Living in these strange times

So this year has been fun right? On going lock down arguably being reduced far too soon by good old Boris and his team with budgets being increased in for many provisions, bar one key area……. Mental Health.

It is noted by the government that mental health challenges are going to rise, the question is, why are core mental health provisions still not in place? Counselling services have been reduced by the NHS, which whilst I kind of understand, for those who are struggling more and more every day, where is the support to combat this? In a non-existent world.

So, as most of us have faced additional challenges with mental health during the current situation, I thought as my returning post, I would share some of the dark times I have faced and how I got through them. I had no intention of returning to this blog but with accidentally paying for the web address licence again, I should make the most of it.

Just before lock down my medical situation changed. The doctors began to reduce the strength of my anti-anxiety/anti-depressants medication, so the transition of that has been challenging to say the least. This alongside the complete removal of any counselling has been pretty horrible and gave me 2 options in the moment. Get on with things, or crumble.

I tried the first method for a while….. Well that went well. About 3 weeks in, the amount of anxiety attacks I had daily increased ten-fold. Waking up during the night sweating buckets, not being able to breath and having to sit outside in the back garden no matter the weather until I felt that I could breathe, was incredibly scary. Arguably the worst attacks that I’ve had in years. We have all struggled, but we have all felt alone deep down in this horrendous pandemic. I tried to suppress my worries by supporting those around me who I care about. It worked for a while but deep down Mr Positivity to those around me, was Mr Vulnerable inside. Maybe I should start a new series of Mr Men books if this continues?

I put on about a stone in comfort eating and whilst I have been eating healthier, it is not the point. I felt so alone at times. Having to do university work during this period has been further challenging with horrific anxiety and depressive episodes at times. Luckily during a group discussion module, the 3 people in my group were amazing in helping me, so to those 3, I thank you. These were not the only challenges, but I am trying to live up to Mr Optimistic for now. (Third new book of the series)

I suppose now the whole ‘getting on with it and make the most of a bad situation’ mantra is something I truly am trying to embrace. Being able to see people other than those who I live with, since Boris allowed us to, has been so refreshing. Today I visited somewhere new and it was such a beautiful place with a community feel in the woodland areas as I walked. It is true when they say that during this pandemic, we have been able to start to appreciate the simple things in life such as seeing friends and family when you want to, going to the supermarket care free, going for a drive and just enjoy exploring somewhere new.

For now, lets see how long Mr Optimistic lasts for before I introduce the fourth book of the series, Mr Miserable Sod to the collection. How often I will post, I do not know, but until then, stay safe, get confused by Boris and look after your loved ones.

Ben.