This blog is dedicated to the memory of my friends Rajshanker Tony Sarma and Richard Hodgson and to all mental health fighters, survivors, allies and all the dearly departed who sadly lost their battles.
Three years ago I found out I have Osteoarthritis and degenerative disk disease in my spine. This causes chronic pain in my back for which I am on very strong painkillers and I am now disabled.
In addition to the arthritis, I have been fighting chronic Depression and Anxiety (generalised anxiety disorder) since around the age of 7. I had my first panic attack at the age of 17, one year after my Dad died suddenly from a Heart Attack. I have been on anti-depressants since the age of 26, when I finally got help and they have made a huge difference to my life.
Four years ago I lost a very close friend (Tony) to suicide. In the three years that followed, I would lose another close friend (Richard) and two acquaintences also to suicide.That is when I decided to start writing about my experiences with Mental Health on social media, in the hope I could prevent another friend from taking that way out.
That was about 6 years ago and despite in the beginning being told I “wouldn’t get a boyfriend that way” (I’m Bi-sexual by the way) or I should “keep it to myself, facebook wasn’t the place to write about it” I continued anyway.
It made me angry and sad that people would say that, it also made me realise how much of a stigma there still is attached to having a mental illness. I chose to ignore them and in the years since have had many positive experiences, and responses from other people saying it has helped them, knowing they aren’t alone in what they are going through. I have made good friends too.
I now feel it is time to spread my wings a little. I will be writing on here, not just about my experiences with mental illness, but also about coming to terms with becoming disabled, my life in general, my friends, family, music, makeup, glitter, books and most likely a lot about my cat MissChief.
I am hoping that my words help not only me, but anyone who is struggling, or feels alone or that they have no one to talk to. I am here, going through the same fight as you and if you need a chat, please don’t hesitate to contact me on here. I am not a professional, but you don’t need to be to listen.