Tag Archives: #Recovery

Welcome To A New Era, And A Rollercoaster One At That.

Well hi there,

It has been quite awhile, has it not?

Just over a year to be exact.

Over the past year, my life has shaped and transformed drastically. I completed my first year of University, making many friends and connections for life, whilst taking that colossal step in living independently in halls; a seemingly impossible task to someone with severe anxiety/depression. But I did it, and I have no regrets in doing so.

My first year of being an English Literature undergraduate went incredibly well, and as I write this, it shall be a month until I move into my student house with the wonderful souls of light that are my housemates, venturing into the second year of our courses alongside each other. The step of starting medication for my mental health began back in April, and for me personally, it was a good decision that has allowed me to finally feel strong enough to manage my anxiety and fears that have had the possibility to suffocate my mind on a daily basis since a young age. Medication is not an answer for everyone, and all those who have been following me over the past few years shall be aware of all the other ways of healing that I have attempted. Albeit, medication alongside therapy has come to be the best combination for me- I feel that my life is changing in ways that I would never have expected, in a positive manner at that.

My mental health advocacy has stepped up a gear…Okay, maybe about several gears?! Not only have I been involving myself with many mental health projects and campaigns, both in and outside of University, but recently, I was one of few young people who were chosen by Time To Change to be a young champion for this exceptionally large movement over the next 18 months. I cannot reiterate enough how many diverse and amazing opportunities this role is going to give me and I am bloody well going to embrace it. If this gives you any indication about how passionate about this role I am, I even travelled to Manchester and stayed there for the weekend with other Young Champions, receiving my training and connecting with many other amazing individuals- And that is before I even meet the other half of the cohort in a few month’s time! I would never of been able to do this a few months previously.38023508_1171591732990095_3935959715690840064_n

Life is something of a colourful sunrise for me currently and I am blessed to have found myself with an amazing and supportive social circle with people from all walks of life. However, we all know that mental illness is not something that disappears, and I would be lying if I said that my mental health is not a bitch. I am sure that the mental health community will agree with me when I say that it can be easier to hide behind a smile and a well dressed façade sometimes instead of being true to ourselves and others

The difference now, compared to when I last was active on this blog, is that I am managing far better and each day I am learning how to balance Uni, work, volunteering and socialising.

In this new era of my blog, I welcome you all to join me in not only my ventures as a mental health advocate, but more importantly, I hope that my blog will act as a reminder that regardless of your mental health diagnosis, life can be beautiful, even when your mind is fighting against you. You shall see the positives and negatives of living with a mental health diagnosis- What is the point in sugar coating our struggles, especially when mental health awareness is needed more than never in the fight against stigma and discrimination??

Identities are made up of many fractions within a human being, and believe me when I say this, you are NOT defined by your mental health. Life and existence are far more complicated and wonderful alike than first perceived.

Much love,

Rhi. X

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Relapse does not mean failure.

Hello, darlings!

This week has been a strange week for me, and I have been very up and down. Unfortunately, yesterday I had a severe breakdown; something which very much made me feel irritated at myself for because I thought I had done so well in improving my mental health over the past few months.

I am using this blog post to not only articulate how I am feeling, but also as a message that having a relapse does not mean you are a failure- We all struggle and it is okay to have upsetting days. When I have a breakdown/ relapse, I always beat myself up about what has happened because in my mind, I have come so far and having a breakdown means that I have gone backwards in my progress.

As I write this, it has been around 16 hours since my breakdown and is about 11am on a Friday morning. ( I thought I would write this morning as I have a busy afternoon planned.) I am drained and I feel rather crappy, but I also do not feel as awful as I did last night just after my breakdown. Last night, not only did I sit on my kitchen floor in tears because life is rather overwhelming at the moment, but also because I felt so angry at myself for being so anxious and upset. I do not feel so angry today. Rather anxious and depressed, but I am not angry at myself for breaking. Last night, I thought that no-one loved me and that my life was a mess. I also do not feel that way today, but instead realise that the reason I did feel like that is because my life has been extremely stressful lately and I am rather insecure at the moment, due to many changes in my life, including moving to Uni in September, as well as so much going on in my day to day life.

We are all trying to cope with life’s expectations and this can be 10x harder when you struggle with mental health issues. Like many people, I need to learn not to beat myself up when I relapse and have a breakdown. The one thing I am proud of myself for this time, compared to back in July, is that I actually talked this time and I didn’t allow myself to become so isolated. I believe that is progress. Yes, I still have a large amount of things to work on, but compared to last year, I am doing much better.

Recovery is not linear, and that is the unfortunate fact about it. However, through all the tears, breakdowns and stress that mental illness brings, you can fully recover. Even when you fully recover, you can still relapse, but even if you relapse, you still have more understanding of your mental health and how to cope effectively in the future, compared to past situations.

I am so proud of how much I have progressed over the past few months, and all of you should also be proud of everything you have achieved. We may fall once in a  while, but we get back up stronger. I still have a long road ahead of me, but I am doing well. Never see yourself as a failure for relapsing, you will achieve your goals and ambitions in time, even if you feel overwhelmed and confused sometimes. I may have to cope with anxiety and depression for the rest of my life, but everyday I learn more about myself and further learn to love myself and who I am!

Right, i am off to have a nice hot chocolate and a biscuit…

Love yourselves and remember; you will have bad days, but you will  also have many more good ones!!

Sending you all love,

Rhi. X