Now anyone who knows me, follows me on any social media or has ever read my blog knows I am more than open about my mental health. My mental health really is what defines me, as sad as that is, that is what rules my life whether I like it or not. It has done for years, too many years and too many times I have attempted recovery, thought I had got through it and then gone back 3584354 steps. Too many times I have cried and cried and cried because I never feel like it will end. Too many times I have reached out for help, received it but my brain doesn’t process it properly. TOO. MANY. TIMES.
I’m currently going through my worst ever spell of mental health. I have gone to absolute rock bottom to the point of wanting to be taken away, too scared to leave my counsellors room because the fear of real life was too much.
I really hit rock bottom, I thought I had done before throughout it all. I thought I reached rock bottom when I reached my lowest weight in my eating disorder, I thought I reached it when self harming was something I turned to (trigger warning, I’m sorry) I thought I had reached it time and time again. But I hadn’t, this was rock bottom. This time right now was rock bottom.
Feeling disconnected from the entire world, just floating about it felt like but not in a good way. Not in the floaty way you feel when you’ve had a few shots and a few glasses of wine, floaty in a way that I was scared to leave the house, scared to go to work and scared to just face life. I have been in a very, very dark place.
My health anxiety has reached ultimate heights or should I say ultimate lows. I have had multiple doctors trips “I’m scared my hearts going to stop” “do I have a brain tumour?” “do I have ovarian cancer?” – no Shannon, you’ve got a case of the old ‘anxiety’ and ‘depression’ dear.
Simple as that. A doctor even visited my house and all of the things I told her she explained were typical signs of major depression.
It’s not a surprise, I went through a lot earlier in the year. I lost my granddad and a relationship and a home within the space of 2 weeks. But then I met an amazing boy shortly after who saved me from that awful time, it’s just all caught up to me at the wrong time.
I feel I’ve used my grief in this way, I fell deep into my depression which I had under control and even deeper into my health anxiety which really, never goes away. It’s been present for a very long time but not quite like this.
I’ve called 111 too many times and even had a trip to A&E. I’ve done everything to feed my health anxieties wants and needs but what about mine? What about my needs as a healthy functioning human? What about my happiness? Why does my mind want to deprive me of the happiness I deserve as anyone on Earth wants to.
I deserve to enjoy things again, to go out and have fun with my boyfriend and our friends, to see my nephew without crying when he leaves (why I do that, I DO NOT KNOW) to spend time with my mum without getting into crying matches about how hard this all is.
I deserve to gain back the girl I have lost over the last couple of months. She disappeared a little bit but she’s in there, fighting to get out slowly but surely.
Before I would always feel awfully guilty about having time off work but the fact of the matter is I even had to be signed off work and you know what? That’s okay. I needed to look after myself instead of sitting at my desk running off to have yet another panic attack, I needed time. I needed time to realise how bad it had got and I couldn’t do that in a work environment, and that’s okay.
I would never ever shy away from my mental health. I would never lie to people and say I’m okay when I’m not. I’m not okay, but I will be. I can see that now, a few weeks ago I couldn’t see that, I couldn’t admit that I would one day be okay again because I felt in too deep. I’m getting out, slowly, that girl is coming out of the awful dark hole she fell into.
I no longer want my mental health to define me, to sit at my desk at work and have panic attacks out of nowhere, to sit with my mum in town and ask her if I’m dying. I just want to live my life the way I deserve to live it; by having a fuck tonne of fun.
The journey to the end of mental health is not an easy one and never will be, everyones journey is so different. It takes as long as it takes, a broken bone fixes in time…the things tangled up in your mind untangle in time. With love, support, confidence and hope it will happen. I believe that now.
Always speak up, never shy away. Never, ever, ever. There is always someone waiting to help you, a counsellor, a doctor, a friend, a colleague, a parent, a brother, a sister, a stranger online, anyone. Mental illness is a secret little bugger just waiting to strike anyone, literally anyone and we must support each other in this fight to reach the other side.
Never give up, life is too precious.
I want to get through this to prove I can and never look back again.