Friday, February 27, 2015

Anxiety & Depression | How It Stole My Life For Two Years ♥

In my teens I was an outgoing person, I spoke my mind and never shied away from voicing my opinion when I thought someone was in the wrong. I was the thinnest I had ever been, went to the gym everyday, even if it was for just twenty minutes. I walked miles on end and enjoyed every minute of it. I had my first ever boyfriend, was always out and about and I was happy.

I didn't notice anything was wrong or that my personality was changing, I just thought I was becoming more reserved, part of growing up I thought - oh how I wrong I was.

In January 2012 I quit my job, a decision I chose to make after a series of events which devastated my world and made me not want to be around people anymore. I used to stay in my boyfriend's apartment all day watching reruns of old television shows and films and my only task in life was to have a dinner ready for him when he came home from work. I thought my life was great, looking back now I know different...

I became pregnant in May 2012. I was 22 and I felt like everyone judged me. I thought I would lose all my friends and was terrified of being alone, sadly I already was apart from my boyfriend, who I saw everyday.

Days would go by when I wouldn't even interact with anyone else other than my boyfriend. I lived like a hermit and withdrew myself from society. I didn't feel the need to leave the house, even popping down to post office under my boyfriend's apartment seemed like a massive journey for me.

If I did have to go out I would cover up, go out at times when I knew not many people would be around - early in the morning or late in the afternoon, and I didn't tell anyone about my pregnancy until I was seven months along.

Looking back I guess I felt as though I should be ashamed of my pregnancy, after all, I was unmarried and 22, I couldn't have imagined my friends becoming pregnant at that age and I thought no one would understand. I have one picture of me whilst I was pregnant and my face isn't even in it and I am so sad about this fact.

I'm sad that I felt as though I should be ashamed of my beautiful baby boy, who was planned and wanted from the beginning, and this is something which makes me incredibly sad. People's opinions about my pregnancy and relationship situation were so hurtful and made me incredibly angry, which I discussed in my post Putting the Cart Before the Horse - a phrase which I'm sure a lot of other younger mothers have heard also.

After giving birth to my son I withdrew even more from society, something which I didn't think was possible. I removed people from my life who I felt thought negatively about me. I was scared to leave the house with my son on my own, my beautiful high pram sat neglected in the living room, used only for rocking him to sleep - such a terrible waste.

In March 2013 I found some solace in the online community when I began this blog. I felt welcomed by certain individuals, sadly most have them have given up blogging now, but I felt as though I had a little space in the world to air my thoughts and communicate with people of similar interests all from the comfort of my own home. Blogging has been my sanctuary and saviour since that time.

I suffered with post-natal depression after having my son. It is the worst thing I have ever been through and I wouldn't wish those feeling of loneliness, uselessness and sadness for reasons you don't even know, on anyone.

I had a beautiful, healthy baby boy - what was there to be depressed about? I wouldn't open the curtains in the house, I just wanted to shut myself away from the world outside and be safe inside with my baby boy, I would only leave the house when someone was with me, which, as you can imagine was very inconvenient.

I lost all of my friends during this time, anytime they wanted to meet I would make up an excuse not to, not because I didn't want to see them but because I just couldn't even contemplate leaving the house, especially if it was to go out at night. They didn't understand and to be honest I couldn't really explain because I didn't (and still don't to an extent) know why I was feeling this way.

It was as if a giant wall came up in my mind anytime I thought of going out, it's the only way I can explain it and no ones seems to understand this analogy. It's quite funny looking back now as people always commented on how positive I was about life, I guess I became a fantastic actress with my pretend smile and fake laugh...

As my son got older I realised I needed to make a big change and push myself to interact with people and start going for walks. He's such a social little thing and in some ways I feel as though he's saved me from slipping deeper into isolation, he spurs me on to change how I think and actually socialise with people.

I made friends with two mothers in my area whose sons are of a similar age to my son, I can't even tell you the difference it made to me having friends who were mothers also. They understood me and knew how hard life could be with a baby in tow, it was refreshing to have their company to say the least.

Having my miscarriage in February 2014 set me back again. Once again I felt myself withdrawing from the world and in the weeks that followed I had feelings of abandonment from my partner, who was working all the time, not speaking with my family members and I felt as though I had no one but my son.

I felt so alone, let down and in despair. I don't know how I got through that time but thankfully I did and in the months that followed I tried making differences to my life and in particular my appearance. I began a weight loss journey and stuck with it for three months, I did really well and was so proud of myself for the first time in a long time. I felt the best I had done in years and it was great, however, in the autumn I began conversing again with someone from my past and it made me feel horrible.

I compared my life to theirs and how great their life and future seemed in comparison to mine, it put me in turmoil and although I pretended everything was fine it really wasn't. I just wanted to run away from everything and everyone, it was at this point that I knew I had to change for good.

As the new year approached I made the decision that I had to change and I'm very proud to say I have. I went into 2015 with a positive mindset, a mindset which has stayed throughout January. In December I began seeing someone for my anxiety issues and just this week they told me that it seems as if I've "turned a corner", words which I've been wanting to hear for a long time now.

The things I've accomplished in this month may seem like the smallest, everyday things for most of you reading out there but for me it was like climbing mountains. I now go out on my own without panicking or planning my route days in advance. I drive my car again without being terrified of crashing and am able to go places on my own and speak to people without feeling like an absolute idiot. February has been a very strange month in terms of how I'm feeling. My mood has been a bit down but I think it may be due to the events of last year and how they're still imprinted on my mind.

I wrote this post so that I can look back if things ever go badly again and realise that I never want to feel that helpless and alone ever again in my life. I want to be able to read the words "turned a corner" and remember all the differences having a positive mindset have made to my life. I still have a long way to go before I can say I am a truly happy and confident person but I'm getting there.

To anyone who suffers from anxiety or depression or both remember that it does get better but that you have to try and get out from that dark cloud yourself, no one else can make you appreciate the sunshine again when all you're longing for is the rain...



  1. very honest, well done, i am one of those people who are always afraid to crash the car too and constantly worried about my kids but positive attracts positive so am trying to be, well, more positive!

  2. Thank you for opening part of your soul to write this heartbreaking, yet inspiring read. Your words are not lost on me as I struggle with depression on a daily basis. Thank you for your bravery and strength.

    Mindful Rambles

  3. Fiona your so brave to put this post up! Chin up stay positive! Big hugs x

  4. Thank you for sharing such an honest post. I've fortunately never suffered with depression but some of my close friends have and I can't begin to understand how tough things can be. I'm glad you're in a better mindset now and how lovely that blogging has made such a difference to your life! I love reading your blog :) xx

  5. Such a brave and honest post. It can be so hard to admit it but once you do the world starts opening up a little bit more again. It sounds like you had a pretty tough time of it so its no wonder the world gave you a dark cloud to hide under but it sounds like you're doing a lot better now, I'm glad. I hope you continue to do well, from a fellow PND-er in recovery.

  6. I went looking for this last night and couldn't find it, I'm glad it's back as it's an incredibly brave post. I would never have guessed that you found things tough from reading your blog, but I found that once I realised I wasn't the only one feeling the way I did, things got a little easier.

    Like you, I found it hard to leave my house sometimes. I was in a really toxic relationship when I found out I was pregnant, to the point that I didn't take care of myself, or tell anyone I was pregnant until I was seven months. I was living at home but became so withdrawn I stayed in my room most of the time, only leaving to work or eat.

    His father, and I use this term as loosely as possible, flitted in and out of our lives for the remainder of my pregnancy and the months afterwards. He didn't want to be part of our lives, but didn't want me to move on either. I started counselling, but didn't find it was right for me. Things came to a head when I had to contact the guards about him harassing me through constant emails, turning up outside my house after I moved out of home with my son, and somehow knowing my every movement. I realised I couldn't let him get to me. I was locking myself up in the house, terrified of not knowing what was out there. I used to get really worked up about nothing. I began to resent my son, as I blamed him for the way things had turned out.

    Somehow, I came out the other side. Now, there's nothing I wouldn't do for my son, and I don't give it head space. Through writing in a journal, I was able to separate my feelings between my ex and my son, and I'm all the better for it. I felt able to move on, and feel positive for the first time in years. Shortly after, I reconnected with an old friend, who I ended up dating. Now, we're all living together as a family. Sometimes, it surprises me that I'm not still that scared girl from three years ago.

    I know I can't possibly imagine what it feels like to have depression, and would never want to take away from your post. But I know what's it's like to feel like you're not yourself anymore, and feel anxious about social situations. If you ever need to chat, you know where I am


  7. thanks for the honest post.

    I am sure things will get better from here :)


  8. Having suffered with depression and anxiety my entire life, I know how difficult it was to write this post. I applaud your bravery. For me, the depression isn't always there. it's more like periods of my life. Although, I married for a second time two and half years ago and separated almost one year ago. I've been in this horrible hole since the weddng day. Wow, I just realized that's 2 1/2 years. I so want to not live like this. Hopefully, I'll be turning a corner soon too. I always enjoy your posts. We have very similar tastes. :)

  9. aw fiona, such an honest post, I feel for you. you are so strong, keep turning the corner..big hugs xx


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