Monday, 8 May 2017

Nicki Kinickie, Headcase Blog, Mental Health Awareness, Surviving to Thriving, lbloggers,

I took a sip of my sugary, piping hot tea, any healthy eating was out of the window and my box of green tea remained in the cupboard unopened. Looking after myself and treating my body and mind with any respect or care was certainly not at the forefront of my mind. It was the last thing I was interested in.

I was in one of lowest points of depression and clueless as to how to deal with it and get myself back on track. All I could think was 'Why?' 'Why do I have to feel this way? Why do I find simple every day tasks that others do without a second thought so very hard?' 'Why do I hate what I see in the mirror?' 'Why? Why? Why?'

It seems self indulgent to someone who has never suffered from any kind of mental illness, I guess depression IS self indulgent in some respects but without being about seeking attention, I guess it comes from always being in your head. The problem with it is your mind is always switched on, punching out thoughts at a thousand miles an hour, usually insecure, irrational thoughts which results in us - those who suffer the illness - questioning and over analysing every part of our lives and our very being.

At it's very worst and at your very lowest, the illness feels like torture. You wonder why your own mind wants to punish you in this way and what you have done to deserve it. Why can't you just 'be'? Why can't you switch those thoughts off? Or just be happy and content?

The whole reason I am writing this raw, honest - and frankly depressing post - is because I know and understand what it feels like to feel exceptionally low and utterly useless. I know that feeling of not wanting to carry on, I have had those thoughts of how easy would be for everyone if I wasn't here and how much easier life would be for my husband and daughter not having to put up with a 'headcase' like me. It would mean silence for me too finally, silence from that awful white noise in my head that never shuts off or leaves me alone.


The thing is though, I have also fought back. Those voices are your demons and sadly, their evil, niggling voices are louder than the inner you. The real you. The one that is shouting and screaming for you to ignore that demon and listen to them because they believe in you. They know you can do it. They know you're worth it and that you are beautiful and just as good as everyone else out there in the world.

I am not going to lie, it is bloody hard work.How do you stifle those deafening voices of self doubt and self hate?  You have to change aspects of your life and your way of thinking. You have to focus on positive things that make you happy rather than destructive things such as alcohol or drugs or gambling. You have to push yourself to do things that take you out of your comfort zone and push yourself into new situations that you would otherwise run away from. Even take on new hobbies or go to new groups.The fear will actually become a bit exhilarating because the more you do that scares you the more you will be pleased with yourself and the more you will enjoy your life.

It's really tough but you have to learn to fight back. You also have to be honest with yourself and those around you as to what's going on. I never said anything to anyone because I was always too ashamed. I always assumed that if I was honest with people about how I felt or what was going on in my head I would scare them away. That people would avoid me and think badly of me. After years of trying to deal with it on my own I finally admitted it to myself  - properly. I admitted it to my husband and my family and friends. Eventually going to the doctor to chat about it was a massive stepping stone for me as it is for most with a mental illness. Saying the words out loud to somebody, even if it was a stranger, was such a hard thing to do. That way is was out there, it existed.

I have depression.
I have anxiety
I need help
Please help me

The whole point of this blog is to tell my story. Both for myself, as a kind of online diary to remind myself of how far I have come on bad days and for reference should I need it and to help others in the same position as I am and have been in. The main stepping stone is admitting you're not OK and however you do it doesn't matter, so long as you do.

Writing for me is a positive escape. When I am writing I am doing something I love that is also worthwhile and has a positive effect on my mood and wellbeing. Rather than seeking solace in alcohol or fast food and sugar, none of which are good for me or my mood, writing only ever makes me feel better. That's why I do it. Even if no one reads my words, putting my thoughts and ideas out there is still beneficial, which is the other reason I started this second blog.

I do hope that I can help some of you out there who feel down or desperate, but if all this ever turns out to be is an online diary to map my progress then that is fine too.


MIND - The Mental Health Charity

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