I think that a lot of people who suffer similarly to me with poor mental health struggle to accept themselves: they feel they aren’t good enough in some way or another, that they don’t deserve to live happily, to be loved, to love themselves. This passing thought that I had at an early age crept up slowly, developing into severe anxiety, depression and anorexia nervosa. Eventually I was completely dysfunctional: I couldn’t eat, speak, read or talk without having weeks and then months of regrets. I built walls around me, shutting the terrifying world out and leaving me alone with my demons. That led me into hospital, which spiralled to a 4.5 year admission of unimaginable darkness. What it came down to was a complete absence of self-love which denied me the ability to use the life tool of self-care and I am almost certain that many who read this can relate in some way. Yet here I am, nearly five years on from my admission and almost one year on from discharge, defying the predictions of several consultants, nurses and many others who told me I was hopeless, that I would die of these diseases.
Recovery is hard, but living with a mental health disorder is so much harder, believe me. But to live you require so many attributes that mental health takes away from you: love & care, an ability to accept these back, self love & a desire to better yourself, knowledge & a hunger to know more, strength & vulnerability, resilience & self care. As you start to live, colour will wash over your life, your body and your mind, but you cannot live if you are only surviving and that is how it has to be if you choose to live with mental disorders. I, for one, chose to break free in September and I feel as if the love and joy that this beautifully boring life has to offer have resuscitated Georgie, because she had died back in May 2013. Heres the thing and you’re not going to like this: To live, to enjoy living, you must risk, you must be vulnerable, you must let your walls down. Yeah, you’re gonna get hurt, knocked down, I have, but its so, so worth it if you get to keep living because the utter happiness I feel today would not be possible if I hadn’t have knocked down my wall, brick by brick, until everyone could see Georgie again and, actually, people seem to like Georgie and I kinda like her too.
Go check out The Page of Words, it’s a beautiful mess describing a beautiful mess of a journey.
‘Love yourself, because that’s who you’ll be spending the rest of your life with.’