Hello all. I bet you had all thought I had dropped off the face of the earth? No is the short answer so here I am once more!
The title of this blog is a lyric from the song Sons of Liberty by Frank Turner.
Also, one quote i have recently found which i am in love with is by John Keating in ‘Dead Poets Society’ and it reads “No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world.” As a writer, this means the absolute world to me. Even as I am typing I am making a difference and that is just magnificent.
Anyway shall we crack on?
Wow, it really has been a long time since I last wrote a blog, I apologize sincerely, life kind of got in the way and I suffered from mental health problems over the summer which basically incapacitated me. But I'm back now, not sure how often I will be able to get blogs up or creative writing for that matter, but I will try my best. I apologise for any spelling errors in this blog, It is getting late and I'm tired so please bear with me.
So here goes. I encountered several problems with my Guide Dog, Yashka over the summer and I was unable to work her for almost three weeks due to a health problem. She is absolutely fine now but I was unable to leave the house without her, I lost all my confidence. I experienced a lot of guilt which is very silly of me looking back, but they always say that hindsight is a bitch-it really is. I know that there was nothing I could have done, I dealt with it as best I could and it's just one of those things that happened. At least I know what to do next time, should the issue arise again.
Being housebound is really not good for me, I tend to start climbing the walls, and I have to have something to keep me busy. I need something for my mind to focus on otherwise I over think and that never ends well.
Writing should have been a great outlet for me, however, it wasn't. I have been experiencing very low mood and a lack of motivation these last few weeks which means I'm utterly exhausted. Everything that I do takes a lot of energy and concentration so by the end of the day, all I want to do is lie down in a dark room. It's not nice I can tell you that. I'm barely keeping up with university work and now that I have entered my third and final year at Derby Uni, I need to start getting work done and planning for my assessments in December. And I have said this before in previous blogs, but I am not sharing these issues in order to gain attention or sympathy or anything like that. This is my way of offloading I suppose. Things make much more sense when I write them down and I often read old blogs and most things make sense now. Like I said, hindsight is a bitch.
However, things are starting to look up. I have been seeing my old friends a lot who have been a massive support during these past few weeks. I don't like voicing what’s wrong or how I'm feeling, it's always been something I have struggled with. But they have given me the confidence to talk more about my mental health. Sure they may not always know what to say, but it's nice to know that they are there for me if and when I should need them. And I think that's all that matters to someone who suffers from mental illness. We need to know that someone cares and is here to support us in our darkest hour. We need to know we matter, we are important and we do belong in this world no matter what our head might be screaming at us. It is hard but I am a firm believer that it will get better, it may take a while but it will. And one day you might wake up and feel a little better than the day before. I would call that an achievement. It’s all about taking the steps you and you alone are comfortable with. Everyone else doesn't matter, it doesn't matter if you aren't recovering as quickly as other people. That's what I have realized in these past few weeks. You just need to do what you are capable of, you need to know your limits. And if you need to cancel plans or just take a breath then that's okay too.
Yesterday I took a massive step in boosting my confidence and self-esteem. There was a volunteering air at uni and I heard that Guide Dogs were going to have a stand there. So I took the plunge and messaged the university if it was okay for me to pop along with Yashka and lend a hand. And I can honestly say it is one of the best decisions I have ever made. I finally felt like I was a part of the uni after three years. I felt involved, my voice was being heard and I loved every moment of it. There was a touch of anxiety but I had Yashka with me and all the students I spoke to were all very interested in Guide Dogs. I didn't know anyone so I couldn't cling to them for support and hide away from the spotlight. Which I think is what I needed. I shy away from things which makes me the centre of attention as that is something I absolutely hate. But I had to talk to people and give them information. I had to combat my fears. I was there for about four hours or so and even ran the stall on my own for around half an hour whilst the volunteer went for a wander around the other stalls. This is a massive step in the right direction and I do feel proud of myself. It doesn't happen very often but it's shown me that I can do things on my own. I went outside of my comfort zone and I think it has done me the world of good, I am more confident in going out. Not sure how long this feeling will last for but I shall enjoy it in the meantime.
I think yesterday inspired me to do some writing and start my blog up again. I've found my voice again after weeks of battling severe depression and anxiety. I have come out of the other side, it's been another battle I did not think I would win, but I guess I did. I know that I will continue battling mental illness and it's never easy to tell when it will appear but I have done this so many times now it is almost second nature. I have battled it many times and even though I am tired and sick of having these problems that make my day to day life so difficult, it is manageable. I can deal with it because I have done so before.
My mental health and visual impairment doesn't define me, it is not the be all and end all, even though at times I just want to give up and never go outside or interact with people around me. But I can't do that, I won't do that. Because that is not who I am, I just need reminding from time to time that I can do things, I can overcome my anxiety and push myself. We all can. It just takes one step at a time. And I promise it will get easier.
I'll leave you with these quotes,
if you're going through hell, keep going. - Winston Churchill.
It is not our abilities that show what we truly are… it is our choices. – Dumbledore, from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too. - Paul Coelho, The Alchemist.
There should be no boundaries to human endeavour. We are all different. However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. While there’s life, there is hope. -
Stephen Hawking (character) ‘The Theory of Everything’
The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. -Jack Sparrow ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’
Look after yourselves.
Until the next time.