life

These shadows of mine

March 20, 2017


Deep breath. 

This is hard. 

I’m sitting here in bed staving off huge panic and it’s just me and a blank screen. There’s no one here. I’m not using my voice, and maybe that’s part of the problem, but I can still hear myself throughout my body screaming at me to stop. To shut up. To forget it and carry on.

But it’s about time I said some things because I cannot keep doing this again and again. I cannot keep feeling like this again and again. I cannot keep my mouth shut in fear again and again. 

I feel a hypocrite. My career is based on giving young people empowerment and a strong, brave voice, to stand up for themselves and encourage them to realise they deserve the best. And while I can speak explicitly about my mental health, I’ve never been able to talk about my experiences of abuse. How does that work? One directly links the other. 

Another deep breath.

running

The Marathon Diaries #4: 6 weeks to go...

March 13, 2017


I keep thinking I’m going to run out of things to say in these posts, but no, I ALWAYS HAVE A LOT TO SAY. Grab a cuppa, or large glass of wine, and settle in. God, I miss alcohol… 

Six weeks to go. A month and a half. The marathon is NEXT MONTH, LOL. However, six weeks for the school summer holidays always sounded like a lifetime so I’m just going to channel that, tbh. 

Rather than being terrified of the training, I’m now starting to think about the actual marathon day. Timings, trains, bags, meeting points and, most importantly…

travel

Travelling through travels

March 09, 2017

Cyprus, 1996

When I was a kid, we didn’t travel a lot. We had a good amount of holidays but they were to the same places every year - we never actually travelled in the sense of exploring new places. Holidays abroad would always see us in Cyprus and holidays in the UK would mostly see us in Paignton, Weymouth or Bournemouth. And that suited me fine. I liked my routine and was nervous of change; I liked knowing what to expect and that everything would be good and fine.

(The signs were there, my anxiety says. The signs were right bloody there.)

running

The Marathon Diaries #3: 8 weeks to go...

February 27, 2017


Two months to go. Two. 

Half the training plan done, half the training plan left. 

It’s March on Wednesday and I’ll be saying the marathon will be ‘next month’. 

Jesus Christ.

Honestly, I don’t even think I was this nervous throughout my job interviews, degree exams, A-levels and GCSEs put together. I’m in a permanent state of anxiety, which is rather ironic considering I’m running for Heads Together and only started running in the first place to calm that damn anxiety. 

Help me.

Despite how ruddy chuffed I look in the above photo, I’m permanently exhausted, bored of talking about how my training is going, bored of that being the ONLY THING I ever talk about regardless, and gagging for a holiday. 

But, aside from the constant moaning, some nice this have happened in the last fortnight and I have discovered more… I’m trying to be positive… really…

mental health

My mental health can't be defined, no matter how hard I try

February 20, 2017


I’ve been asked to write and speak about my mental health a lot lately for various people, platforms, and publications. And it’s great! Really. I’m so grateful to share my story and views, often surrounded by mental health professionals with an aim to support young people, and be a part of this huge mental health conversation. It’s important. I can only hope that I’m doing what I set out to do, and empowering people to stand up, speak out, and take notice of their own mental health. 

But…

Of course there’s a but…