyed being able to be a part of Mental As and Q&A and I was so lucky to be given the chance. One thing that I will say about the whole thing is that while a lot of what the panel was saying was really great, it once again falls back to the government. Until the government steps up to the plate then the things covered in Mental As week, will continue. The stigma might reduce, but the treatment won’t get any better.
You can check out the Mental As line up here and you can also check out the Q&A episode here.
Linking up with Jess for IBOT.
Glad your question got asked – and good for you for sticking with your plan regardless (feel the fear and do it anyway sitch)
I’m so glad you got to be a part of the audience and didn’t have to worry once you got there about asking your question. I get anxious in situations like that too. Heck, it’s the first day of school after school holidays and just THAT has my stomach in knots. Also glad someone asked your question, but you are right, it comes down to government. I don’t know why it is so hard for them to see mental illness as a priority. x Aroha (for #teamIBOT today)
Wonderful to see you enjoyed it! I do love Josh, glad he stood up to Katter!
I would have loved to hear your question, would deffo have watched that. Sometimes Bob Katter does make surprising sense, but then he always reverts back to type. Glad you got to attend anyway 🙂
I’d love to be in the audience for Q & A. It’s such an interesting and important show. I missed this episode but I might try and catch up on it. I’m glad you enjoyed it, eventually 🙂
Well done Tegan! I can just imagine how angst ridden it would have been but you did it! I’ll have a look on iView to hear what it was all about. V.
Congrats on going. Sounds amazing. I was like you – Bob Katter surprised me to begin with, then he made a ‘joke’ about women being the cause of men’s mental problems (WARNING BELL), then when he refused to even LOOK at Josh when Josh was talking about the LGBTI community in QLD he undid anything good he’d said up to that point. There’s an app called Grindr, I’ll put it on your phone! HAHA!
Sounds like a stimulating session (and I’ll have to watch the link as I missed the episode). It would have been great to feel part of a buzz about doing positive things to improve mental health and raise awareness. I look forward to your insights in the following post.
I can totally relate to the anxiety you felt just before leaving. I would’ve been exactly the same, especially if I thought I might have to ask a question live! I’m glad you went though and that someone else asked your question. I would’ve loved to be there to see Katter get owned by Josh Thomas! *off the watch video*
to watch video* clearly I need more caffeine today.
I missed it last night (in fact I miss it most monday’s as I’m usually getting ready for IBOT), but I would love to see this one. I’ll check it out on iview.
Oh how perfectly awesome! I love that show! So happy you got to go along. I always wondered how people made their way into that audience – so there you go xx
It was a great show Tegan. I would love to be part of Q &A. Josh was brilliant. Bob Katter is as mad as a cut snake!
I had been really looking forward to reading your experiences on Q&A Tegan. Such a great experience! I absolutely love Josh Thomas, and his ability to speak so candidly about mental health. You are all doing such great things for the cause.
I can just imagine how excited you were when you found out about the show and that is was to be about mental illness. It sounds like it was an amazing experience even if you didn’t get to ask your question.
I can just imagine your excitement and I’m so stoked you went and were up the front and felt empowered, what a great experience! Josh Thomas is one of my all-time favs. Keep on keeping it real girl x
Sounds like a great episode – was sorry I missed it. Thanks for sharing the links.
You so deserved to be there Tegan ! You do so much with your blog it does not matter that you didn’t get to ask your question. I admire you and your passion, your determination to keep writing about the hard stuff. So glad you pushed through the anxiety. x
I’m so glad you didn’t let nerves get the better of you and got to enjoy the night! I’ve often wondered how they managed the questions in the audience, given that almost everyone would want to ask something – and they have to negotiate the tweets and skype questions as well. Anyway, good that your question was asked by someone else. I hope the answer was satisfactory!
I would love to go and see Q&A (and I would be nervous too!). Good on you for being prepared to stick it to them! I’m glad you had fun.
I totally forgot to watch it but I plan to have a squiz online tomorrow night once the girls are in bed. So glad you had a good time, can’t wait to hear more of your thoughts on it.
So wonderful you were a part of this. I am off to check it out.
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