Mental Health Insights

Once again, it’s many months since I kept my promise and returned to writing my blog. There are dozens of excuses I could use, but realistically, life just got in the way.

Winter is a notoriously bad time for me. If there is going to be a downturn in my mood or capabilities, the cold, dark months are guaranteed to host them. I don’t need to tell you that this year’s spring promise, faded rather dramatically, with almost the entire world affected by the dreadful Coronavirus (Covid19). Is there anyone on this planet who isn’t affected by it, in some way? I live alone, in the southwest of England, where, thankfully, we haven’t been too badly hit, never-the-less, we’ve had to completely alter our lives. Being in my late 60s, with a host of health issues, I’m one of the many, told to ‘shield’ for at least 12weeks. Thankfully, I’m used to being on my own so it hasn’t caused me too much problem. I’m fortunate to live in a wonderfully supportive area and have people to get my shopping etc, so apart from the inconvenience, I’ve managed quite well.

We’ve been blessed with amazing spring, having bright sunshine streaming through the windows, has certainly been a bonus. Like many, I vowed to use this time wisely, but reality has been very different. I’ve launched into frenzied cleaning and reorganizing, only for enthusiasm to wane, almost as quickly as it began. I’ve attempted to rekindle my passion for writing, for art and other forms of creativity, all to fall foul of apathy. With my voluntary work halted and nothing in my diary, there is very little structure to my week. Daily routines have gone, meals and sleeping are interspersed with far too much time on social media. Wanting to break the spiral, I’ve thrown myself into baking. It’s years since I’ve cooked for a family, but unfortunately, once I get my mixing bowls and recipe books out, I forget I’m not feeding the five thousand! With my freezer bulging at the seams, the only solution has been to eat the delicious offerings myself. Although enjoyable, it’s not a healthy pastime! I’ve also done more than my fair share of thinking. With no desire to sit glued to the television, I’ve spent many hours reassessing my life. It’s certainly been a roller-coaster, with extreme highs and lows. Regret has mingled with happy memories. As for my ambitions, very few materialised.

IT’s OK NOT TO BE OK

One constant throughout my life, has been a struggle with my mental health, I can’t recall a time when it wasn’t problematic. Following divorce and moving to Wells, I took the decision to be open about my mental health, in the hope that it could help reduce the stigma that is often shown to those with mental ill-health. Being so forthright hasn’t been welcomed by everyone, but for me, it has felt the right thing to do. One thing to remember though, this was my decision and isn’t right for everyone. It’s important to do what feels right for you. But whether you speak up, or stay silent, remember – mental health illness is not something you chose – it is not your fault. However you deal with it, be kind to yourself.

Until next time, take care, stay safe and remember you are loved

Rosie xxx.

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