I’ve now been working for a month a month of huge change for me. Now, I have been anxious about leaving university and joining the ‘real world’ for months. Terrified of the impact it would have on my mental health as well as trying to adjust like a ‘normal person’. I’ve been very open and honest about my mental health online, because I want to share my story and to encourage others. In my interviews to work with Exonar I spoke about the blog, the mental health work and campaigning I’ve done because I’m proud of it. I’ve never hidden it but I don’t about it. I also know that my colleagues occasionally read my blog, they’ve told me which was both nerve wracking and exciting. Luckily I work with wonderful and understanding people, they’re read and don’t treat me any different.
Of course, I’ll always be honest, there have been days in the past month where I’ve worried that I was starting to slip. My anxiety has been kicking in again and the depression will grab me some days and make me really struggle, but I’ve been living with those kinds of days since I was 15 years old and I know that most of the time they pass sooner or later. It doesn’t mean that the lows are nicer to deal with or that the anxiety attacks don’t make me feel like I can’t breathe but I’m doing it, I’m dealing with it the best I can. I got to work, I get stuff done and try and concentrate until it passes. I think the hardest thing is when I’m tired, because I know tiredness is one of the things that makes my depression really hard to deal with, but I’m learning, working and trying to find my feet. The tiredness is something we’re all dealing with, it’s more irritating than not that it makes me more irritable and prone to low mood.
All in all, I’m trying. I know that I have to live with this and with the support of Ali, my family and knowing that I have people I can rely on at work fills me with hope. This illness may never go away but like hell am I going to let it control my life.
Image from Healthyplace.com