Monday, 20 May 2019

Why I Kept Quiet about Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Health Awareness Week used to be my prime time to share my opinions and personal stories.

This year was different. A part of me feels like I have let people down, because, in the past, I have ALWAYS helped encourage people to speak up and talk about their experiences. This year, the idea of doing so leaves me feeling uneasy and out of my 'new-found' comfort zone.

I have realised that while it is a great cause, I am tired of oversharing my personal life. It is personal after all. Hell, I wrote an entire book on my 21st year of life - which happened to be the craziest and most 'mental' I have ever been. I couldn't run from it so I wrote about it, and while it was the best thing I ever did, I am growing into a person that would love to continue helping others but first... myself.

Don't get me wrong, I will never be quiet about my experiences if I know it will help others find peace in their own trauma or struggles. I don't care what people think about me or whether they like me or not. I have never been the type of person to feel embarrassed, no matter what abuse I would endure. I will forever speak the truth no matter how much it hurts.

I am now living a somewhat more private life, and this is down to experiencing yet another mental breakdown / what the fuck am I doing? / who am I? shit storm that I knew I could blame social media entirely for. I had lost myself and what I stood for. Constantly posting DRIVEL online, sharing selfies where I look dead behind the eyes wondering if each would get more likes than the previous.

It truly is a sad sad world and I don't wish to be apart of such expectations anymore. Life is too short for meaningless crap. I want to live by my own rules and decide what makes me happy, which is:

- Beautiful artwork
- Music that makes me feel something
- Fashion that allows me to express myself
- Gratitude for loved ones 
- Creative quotes

There is so much and I could go on all day, simply because I know who I am and what I enjoy/love. I know exactly what I want in life and even though I still have those moments of darkness, I realise I can no longer be responsible for others well-being. They have to turn the light on for themselves and I can watch from the sidelines, offering support when needed.

I have had such a great week of realisations - being in my hometown provided a lot of comfort and I met a few people who approached me about my book and how much they enjoyed it. That is all I can ask for in life at this moment in time.

I will admit I feel a huge sense of guilt for not raising awareness this year and letting people down but I am learning to be more selfish and that means putting my comforts first. Talking about mental health is the last thing on my list right now - I'm finally realising that is more that okay. 


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