PROUD

What have you done today to make you PROUD? “

Have you ever woke up and thought you were nothing special or important to people? Guess what I wake up like this most days and then I look back at what is reality. I am important I am special I am needed on this planet and will find the place that feels safe.

I have always looked at myself being on the top shelf not really wanted around by people as I have mentioned I have been forgotten about or used so the shelf is where I have always been left behind by people. As I became the safety blanket and yet who is my safety blanket I don’t have one anymore as the safety blanket and net was yanked from under me a few weeks ago in a situation that wasn’t ideal and I am not going to go into detail but it nearly brought me to the darkest place I have been. I know this blog is called “Proud” and this isn’t something I am to turn to the darkness, I am proud I didn’t let it consume me fully.

Right now I am missing someone and part of me feels I will never have this person back in my life as we haven’t spoken for a month, and I have to say goodbye to feeling close to this person as life is never going to return back to what I had before.

No, words or hopes or prays will bring back what I had or who I was, and being honest part of me doesn’t want the person I was to come back. I wasn’t me and I wasn’t true or proud of those days I hit rock bottom. Rock bottom is a dark and horrible place as you never know where or when the chance you will no longer be at the bottom of the spiral instead on your way back up the ladder and recovering even partially. It just happens.

I am currently working on myself at the minute I was only going to take 3 weeks off work but it turns out I have been off since the 28th August and right now I don’t know when I will be going back to work and I need to go back as it’s a sign of recovery. A fear is walking into people I really would prefer never to see again as I don’t feel I can cope with them at the minute, I don’t directly work with them instead they work in the same building and I have previously mentioned them in the “Trust Blog”.

For me today is a big day as not only did I have my medication review and also faced a fear and gone into the office knowing I could walk into two people. But a month today marks when I nearly fell into the darkness. When I was having my medication review it was literally to the minute of when it could happened. What could have been would have been total darkness and impossible to recover from for myself as knowing my luck it wouldn’t have been the ending.

So I called this blog “Proud” because I look back at the past what has happened and how life have changed. Where I am learning daily about who I am what I want do and who I want to spend time with. Over the month I have had some rumours said about me and I know who has said them and I have to laugh as I chose to step away from social media to protect me, I am proud of the fact I have taken a step away from the danger and the risk. This week talking to my occupational health and he was talking about spiritual mindfulness. And he explained how if we forget about evolution of ourselves, instead look at the spirit or the soul and look at my age.  We are on a train and it’s going until the final day comes and at that point we just leave the train while the rest of the train carries on this journey. My life is ongoing for many year to come.  My Pride has always been a big factor in who I am and how I won’t lose my pride. I take pride in my work, my life, my family and every step of the path I take.

The blog is something I am really proud of as it has given me a chance to open up and given me an opportunity to start clearing my head and challenging the illness. The reason why there has been no blog for over a week is because I couldn’t figure out how to start this blog or even what I wanted it to contain.

I am ONE I am Proud and I will be free of depress;on

Proud Music

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VOICE

“You are not a burden. You HAVE a burden which by definition is too heavy to carry on your own”

For the past few weeks I have been feeling like the lost soul and as if I am falling apart and why did I fall so low and how dark the world become. I have driven nearly 500 miles if not more over the past few weeks and I never looked at how much fight I have in me until today. Driving home from York and listening to the radio and hearing Fight Song by Rachel Platten.

Life is a fight and instead of listening to the inner demon voices its time I start listening to my own voice. As my voice has been lost and my demons have taken control and I have never really thought I was worth much as I am alone and awkward and depression has taken full control with the behaviour and mood removing the fight to be strong and be me.

On Monday when I put up the “Fear Blog” I was messaging Kevin and how I don’t like people talking about me or the fact I haven’t heard from someone important in nearly 4 weeks, how I miss the conversation but my heart & brain are slowly coming around to the fact some people need to leave to hear their own voice and find that piece of them they may have lost or may not have seen.

In a few weeks it is bearscots fest in Edinburgh and this year’s one would have been my fourth event and my 3rd in a relationship, but also the dates of this year’s event would have been our anniversary. Most people know I made the decision to cut off my ex and no longer have contact with him for the many reasons I have already wrote about on here.  I have felt quit low about the fact I couldn’t keep up a friendship with my ex but as I hear more and more rumours about us. It was definitely best to cut out the negative part of my life and start to think about what is important……ME!

People have read this and the other blogs and I appreciate the time it takes to firstly pick up the messages but then take time to read through the blogs which could have spelling and grammar errors in the pieces but I’m not a professional writer instead I am just trying to make today better for me and others going through something similar to my situation. I only want to bring the fight back and stop the stigma attached to Mental Health.

The wreckage I created over the past months and years, I can’t go back and change what has happened and have to accept that it has and start to move beyond the regrets as all I am doing is beating myself up more and more and not looking back at the highlights of the past year in Manchester and I have a lot of them. I have been to my first ever concert to see Take That, I have seen 2 amazing theatre shows in London and one in Manchester. Too getting my first home with my own space. I have also got my first job outside of retail, my work being recognised and how it has changed some ways we work. I escaped a soul destroying relationship and a family of hate. I have been shortlisted for 2 big awards within my first year at work. I have met some amazing people and learnt a lot and now I need to put what I have learnt into practice. And I have had some lovely memories with a variety of people.

With my voice being lost I never get to say how I truly feel and what I really want to say to people and it’s time to say, but also accept where my home is as I have many from my family to my friends. The darkness can only get me if I don’t look for the light that is life.

It’s time to take the fight to depression and make today and every day what I want it to be as no one else can make it for me. Not just to fight but to BELIEVE and make the most of today and I only have one life.

I am a fighter, Believer and I am never going to quit!

I am ONE & a SURVIV( ; )R

FEAR

Have you ever feared a stranger or the story wasn’t right and you didn’t know how to change or stop the FEAR from taking over? From the bible I found this quote that sums up fear to me over the years and made me think of the past few weeks.

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. I will FEAR no EVIL, for you are with me, your rod and your staff, they comfort me”
Bible- Psalm 23:4

Three weeks have passed since I considered the darkness and over the three week’s I have had to admit a lot of my demons and try to take control of the fear I have from them. Admitting the fear is a big stage in accepting and taking control of the fear. As surely if you fear it who has won the battle me or the fear?

For three weeks I have admitted I have a problem, admitted the person I love, admitted life has finally got too much on my own and now I need to let people in. But I have also found some positives, I started this blog and from day one of the blog promised to be honest about my recovery and my past. I have spent time away from home, from being alone and got to know my friends more. I have challenged the fear of three weeks ago being in a room with people and not sure of what is possible going to happen and stayed calm and just went with the flow avoiding difficult conversation. Taking a break to find a bit of me as well as right now I know I am nowhere near ready to be me fully or go back to work as it’s a lot to handle especially with where I work and what is expected of me and who works in the same building. I have spoken with work and they are ok with me being off as they know how severe this last bout of depression has been.

A fear I have always had is being alone but I have always been aware I am alone and from pushing people away and keeping what is happening to myself I have made myself even more alone. People have offered to be there to talk to but it’s a case of do I feel I can let them into my life and tell them the spiral of madness I have going on and making it more difficult to tell and some the people I have gone to in the past suddenly lose the ability to talk as it’s not about them or they might not able to discuss or support the situation. Which is more understandable but when they offer support, they could admit they don’t know what to say and the subject could move on but they hide behind ignorance and change the subject about them. As I have previously said I have gone to people asking for help and no one really being there in the past as to me I haven’t been important, I have been left forgotten about and seen as the image I portray as being strong enough and positive enough to recover from anything. In some cases I do come back fighting stronger than I have been but right now the strength it takes to be me is a lot. When I have felt low in the past I have managed to stay in bed all day and night and jut not move as my body hibernates as I hurt too much. Fearing this is what my life is going to be. As it could all end at any time as no one knows when the story is going to be over?

The quote I found wasn’t because I considered the darkness instead as I walk through this world and story that is my life I will fear nothing. With my friends and most importantly my family there to support and comfort me through the hard and good times of my story. No one will know the full story of my life and nor should anyone really know the full realms of it as that’s my story.

Fearing the story was nearly over was wrong of me to consider as I am only up to chapter 29 I have many more chapters to come. With a lot more hope for the future than I had yesterday. I won’t pretend my life is perfect or amazing as it’s not and if it was perfect I would be too scared to live it as it could be taken away in a second. A dream I have had for quite a few years has been finding Mr right settling down owning a house and more recently getting married and possible having our own children. But I would prefer to adopt than go through the difficulties of surrogacy but this may change on Mr Right. Part of my dream has had to change over the years through loss of family members and also some friends moving away from the path I have. For years I have been against marriage not because of the issues with getting equality within the United Kingdom. But it was actually do I need a piece of paper to say I love this person and the cost which I could spend that money on a nice holiday or part of our home or car. Also if it goes wrong it’s complicated and costly and to be fair for both Mr Right and I being able to leave the relationship easily.

Some of my closest friends were once strangers and some of them I now consider part of my family. With some other strangers who are very much firm friends, whilst some friends have now become strangers.

“Strangers are just friends you haven’t met yet. “

As I start my new week and begin to look towards a future I have to admit there is a bit more hope that I have had for a few weeks now. Tomorrow is a new day and life is going to be ok.

I am ONE and I am a SURVIV(;)R

Strong

“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles DEVELOP your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender. That is STRENGTH

One year on since I left London, the career I knew and the home I knew like the back of hand, along with the emotional baggage I had in London from my father and my past relationship. Last year I finished working in retail on the 11th September and was working within retail a so called small chain of children’s wear and well my final week was horrible, for 2 ½ days I worked on my own and generated more money than the team did the previous week. The customers were lovely and were wishing me well and brought some cards and gifts which was lovely as I have seen their families grow and I had helped them with the hard times of coming into a shop with children and making that 20 mins a bit easier. I also had to help parents with the hard times when it wasn’t to be. On the last day ½ my team couldn’t actually be bothered with me leaving or try to make it easier for me as I have been working there for 3 years and had the rollercoaster of losing my father while I was working there and everyone predicted I wouldn’t come back as its really difficult going back to a job and hearing the words “dad or daddy” when you have just lost yours. I also helped recover a store that needed server help. My team instead decided to be rude to customers or me even when I was being supportive as they were having a lot on as they had no new manager coming in for 8 weeks. My last day my assistant manager who was very outspoken about me being a manager wanted my job but was turned down as she demanded too much from the powers that be.  Being told a member of staff was going to put in a complaint because I wasn’t being supportive while she was dealing with a diagnosis of epilepsy even though I was the one who agreed to give her a gentle return back and I would be the one to work on my own with her so there was sufficient cover for the team as well in case she had a seizure. But I left on my last day hearing from my manager and my old manager who I still talk to and love her to bits.

Over the following days I packed up my life into my car and got ready for my new life in the north. I had my last family meal on the 12th which was emotional as it was last meal I had with my aunt and cousin. But also it became more real I was leaving. On the 13th I moved and drove the 200 miles north to live with friends. And a few days later begin my new job which I have now been at for a year. As I have said in previous blogs I split from my boyfriend and also met someone who made me smile without having to force it.

When I went on the break from my ex and I met that other person I slowly started to go through the realm of doubt and if I was right in my decision should I be on the break. With Christmas coming up it was even more doubt and more fear I would be Single and why would someone want me as my actual boyfriend didn’t want me.  Well I visited the person I was getting closer too and he had friends over. Who in turn have become my own friends who I am close to but not in the same way. I spent a night feeling awkward and nervous about being out and alone and my first real time out since I went on a break.  Meeting those 2 people I have helped me gain control of some kind. They have been part of my strength and part of my development to get better. When I had my breakdown in February they didn’t cast any shadows of disappointment which I know they had they just never said it. They provided support and encouragement to help me recover and make me feel safe. They are also the reason I am still here today. As through the darkness they saved me from the voices and they helped with turning the flash light on that little ray of light coming in through the darkness.

I have recently helped them to move, and when I was really ill with tonsillitis they have supported and looked after me. Let me stay with them for longer than what was to be expected. Around the same time the person I got close to had his own crisis with a loss within their family and I was there to help them at the same time I was starting to grow away from him and into my own life, but it wasn’t to be at the time as we needed each other. We were friends before all the mayhem begun and always put that a priority. As I value friendship beyond anything else as it means we have a connection and can get on and I like the contact and time we spend together.

With the recent decision to take medication I have also had to make the decision to escape my hometown for a short period to be around people and they have welcomed me into their home. We haven’t spoken really about the situation instead just normal day to day life, including going to my first classical concert which I loved and it brought back the days of playing music the electricity of the notes the audience and the atmosphere even though it was freezing cold. I have spent time getting to know people I probably would have only ever saw at a big event like bearscots or bear bash or something happening in Manchester, instead I have got to spend time with 4 lovely people one of them I am very close to and is a support and is there when I need him.

I have other friends who are at the end of a phone who I message regularly and talk to its just hard finally admitting I am alone and need to let people into my life and ask for help as I have grown used to being on my own with all the decisions and when people ask me what I fancy doing I always say I don’t mind as I really don’t know what to do as it’s not what everyone else would want to do. Right now my friends are my strength even the friends I miss dearly and wish they would come back but the time isn’t right for them to be here.

To be stronger than yesterday you have to be gain control of the present. Forget the past and begin to leave it all behind and begin to look for the future.  The past is always going to be a constant reminder of my battle wounds and how they will have happened but I need to leave those wounds back in the past and become the man I want to be as the man I have been before the past year isn’t me, the man I was, has to take control of the now and make it what I want it to be.

I am ONE, my friends you are my rock and I cannot thank you enough for being there for me.

Broken

” I’m gonna SMILE like nothing’s wrong, PRETEND like everything’s all right, ACT like its all perfect, Even though inside it really HURTS…”

As the quote says, I hide behind the smile, pretending to be ok and never letting people know what is going on inside. As to be let into the madness that is my head it is beyond mayhem. Since accepting I have depression and a majority of the triggers and also causes are coming out and accepting my past is a big part of recovery.

For my life I have always accepted being the forgotten person, friends and some family leave me behind as they think I am ok. But the hurt and fractures to the human brain and emotional torture can sometimes become too great even when you really know why you’re not included.

Over the years I have got use to pretending I am ok as it’s always seemed the right thing to do, keeping quiet and never saying anything as it means I become the centre of attention and for me I can’t think of anything worse than being the centre of attention. As it means I have to talk about me and admit there is further problem and need to talk to people about it. I look at being far from the centre and as some people prefer keeping me on the outside of the circle and just leaving me there. It’s a place I have got comfortable over the years and know partly self-inflicted as I don’t push to become more involved. But why should everything be a fight just to get that attention, or even be the centre of someone’s world.

When I was with my ex it was my first real relationship and it was all new and being important to someone. To the world we were a lovely couple and we were close but behind closed doors we were very far from close. As most know it was a long distant relationship with me being in London and him in Glasgow and well I did all the traveling and had to deal with a lot from his past including namely his ex who is also his best friend. I know we all have a past and I encouraged meeting and spending time with him to get to know who he was as he was an important person to my ex. But the ex-decided to take me as a threat and also my ex was too scared I would make him choose. For me I have never and will never make someone to pick between me and another as it wouldn’t be my place to make that person to choose. Also I am use to the other person being picked over me. With the ex he was constantly around towards the end and showed me no respect and treated me as if he was still in a relationship with my ex. He even at one point told me that I will never know my ex. Well I will never know him as well as he knew him as myself and him were only together for 2.5 years. They were together nearly 14 years and he had never fully moved on. A majority of the time I was use to visiting and having to deal with the usual and instead of going out and enjoying being in a relationship it was hidden away, and rarely going out with people on a night out. My last big event in Scotland was damaged beyond repair from a set of arguments including being accused of telling someone to go away. To the sudden appearance of his ex who seemed determined to have an argument which ended up being with his ex and the guy he was trying it on with having an argument with him also. So for me that was a sign of the end as instead of trying to protect me or letting me help him with this idiot it was always never right or never good enough so even though I cared about a man who was meant to care for me I just never seemed to get the same back. When I told him I was suffering from depression and he was a factor of it, he was upset but he never did anything to help it with my recovery. Before Christmas I decided we needed to go on a break as while everyone else was starting a relationship and it was blooming mine wasn’t mine was on the brink of exploding all over the place.

In that month I laughed I smiled I made connections with people. I also suffered and hurt which I ignored the pain and put on this enjoyment of actually being centre of a few people attention. One person in particular I have grown closer too, we would spend time together all the time, and we would just have a good time and enjoy each other company. We spent part of Christmas & New Year’s together and it felt right and as if how it should have been. We never entered a full relationship but it just became that way just never a label. Four days into the New Year I decided if it wasn’t changing with my ex we had to end it and begin again. Which we agreed was right as when I look back I never got a birthday or Christmas present from my ex. But the person I was getting closer to, did get me a Christmas and birthday present. He treated me the way I never had and made me realise this is what it should have been within my past relationship. The emotional connection was different it awoken a piece of me I never knew about. I started to fall in love, which was never the plan for me I was no longer the guy who was forgotten about. I was important to someone for change and smiled and I wasn’t pretending anymore instead I was being honest, I was happy. But then I got to close and it was just me feeling that way. I let my emotions get the better of me and he changed the plans. The beginning of the end for me in a way and an awakening of the depression. We fell apart and we stopped what we had. It took a while to regain what I lost and admit I was broken which I did when I was approaching the lowest point the darkest time I had to seek counselling and I did this. Which didn’t really help as I would just talk and never really focus on the issue of falling in love but instead my father’s accident. That never really focused on the breakdown of my mental health it was a factor of course.

Today I lookback and with recent events which nearly destroyed me and made me considered the darkness as the possible best route out of suffering this pain and being free to never feel this way again. But I am still here I never did it and was saved by people, who helped me with the stopping me from doing anything with the darkness.

I have been blogging for over a week and most of my blogs have been positive but right now I am struggling for the positive. The recent event brought me and the person I grew closest too to a cross roads where our friendship is suffering as choices were made and my anxiety grew too much. Around an individual who to some means no harm but to me he is a manipulator and says he had no interest in the person I liked but as soon as he found out I had been with this person he was all over him.

Life for me is difficult and I feel people are there but right now the shadows and the cloud and fog is around me as it takes control of my life and I have to turn on the fog lights to get through the fog. As I still feel unworthy talking to people about what is going on as it’s a lot to take in and also for me to admit there is more than just the parts I tell people. It’s also letting go of the past that is really hard to do as I have a past that is filled with sadness. Currently I feel very much broken and the pain i have inside me and the more I feel like part of me is beyond repair and not just my heart but also my brain.

I am ONE that will ONE day be free from darkness.

Time

When I started this blog I considered the positives and the negatives of blogging and telling the world my problems. Also taking into consideration others might be going through the same or already working on their recovery.

For me I wanted to do a blog for a while and never had a reason to do it until now.  With the blog it was something about ending the stigma attached to mental health issues. Not just with people but also my own view that I was afraid to talk about my mental health or approach the issue until it was very deeply taking control of my life.

Depression is something that takes away people’s identity where something that would be relatively small and easy to manage becomes increasingly bigger and harder to respond to. The simple application of communication and style can be affected if they are an easy going person who is confident and able to approach a subject of different multitudes of issues. For some reason depression starts off as a small ball literally as small as a penny over a period of time the penny has grown to the size of a football with the continued growth and fear and doubt taking over more and more of the persons being.

Over the past year I have started off with this small ball of doubt and fear taking over. This time last year I was packing up my life in London and about to move and begin again, this was an opportunity for me to become more of the person I wanted to become. Instead of just taking in the moments and opportunities I have been given not just with work but also with some really nice people and enjoying the city I chose to call my home.

Since the move I have made friends with some amazing people, I have also met some people I prefer to never met, but those people have come into my life and looking back at the events and at those points they are more of an education that these people are there to remind you of the good happy times you have with some amazing people.

I look back at my past and remember how much I missed out on with friends growing up. I was forgotten about to a certain degree as I have either been the odd number in the group or the person who isn’t really thought of.  With that it has hardened me and made me a bit more stand offish with people as a way to protect myself. It took me 4 months to let people into my world. A resistance and question mark has been hovering over people I meet for how long it will be until someone gets hurt either me or them.  As it happens and to me it feels as if it’s constantly going to happen and with life it could but for me doubt it a big factor.

People give me some lovely compliments from being really nice guy, funny, cheeky, loving, kind, resilient & caring. For me I don’t look at those I have looked at my negatives and also question why people are friends with me as I can’t see why and how we can relate. I know I can be difficult and very unengaged at times as I lack the confidence other have in new situations and can be very shy and quiet. When I did my first bearscots I was sort of left to my own devices and had to get the confidence to get out there and talk to people which I did and in turn met my ex. I had to get the strength to converse talk to people engage with them and partly because I never thought I would ever see the people again as I was ready to say I done bearscots and now I don’t need to go back. Well I did 2 more events volunteered at one of the events and was seen as very confident apparently even with a difficult situations appearing. My last one I wasn’t the same person I knew my relationship was breaking down, my career had just changed I had changed. I let someone take control of my confidence and drain it out of me. Don’t get me wrong bearscots is an amazing event and I would always recommend it to anyone thinking about going. At the last event I met my best friend who I have been visiting while I have been off.

But the time I have been away or the years I have chosen to forget and block out the darkest parts of my past are the hardest to leave behind. I have been told countless times time is a great healer but when your living with depression it isn’t it’s a ticking time bomb and you never know when the seeds or the shadows of doubt will be planted. I have always wanted just to be happy, not with other people just to be happy as me. I accepted years ago before my ex that I would leave this world alone as it’s hard to meet someone who understands me but also accepts me and I also let into my world who is part of my life. As every time I have let people in they hurt me or use my kindness as a sign of weakness and try to destroy me and this is a constant.

Time isn’t a great healer with depression it is a prison you wait and wait and hope that today will be the day you find the key to escape the prison doors, but it never is. When you have let someone in and they have helped put you inside the prison just because that’s there association the prison is no longer run by depression it is also run by the enforcer the person who hurt you and has planted the seeds.

I started this blog and have been very positive that I will change my life and will get myself back to who I want to be. But at present and today I don’t know if I can find that person I want to be. As the person I want to be is yet to be found.

Those I call friends know how much they mean to me as some people I don’t speak to much at all but they know how important they are to me. I don’t share my problems with people because I don’t want people to be focusing on me when they have so much going on in their own lives. I have always had to just get on with it being me. Rarely do I go ask for a helping hand as someone I care about a lot said, “you have been so strong for too long…”and I have been I haven’t let people in as I believed I could fix the world and me without ever focusing on me.

“Accept today as the low point as tomorrow has yet to be decided.”

By me.

I am ONE.

Mirror

Have you ever looked in the mirror and just can’t see what others can see?

Within society we have a number of labels and categories everyone fall’s into. A so called category, but who decides.

I have looked into the mirror and tried to see who is looking back at me. People tell me who I am and what you I mean to them. But then people can tell you but do you believe them?

I am 29 years old. I have had my own battles including the one I am on at the moment. Recently I have been told people wish I wasn’t alive, to not being a nice person and also questioned if I fall into the category. I have previously wrote something about labels so I won’t got down the theory or the social experiments that have been conducted in the past.

Earlier this year I experience my crisis point and talking to some wise people they suggested on a wall writing all the positives about myself. I could get some help from friends but I had to think of the majority of positives. It made it onto Facebook as well. The Wall of positivity as it was known as. I looked at the qualities that I hold within and made me look deep at who I really am. Sometimes or most the time I forget who I really am.

A Mirror has the ability to show you what you want to see but hide the truth within itself. But it could also looking at a dream reliving your day over and over again. This could be a moment wishing it was over and it just fogs up your views of reality.

In my last blog I wrote about a man who has manipulated and treated me like dirt and I have finally had enough, but it got me thinking what people present to someone, they are presenting themselves to the mirror that is you. Where they see what you want them to see. If you are consciously trying to hide parts. But they still will see it just not as obvious. For my current job I was moving from Retail as a Store Manager to working within the charity sector.  This interview I was really big for me as I just quit my old job a few days before and after being told constantly I was an exceptional Assistant Manager and visual merchandiser and that was my glass ceiling to them. Instead of motivating and encouraging me to become stronger as a store manager. And I admit I had made my faults and I could have done things differently but I was still good as a store manager, as I would fix problem stores, namely the store I was seconded over to for a period. Well the interview went well as I got the job but I found out that my shirt was untucked at the back, and one of the managers saying I looked so nervous.

For me I have always and probably will always struggle what people see in me that makes me stand out and for them to want to be friends with me. But it’s time to not question everything and just look into the mirror and see who I want to be and just breath and be me. Life is set to try and test our beings and see if we can accept the reason why we are friends. I have some wonderful friends and they make every day easier and encourage me to grow not just in my recovery but as a friend.

Since I started this blog I have started to open up and talk to more people and also I have been visiting friends to get away from the past and to give myself a chance to just breathe. The people I choose to spend time with are amazing and how much I owe them will never be forgotten as life would be very dull without them. I might be missing ONE or TWO but when the time is ready we will see each other when the time is right.  With being signed off its difficult as I feel I am missing part of me and having to relax when there is so much going on at work at the minute. But I have had to finally stop as the pressure on me there is nothing compared to the pressure I am under by my own hand. So for the past week I have spent a few days in Manchester, helped friends move from one part of York to another part, then to Derby for the Darley Park 2015 Classical FM concert. To finally come home to my mums in Norfolk. I have in total 3 weeks off and I keep having the bad regretful feelings and thinking about the past but I am looking at the now and what I can do to protect me.

“If you’re on the wrong path, turn around”

Kinky boots by Cyndi Lauper.

A Mirror will always pick up elements of what we really don’t want to see even if it’s the past. For me it’s time to leave the mirror image accept who and what I am and forget the rest. As I am definitely here to stay and no man woman or outlaw will tell me otherwise. Those that treat me differently because I am kind, caring, respectful or have depression well really I won’t change who I am because I don’t fit the label you have written for me. I am still going to be me just a better version and those that want to treat me differently well that’s for them to answer to in their own mirror as others will see who you really are.

I am ONE and I will SURV;VOR. Cracks and all.

Trust

When you are dealing with depression you struggle with who you can trust and who you can’t. Sometimes the person you believe would be there isn’t actually there as they have multiple of factors to why they can’t or don’t want to be there. So the question is always going to be Do I trust you enough to share?

When you are dealing with depression you have to deal with a multitude of tasks that was once really easy but has become harder and the easiest task such as going to the shops could be too much for an individual. Some may face bigger battles that no one will ever know about in with a battle against the “darkness”. The “darkness” has the power to take control and make you believe what isn’t really true or there. You could be one of the strongest most positive person in the world and you could have a battle against the “dark”. Now those that know me or feel they know me wouldn’t believe I was the ONE of the fallen people who nearly followed the darkness.

On the outside I am seen as this positive and happy person but I have lived with depression for many years and learnt how to hide it and pretend that everything is ok. But really it isn’t. I have been around people and I haven’t been asked how I am for an hour. Three simple words of “How are you” shows a lot even if you aren’t interested or even bothered if I am well. You never know what you might find out about the person. It could be at that moment you get told how the darkness has taken over.

It’s quite interesting thinking back just to this year in 2015 I have met people a majority of them are nice and then I have met someone who is so self-centred I look back and remember how manipulative he is all I want to do is set some home truths here and now.

1, You manipulated me to a point you were the reason why my anxiety rises to a super high.

  1. You can control others for so long until I break and guess what I have broke so you have nothing you can do.
  2. When you start trying to manipulate my friends and someone I love I do the wisest thing I can do while I recover as you are a poisonous toad who don’t deserve the admiration of those closest to you. And that is steer well clear until you hurt them as you will, and I will be there for my friends while you will be alone.

Final point. Don’t boast about the past as you dilute the facts more and more, and never trust someone on the first meeting.

Now this person has no idea I am currently blogging but also I should mention this has been a long time coming where I have suffered abuse and disappointment also he is one of the people who never asks the 3 basics of communication and smiles at encouraging someone to leave the job. The basics are “HOW ARE YOU” I have an will always look out for my friends even when I am recovering I will still be there for them and the my first love or MR1 will always get my priority over trolls and people who forget what it’s like to be in emotional distress as you want my life you want my friends because I appear strong. For the individual they will know soon enough when I am ready and if people talk so what. I can’t change my opinions and neither will I.

Well today I am strong and every other day I will be stronger and take pride in myself at beating your mind games and pure venom that flows from you won’t touch me ever again. As what more can you do to me? Take my friends what again? Friends choose who they want in their lives I choose who I want in mine and you I don’t.

Words are big and they have an impact on people’s lives and how they can take a life without anyone knowing it. People can be horrible and encourage the darkness without even realising and luck and good will may not even save you from the darkness. As the words have sunk in and they have taken control of the person’s mind they aren’t good enough or they don’t belong well I am here today because of 4 people. Not MR1 but 4 people who saved me, Mr 1 knows about it and has given me a slap for nearly ending it. As apparently I mean something to people and I have a gift that has been slightly lost for a few months and as I look at it has just been delivered to my old home in London and it’s on its way back to me in Manchester. I will get myself back on my feet and MR1 will be back once I am back to an even playing field as right now I am on a different level to everyone else.

If you notice I don’t refer to what the darkness for the one reason I don’t feel it should be referred to as it is known as I didn’t let it take me. Also if it’s a referred to by its true name and form its being given respect. Right now I am in the different shades of grey not the light nor the darkness just floating between the levels of grey. I am not proud to go to the darkest part of life my life again as I have been to the pure darkness many times in the past 10 years and I am never going to say I won’t contemplate it as that’s a promise I can’t make. But I will try and speak to people before it gets too much and ask for help.

A life is a gift and a wonderful gift I have seen in my life how quick it could be taken away from people. Working within Childrens wear and having to have that difficult conversation with a parent who either didn’t go full term or did and it wasn’t the joy they wanted. That gift being taken away before they even get a chance to enjoy and instead have the misery. If you consider the darkness and the misery I have a few things to look at before you ever consider it ever again, who will you be leaving behind? I would be leaving behind my family some great friends. Why are you considering the darkness is right? If it’s because someone has told you or keeps riding your back because they are unhappy about something tell them where to go, do you think honestly that they will be sad if you’re gone. It’s a lot more fun and shows true courage to come back every single time. Are they really worth your time to give them that moment to really consider the darkness? I doubt it if they are pushing you towards the darkness what are their reasons? Is it because they are jealous or they are just lazy or inept to consider their own actions to could affect other people. Final point why are you bothered what they really think? Even if you love them they don’t get the right to push you towards the darkness. No matter how low you are no one gets that power. Remember this big factor you’re the ONE and the only person controlling your life. No one else can control or take your life.

Have you ever heard the phrase “Every Action has a Reaction!”  well here is my reaction to my action on Wednesday I went to seek medical help and got prescribed medication to help with my depression, Thursday I collected it, I also started this blog to document and raise awareness and took the #timetochangepledge to raise awareness and talk about my mental health and Friday I took my first tablet.   Saturday (todays  blog writing) I have had to rewrite my original blog post from friend or foe to TRUST as I don’t need to go into who I trust as they know, and also I was giving the foe too much time.

 “Strong people don’t put others down…they lift them up.”
by Michael P. Watson

Don’t let anyone tell you you’re not worth being here as I am here to tell you, you are. Every life has a meaning and its time I believe in my own life not just believe what I am told and thinking the easiest way out of this situation is the darkness. Instead getting up every single day and fighting against it as those who hate us have got a sad and pathetic life they are thinking about me you and you have taken up that person’s time.

For me I am moving on, learning, growing and I have 2 simple words for the frenemies……Good BYE.

So to everyone who reads this blog or is part of my life, “How are you?”

If you are contemplating the darkness, talk to the person you trust the most and they will help you or go to your local GP or A&E and ask for an emergency appointment at your GP. You can also contact Samaritans & MIND who have resources available. if you are under the age of 18 you can also speak to Childline.

I am ONE and we are all SURV;VORS.

One

When you were a child did you ever think who will you be when you are older? Most people will say I want to be a footballer or a astronaut or doctor. But have you ever considered that one day either you or someone you are close to family or friends could suffer from a mental health crisis.

So growing up I never looked and said I would be the ONE in four.  my dream was to be happy and I never knew what i wanted to do but knew I wanted to do something that helped people, so my natural path was going into retail and working with Children and becoming good at not selling but supporting parents with there children s development. Selling isn’t complicated as long as you know what you are selling and remember you are a customer not always the salesman. Then i moved onto working within the charity sector looking at addiction.

With the career change I also moved from my home town in London to Manchester, For a change of my future but also to continue enjoying my life. I also wanted to be closer to my then boyfriend who lives in Glasgow. Through being forgotten about and becoming more and more isolated through my now Ex boyfriend to looking at my past with the reminder I wasn’t important to people. This is from my Ex, to my father and his family to selected friends where I have become unwanted, isolated and very insecure. This  re awakened my past where i have seen and been involved in some of the most difficult situations from seeing my father having an accident to being forgotten about by him, To my ex putting his best friend and ex before me and allowing him to treat me as if I was nothing and show me no respect. to friends who just didn’t know what to say or how to approach any of the situations. I have had to sit through a dinner to try and celebrate my birthday a few months after it happening and my father passing i sat through a meal where pictures of there childhood with there dads swapping pictures was deemed appropriate.

Now I know the above makes it sound like i hold onto this hurt and heartache and just let it go as it wasn’t done out of malice instead it was just forgotten about how difficult it was for me. Some people will be aware my father had an accident and was left paralyzed from the neck down and was left in a wheelchair.He still could tell me off.

Well 2015 has brought misery and disappointment as I split from my ex 4 days into the new year my birthday being turned into everyone else by me. Finally accepting the emotions I had in my relationship wasn’t right and should have stopped the way it went sooner. Accepting I deserve better and to be someones priority.

Many years ago i had my first love brought that magic of being someone priority feeling special and important.. someone was going to help take care of me but also I could take care of them. I don’t think I will ever get over losing that love as he was an amazing first love and made life easier when it was extremely difficult and dark and he was there. That wasn’t the same to my next relationship. but it wasn’t to be a permanent love.

But this is day ONE and there is going to be many many more days to this recovery and I know today is the good day and no two days will be the same and they could feel like the world is about to explode at any point when I start this long path.

From doing this blog it will help someone who could be on this same path but is also afraid to take those first steps in admitting they could do with saying the words ” I need help”  For me it has taken years and months to admit I need help and if you aren’t the ONE in FOUR but you are the FOUR listen be there for your friend if they have come to you that means a lot. They have come to you as they trust you more than anyone else. They have to feel safe and trust in you. so listen and if your unsure google self-help and get the ONE to talk to their GP even for a general chat they can be referred onto counselling. Doctors don’t always put people onto medication unless they really need to and depending on the individual case.

If you need help how to help your friend or loved one, try MIND or Samaritans also there is time to change focusing on ending discrimination and stigma associated to mental health.I have made the pledge to blog and challenge the stigma attached to mental health. There is also the Project semicolon a charity  dedicated to presenting hope and love to those who are struggling with depression, suicide, addiction and self-injury. Project Semicolon exists to encourage, love and inspire.

Today I am not ready to share why I had to seek help but one day I will. But to a small group of people I owe you more than you will ever know in some cases and to my dear friends, John, Rob, Kev, Scott & Phil THANK YOU. my lost love as well I have to say Thank You as without you I wouldn’t know how happiness should feel.

Today and tomorrow I will always be the ONE in FOUR and I am a Surv;vor! 

I am ONE

Mental Health illness has always been the forgotten killer and silent destroyer of life. Where 1 in 4 adults will face a Mental Health Crisis this can be psychosis or depression to full blown schizophrenia. More alarming 1 in 5 children could suffer from a mental health crisis.

The hardest battle anyone will face when someone is battling depression or any illness is when they are ready to ask for help and if they want help. The stigma is still attached to any kind of illness not just mental health. The association to mental health is the stigma where you can be seen as a weaker person, or seen that the illness is in fact in “their own mind” when reality is it can come from many factors. Environmental & cultural.

Well whilst I type this and try to make sense of my own mind and my own issue I have to admit I am 1 in 4. I am the one who has and is battling a mental health illness who has had to accept the help and support from others but also admit I am not beating this disease alone and need additional support of medication and psychological support.  I have battled Depression since I was 20 years old. And had my battles and have fought and thought I had won at the time. But it was a subdued cloud. I won’t go into my past where today the images across the media of a child found drowned takes the nation.

I decided while I battle this disease I will blog and keep a memory of what is going on with the honest truth. Sharing the Good days the Bad days and the ugly part of depression including the side effects of being medicated. But I do need to stress this isn’t about drawing attention to me. This is about awareness and trying to help remove the stigma that people have said to me but also my own stigma that I have put on myself with the feeling of failure. With this blog I will admit here and now that this blog could go dark and it could become foggy before there is light and happy memories.

It has taken me 5 days to accept and admit this is a long battle and it won’t be easy it is going to be hard and difficult and I might not be me for a long long time. But reality is I haven’t been me for an extremely long time. Very few people know the true me and I won’t describe myself here as everyone has their own perspective of who or what I am. As right now I am on day 1.

To anyone who is going or joining this journey, a quote I have read and seen in many different way and formats.

Never Never Never GIVE UP
Winston Churchill

Thank you for following this blog and the support. If you are struggling and are unsure talk to someone talk to the closest person and talk. You arent weak for saying you need help, you are strong and will be even stronger.

#IamONE

Alex