Sleepless nights

1am

What is my purpose in life?

This is often the though that keeps me wide awake into the early hours of the morning and no matter how hard I try to reassure myself that everything is going to be okay the thoughts won’t go.  I’m 18 years old, how am I expected to know what I want do with my life?  In school we are pressured into going to uni and if you don’t go you are looked down upon because my school doesn’t believe that there are any alternatives.  So in their eyes I am a failure and they aren’t willing to help me or advise me with other paths that I could’ve taken.  I am now alone and I have to find my own way in the big wide world.

 

2am 

Why am I never good enough?

In every aspect of life no matter how big or little it is, we as a society always focus on the negatives.  Its pretty upsetting when you think of it. Imagine this, you have just got a test back and you got 88%, which is an A*, but instead of getting congratulated your parents and teacher just criticise you and tell you how you should improve next time and mock you for making a silly mistake.  No wonder we are growing where mental health and low self esteem is affecting more and more people each day.  Until society changes nothing will get better.  But of course when you are doubting yourself ,you won’t think of this.  You will just put yourself down and you will make yourself feel like you are a failure.

 

3am 

Why doesn’t he love me?

When I am in a relationship I give the person I am with my all.   Often treating them a lot better than I treat myself.  Which looking back in hindsight I know is very wrong, because the only person who has ever truly got your back is yourself. Sadly my partner usually doesn’t feel the same and I am always the one who ends up blaming myself .  Even though deep down I know I did everything I could and even more to make that person feel loved and special.  But I still always feel like it is my fault because they didn’t want ME, they didn’t love ME, I’m not good enough for them.

 

4am

If I lost a little bit more weight and hit the gym more then society would accept me more?

I am 5ft 6 and I weigh 51kg,  by no means am I saying that I am fat but I’m not saying I’m skinny either.  I want to have longer legs, a bigger bum, a smaller waist, a flatter stomach, bigger boobs, smaller arms and the list goes on and on.  But where did I get all of these ideas from? What corrupted my mind? SOCIAL MEDIA is the culprit!  Day in day out we are seeing models who post these ‘perfect’ pictures of their ‘perfect’ life on Instagram.  But what they don’t show us are the regimented life style behind these photos, they don’t show us how the original photo compared to the edited one that has been posted and they defiantly don’t show us them of the bad days.  Because who is going to post a picture of themselves at 11pm crying their eyes out because they’ve been told they are too fat or aren’t pretty enough.

 

5am 

I WANT TO SLEEP BUT MY MIND IS GOING AT 1000 MILES PER HOUR AND IT WONT STOP.

 

6am 

Your alarm is set for 6.30, is their even any point in going to sleep anymore?

Well done Rachel, you let your mind f*ck you over once again.

Can’t you see how weak you are now?

You are pathetic.

 

 

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What’s been going on…

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The past few weeks have been some of the toughest I have had in a very long time.  Everything just seemed to hit me at once, within a couple of days, making it very hard to know what to do and where to turn. To give you a quick summary within the space of 3 day, my sister had been rushed into hospital in the back of an ambulance with bacterial meningitis, my cat die, my boyfriend said he no longer loved me and my mental health severely deteriorated.

I didn’t know what to do, within a few days my life had been completely turned upside down, i didn’t know if my sister was going to survive and I wasn’t able to see her because she was In isolation alongside both of my parents. I really tried to keep strong for the family more than myself, from the outside I was the only one who was holding the family together and keeping them positive.  I was very good at putting up this front and I managed to fool everyone.  But deep down my mental health was spiralling out of control again, and I felt like I couldn’t do anything about it.  I was too afraid to tell anyone because there was already so much going on and I didn’t want to burden them with something else.

Thankfully after a week my sister began to recover, they gave her a proper diagnosis and they began to properly treat her. But just as she began to get better I could no longer keep up this ‘act’ I had been putting on of being happy and healthy and my parents realised that I wasn’t okay.

I have contemplated suicide a few times in my life, but I have never planned it to the degree that I had this time.  I really wanted to do it.  The only thing that was stopping me was the chance that it wouldn’t work,  I didn’t care about the pain id have to endure.  I just wanted it to work, I just wanted everything to be over.

I finally  went to the doctors today and they have booked me in for a psychiatric assessment to review my diagnosis and medication.  I really hope they are able to help so I can begin to properly recover and so I no longer feel so alone and in the dark. I want my life back and I want the happy and bubbly Rachel to return.

SELF HELP

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It has taken me a very long time to realise how important self help and self care is.  So here are a few of my favourite things to do when I feel:

 

Anxious- the way I deal with my anxiety is by distracting myself I try to do this by

  • watching something funny
  • going to the gym
  • calling a friend
  • Write in my journal how I am feeling, sometimes I may just write random words.
  • Cuddle an animal or person
  • go on a walk

 

Depressed

  • have a nap
  • change your scenery
  • open the curtains, brush your teeth and wash your face
  • write a list of your happiest memories
  • invite a friend over
  • get cosy

 

Manic

  • avoid caffeine and alcohol
  • put on music and dance
  • facetime a friend
  • tell someone
  • go on a walk with someone

 

Alone

  • cuddle a pet or a pillow/blanket
  • be creative; write, draw, colour, sing
  • do something that YOU love doing
  • call the person you are missing
  • bake a cake

 

Overwhelmed 

  • BREATH
  • take a step back and try to reassess the situation
  • make a list and number the things depending on how important they are
  • tidy up your surroundings
  • priorities
  • meditate

 

Numb

  • take a cold shower
  • scribble on a blank piece of paper
  • put on a playlist of happy songs
  • read a book
  • get up and go on a walk
  • make a list of things you want to complete

 

Disclaimer: I am not a healthcare professional.  I am just an individual who has suffered with mental health issues for 5 years now and these are a few thing that work for me.  If you have any other suggestions please comment them down below.

 

The Spoon theory

spoon theory

The spoon theory helps to explain the amount of energy used by someone with a chronic physical or mental illness.  Every person has a certain amount of spoons and every task or activity that you complete will ‘cost’ you a certain amount of spoons.

A healthy person has an unlimited amount of spoons, whereas an ill person has a limited amount, which can vary day to day. A person with a chronic illness does not get to choose the amount of spoons they are given.  One day they may wake up feeling great and have 15 spoons and the next day they may wake up feeling awful and only have 7 spoons. Every task costs a spoon, some may cost more than one.  For a health individual this is no problem, but for an ill person it can majorly limits what they can do and it often requires a lot more energy (spoons) for them to complete a ‘simple’ task.

This metaphor is a strange one, but it helps to illustrate how draining chronic physical and mental illnesses can be.  So the next time you see someone struggling, help them out and give them one of your spoons because you don’t know how few they have left.

Life

Life is test,
It isn’t meant to be easy.
You are tested everyday,
Over and over again.
The pain will consume you,
And you will think you have it under control,
But you don’t.
The devil in your head will never go,
But why let it win?
When no one comes out alive anyway?

How one person changed my life…

I never believed in love at sight before I met.  Initially it was your cheeky smile, gorgeous blue eyes and dark brown hair that got me.  You were tall, dark and handsome, what more can a girl wish for? But then I got to know you and straight away I knew you we’re different. We connected on an emotional level and right away we were both on the same page.

No one had ever understood me like you did and after a few weeks of talking to you I felt like we’d known each other for years. You were the first person I ever opened up to and from that day on you have supported me no matter what. Whether it was 3 am in the morning and you had to be up for work at 7, you would talk to me until I’d fall back to sleep so you knew I was okay and safe.

Without you I honestly don’t think I’d be here.  You changed my life and you gave me the hope and strength to keep fighting, even on the hardest days.

Thank you J, I love you x

“Im fine”

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We cannot carry on like this.

We are no longer living.

We are just surviving, struggling to keep our head above the water

We need help, yet whenever someone asks how we are feeling we respond, “Im fine”.

We are now living in a world where someone takes their life every 40 seconds.  Thats 2,160 people killing themselves every single day.

We need to start asking questions, looking after the ones we love and supporting them even when they do tell us that they are fine.

We know deep down that they aren’t. They are slowly dying inside and they need us now more than ever. Even if it is just a text a day telling them that they are loved, or going and sitting with them for an hour.

We need to stop taking our mental health for granted,  because you will never truly understand how alone you can feel until you are in that position yourself.

We will get through this together because;

You are strong.

You are loved.

You have a purpose.

I believe in you, keep going xxx