Each year, for one week in May, the Mental Health Foundation have a mental health awareness week campaigning on a different theme each year.
This year’s theme is anxiety and hopefully you’ll be seeing this banner a lot…
I’ve written before about my ups and downs with clinical depression, but, it’s currently anxiety issues that mean my doctor is still prescribing anti-depressants.
Thanks to the still unconfirmed diagnosis of my migraine/vertigo symptoms and because at times those symptoms are still ending up with me falling over…I imagine to other people when it happens I either look like a drunk or a toddler taking her first steps trying to maintain balance and stay upright! it’s probably thanks to the Prozac that I can even end that sentence with a ‘!’ and find it mildly amusing, but, it also means I’m a little scared to make plans for the future, book concert tickets, arrange days out etc. It’s turned what started as a little pain in my ear (Labyrinthitis June 2012) into a huge pain in the bum quite frankly.
It means that while I was having a break from the clinical depression that used to often keep me pretty-much housebound (some months I only left the house to go to work and walk Stella; I didn’t want to but I had to) new anxieties have taken over and, because it’s obviously a different part of my brain that’s broken this time, it affects me more because I’m aware of it.
Before, I didn’t care if I went out, didn’t want to see anybody or speak to anybody, would’ve been happy (ironic choice of word I know!) to have never been born…now it’s frustrating…I want to go to concerts, I want to make friends and have a life outside home and work, I want to make the most of hobbies…most of all, because my online communities have been so supportive and comforting, and, in many ways my social life, I want to go to blogger events and things! I’d still be the shy quiet one, but, I’d be there!
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…with one in four have us battling some kind of mental health issue or another, if it’s not you it must be someone you know. Be kind. Don’t mollycoddle but make the person aware that you’re there for them.
If like me, one of their anxieties is a telephone phobia, just write them a note or send a text. If I’m having a bad day with my vertigo symptoms and having a banging headache and tinnitus the last thing I’m capable of is holding a conversation. I know it’s terribly boring and frustrating when the person has been ill for ages, but, trust me, if we could switch it off we would!
I may have one black dog by choice but I’d love to be permanently rid of the other one 🙂
(If you’re a one in four, please accept kindness from others, don’t be too proud. There’s lots of online support if you’re not great with people…if you search #MHAW on Twitter you’ll hopefully find lots of ways to know you’re not alone…you don’t even need to interact but you’ll realise that people care xox)