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Helping Hearts Heal
Posted by HelpHeartsHeal
11th May 2015

Sometimes itís hard to know where to start when you feel like you have so much going on in your life. I try to look for the obvious point in my life where the problems started; but I think starting at this present moment is the best choice.

So Iím 23 years old and currently a final year student studying psychology; quite ironic that I would end up studying something that would just make me question everything in my life. I have become a bit of an over analyser since starting my courseÖadd in my anxiety and worrying, and I am now a major hypochondriac!

I live 300 miles away from my family with my fiancťe and my beautiful little doggy since my Mum left to become a carer for my Nan who has been getting more and more ill in the last year or so. I know most people say that they love living by themselves, but for me it is my worst nightmare! I am so used to having a house full of people that now, when my other half is at work and I am by myself, I go absolutely mad. I have no idea what to do to keep entertained; thereís only so many episodes of friends, how I met your mother and Jeremy Kyle that you can watch before you really start to drive yourself round the bend. Thatís why I am grateful that I have my dog; I got her after my Dad died and I was suffering from depression. I knew that if I had her, I had to get out of bed in the morning and look after her; no one else would do it. And true to my word, she really did change my life. Because of her I got out of bed, I got dressed and I left the house; something which I really did not want to do during my darkest times. I call her my guardian angelÖ Most people think I am crazy, but without her I donít think I would still be here today!

I actually work for a mental health charity now too, I started as a student and I just never left. I absolutely love my jobÖwell jobs, I do have 3 of them now! I really do just love knowing that I am making a difference in someone elseís life; I know it sounds cheesy, but I know how important it is to get support from people. Itís something that I never got offered when I was depressed, and to be honest even if I knew about it, I doubt I would have taken them up on the offer. Being 19, depressed, on pills and attending support groups really didnít appeal to me; I suppose thatís the stubborn nature of me. But now I go to work and I am actually over the moon with what I do; I know that I put a smile on someoneís face every day. And I know how much of a difference a smiling face would have made to me.

SoÖI guess itís time to really mention the elephant in the room, the so called black dogÖDepression. I honestly think that itís something that has always been a part of me; my parents split up when I was young and I took that quite badly. I had a few counselling sessions but at the time I really didnít engage, so it wasnít much good for me. Now that I look back I can identify 2 triggers in my life that really magnified my issues; an assault when I was 15 and the death of my Dad when I was 18. Obviously both of these life events are traumatic enough by themselves, but together they were a recipe for disaster.

If I am honest I never really thought much about my assault after it happened: I tried to push it out of my mind, I was very factual about it and I convinced myself it hadnít affected me. It was only later, when I attended counselling again, that I realised just how much of an impact it had on me.

My Dads death was, as you would imagine, the most traumatic experience of my life. He was 48 years old when he suddenly collapsed and diedÖI had never had the opportunity to right our wrongs, and I never got to say a final farewell to himÖsomething which later haunted me.

If I am honest, I donít know what I expect from writing this all down. But I have always found it easier to write down my problems instead of talking about them. I am hoping that, in the long term, I can help one other person feel more understood, less alone, and hopefully support them in coming out of this horrible illness on the other side.

I believe that together, we can all help hearts heal xox

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