Welcome to the Self Care Journey: An Introduction // Mental Health Awareness and more
So…a website! Yay! A nice little break from my high-pitched squeaky voice yet still as much awkwardness and cringe that you know and love (well, hopefully anyway.)
First of all, if you’re reading this, thank you for stumbling upon my blog! Whilst I can’t say that starting my own website has been long on my bucket list, I just thought hey if you’re passionate about something, it’s never too late to start pursuing it, and writing has certainly been one of my favourite things to do. Ever since I can remember I’ve always been THAT girl. You know the one I’m on about. That one little awkward person in the room who always likes to go off on a ramble about anything that comes to mindno matter how trivial - little awkward adventures, self-care tips and advice and sources of motivation…I got you covered! Whether it’s just a random emotional outburst or by chance I actually have something of value to say, I hope you frequent this little corner of the internet for pick-me-ups, motivational posts and weekly reminders that you are capable of so much more than you are made to believe.
Now I know what you’re thinking, who am I? Why should you listen to me? Well truth be told I’m no-one really. Just an average girl from the UK doing ordinary stuff and living what most people call an ordinary life; I’m part of happy family of four, I love going out, shopping and socialising with my friends, I’m a massive book worm and film buff, an avid theatre goer, a high achieving student throughout high school and college and about to start my first year at Durham University studying for a modern languages degree, average size, average weight, average look… but with one difference (aside from being ginger) - I suffer from anxiety and depression.
All of a sudden my life doesn’t seem so normal does it? Instantaneously those words carry such off-putting denotations in modern society, so much so that the majority of suffers in the UK are living in denial because of the fear of the discrimination they’ll receive. Nearly nine out of ten people with mental health problems say that stigma and discrimination have a negative effect on their lives. But what’s even worse is that this stigma doesn’t just come from society but even from family members and friends– people that are meant to show unconditional love and support no matter what. Ican say from personal experience that this is certainly the case – and honestly the experience was horrific. Although I have only recently come to terms with my mental illness, realistically I’ve been battling with it ever since I was about 12 or 13 years old. Only looking back now in hindsight have I realised that the reason why I kept all my emotions and insecurities locked away for so long behind this frigid wall is because I’d been made to feel like mental illness was a personality flaw. That somehow it makes you less of a person. Yep, this opinion has been expressed to me many a time either through insults, rumours being spread about me, or just being ridiculed. “Mad woman” “Crazy” just to name a few. What was even more heart-breaking was that many of these comments I received of people whom I thought where my friends at the time; friends who I believed I could trust with my life. But it turns out they were one of many people across the world to be affected by these mental stigmas. As a result, so many people like me have be made to hide their true emotions for fear of being ridiculed or segregated from the people that they love and are made to suffer in silence. Nearly nine out of ten people with mental health problems say that stigma and discrimination have a negative effect on their lives. But what’s even worse is that this stigma doesn’t just come from society but even from family members and friends– people that are meant to show unconditional love and support no matter what. Yet still so many people are made to feel cut off from the people that they love because of this stigma and are made to suffer in silence – well I say no more.
This journey is all about building bridges, I might not be able to see your face, I might not know your story or know your name, but you can always reach out to me in times of need. No matter how trivial you think it might be, everyone deserves a voice. Everyone deserves to find content and happiness in themselves again. And through starting this journey, my aim is to help you find that. Thus, I welcome you here to join me on my struggle through the highs and lows of what life has to offer. Let each day be a new step. A new path. A new journey.
- Katie x