24 January 2016

One Message of Support at a Time...

I cannot express how important support is during recovery. I presume it is the same when dealing with any illness; you always have them days where you feel like giving up. The odds of you creating an already defeated frame of mind for yourself first thing in a morning are always in your favour. That is the nature of this illness and the recovery process; you constantly doubt your ability to make progress and every day is a battle. However, just that one message of support, whichever way it reaches you, can completely turn your day around.

When I first arrived at hospital I received cards from family and close friends, which was wonderful. Having them displayed on the windowsill in my uninspiring room, somehow managed to brighten everything up, including my mood. From the start of my admission I couldn’t understand why everybody seemed to be making such a big deal of me going to hospital, however, this was when I didn’t even know I was ill. It was only as the weeks turned into months and I still hadn’t even been outside, that I realised how severe my condition was. Looking across at the cards, I understood that even if I didn’t believe in myself, there were people at home that did, and that was as much motivation as any.

A few weeks into my hospital admission, I decided to write a post on my Facebook page to inform people of my current situation. I was incredibly nervous about doing it because I felt like I would have been judged and everyone would have talked about it. However, it was something that I couldn’t deny any longer, and I felt that those that cared and understood would be the only people that I needed in my life anyway, so I couldn’t lose anything from doing it. I was absolutely overwhelmed with the response. Old friends that I had lost contact with due to my lack of confidence, and even those that I would just say hi to in passing, where being so incredibly supportive, that I felt a surge of motivation. It dawned on me just how much I had lost out of my life. People did still care about me, and wanted to talk, regardless of me having a mental health condition. It was the push I needed. It spurred on a determination to get better, be healthy and get out of hospital to be able to speak to these people in person. To socialise and communicate, in normal surroundings, doing normal activities. I will never be able to thank these people enough, even if it was just the one message, it still had such a huge impact on my self belief, and consequently my recovery.

I don’t even have to write the names of the people that went completely out of their way, to assist me during my recovery; they know who they are. Hospital visits, phone calls, daily text messages and unexpected cards and gifts; I will never be able to repay these individuals for everything they did for me. They drove all the way to Grimsby to sit on a hospital bed and listen to me vent out all of the emotions I was feeling. They planned my weekend home leave for me, to make sure that I had something to look forward to. They gave me a reason to get up every day, to challenge my behaviours and to eat that last mouthful. Through those individuals giving me that encouragement, it dawned on me that I suddenly had a reason to fight this fight.

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