It has been one tough year, from a totally mental breakdown (Which I was open and honest about), self harming, suicidal thoughts (Which at the time I did not realise that it was actually that bad or serious) to a slow recovery with massive ups and downs. In the early stages of my recovery I decided to sign up for the hike dawn to dusk, a twelve hour epic hike for the charity #mind who have supported me to recovery and support all mental health problems. Have I doubted my ability to do it, more than you can imagine and not just physically but mentally too.
Over the coming months I went to one to one therapy which dramatically improved my wellbeing, without that I truly believe I would still be suffering, that and my focus about my charity hike spurred me on to keep going, I even picked up a song that inspired me during my training, David guetta and Sia’s “Just keep moving” if you listen closely to the words you will understand why it inspired me.
For a good week before the hike I have had mixed emotions about the hike and why I was doing it, I fully knew I would find the anticipation tough but not as tough as I thought. On registration I was not feeling good at all and decided I would stay in the local hotel rather than the YHA and as soon as I made that decision my mood started to lift.
That evening i had to keep reminding myself why I am doing this hike, why I decided to book it in my low momentsand why it was so so important I started the hike alone finish it.
On the morning of the hike it was dark, cold and wet and when I entered the tent to see others having breakfast I joined in and felt ready to go, ready to achieve my goal I set some month ago.
I had a good chat with some lovely people on the hike, have a chat really helped me at the start and then I was fine for a while, I decided to focus on me for the majority of the hike and connected my earphones and listened to inspirational songs, motivation songs, some cheesy pop which helped me out however I did still speak to people as and when was required.
Half way through my charity hike and I’m feeling a little low due to the emotions and thoughts coming back to me. These thoughts are not my original that caused depression but the thought going through it and how hard it truly was to get better, to focus on this hike as a long term goal.
I must say at the end of the hike seeing all those people who were clearly struggling physically but continuing in aid of someone they know, maybe themselves was truly inspiring. It made me realise how my physical fitness was so ready for the Hike and even more so my mental health was, and throughout the day when I had a few dips were my reflection moments and I’m pleased to say they past smoothly and at the finish line I felt an accomplishment like no other, not that I completed the hike but I SURVIVED!!!!!
Am I “cured” if you want to use that word or a better word is “recovered” well the answer is NO, so will I ever be me again; well actually who was I, what type of person was I when hiding my emotions, thoughts for all those years, did it effect me in some way? Am I myself again, once again I know the answer is NO, I truly believe I am a better person for what I and my family have been through.
As this is my last blog for “my journey” I wanted to say thank you to so many people and organisations who helped me without My judgement,
My doctor who saw my original state before anyone else and helped me straight away,
My family who did not judge me, did not care why I was off work but just so so supportive to seeing me get better.
The Samaritans who got me through my darkest moments.
The NHS and all the staff who put their feeling, emotions aside and focused on me.
Mind Charity who helped with there sole focus of mental health.
Most of all my wife Julia, for being so understanding my actions without truly knowing why I did what I did, everyday being there for me no matter what, no hesitation, no questions asked, no judgement just pure love.
It can’t be easy for your sole mate to see you at your absolute worst and this not only broke my heart but it inspired me to fight, not just for myself but for my family.
I knew I could beat this with my support but 90% + of the fight has to come from yourself, My advice to anyone out there on the brink of mental health issues just stop what you are doing and evaluation your life, why you drink every night, why you don’t want to go to work, why you feel angry, frustrated, sad. It can take time but do it I can see now my actions, My ambitions and stature was a mask and not truly me, what I wanted. Money is nothing, a good job is nothing possessions are nothing if you are lost, please remember this and don’t make the mistakes I made thinking I am a strong person when deep down I knew I was not and now I am not ashamed to admit it.
Please if anyone who reads this just understand one thing just one, YOUR LIFE IS WORTH MORE THAN YOU CAN EVER IMAGINE, cherish it and enjoy every moment to the fullest.
I leave you now with my most inspiration phrase I have ever come across (and I have come across many)
“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done”
And let me tell you all I have won! 🥇