Melissa Gole is a nurse who specializes in aged care and has an interest in practice development. She is also a mother, belly dancer and now author.

She grew up as the daughter of Brett and Cheryl Gole who both lived with mental illness – Brett was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at a young age and Cheryl with schizophrenia. Brett was a strong advocate for people living with a mental illness. He was a consumer representative. He helped with planning and design of a mental health unit. He educated people about living with a mental illness.

Melissa lost both parents to natural causes in 2017 and 2018. In the last few months together, she came to understand them and that they were people just like anybody that they could feel more, they could hurt more and they cared more. Melissa used her own experiences living with anxiety and depression to help write the experiences of Blue.

Melissa hopes to change stigma around mental illness and create a culture of dignity, support, compassion and understanding in the hope that people will know it’s a feeling and to be able to gain help. She would also like to pay respect to the current dogs, cats, horses and people who serve in the police force who aim to save lives and catch the baddies every day, acknowledge the sadness they feel when things don’t go so well and thank them for their service.