World Mental Health Day 2012.

What a fantastic video. I urge you all to watch it, whether or not you've experienced depression. October 10th was World Mental Health Day, to be honest I paid little attention to it aside from reading the odd tweet or Facebook status here and there. It's a bit of a controversial one, people tend to fall into one of two categories; one, recovery is awesome, it will get better, keep trying, keep hoping or two, well I'm not recovered, I never will be, I don't want to play along with all this hope crap. There is also the added dilemma that the majority of the focus is placed on depression despite there being many many other mental illnesses.

One thing that did really annoy me/make me uncomfortable was Stephen Fry tweeting the following "It’s #worldmentalhealthday today - thinking of everyone with problems. Let’s at least start by addressing the stigma #proudtobemad". It's all great until the last bit. Proud to be mad? I wouldn't say mental illness is something to be proud of, just like you wouldn't be proud to have cancer. It bugged me. Being ill is not a badge of honour.

So, it's no secret that I've had a tough year. There was a pretty big black dog in my life, and at times I really did feel lost and like hope was never coming back. There's still a black dog in my life, some days he's bigger than others and some days he's so small I barely notice him. My life right now is pretty great. I'm losing weight in a sensible way for probably the first time in my life, I'm working a job in a gym that I love, that pays my rent and that gives me opportunity to develop my first aid, customer service and other skills. I've just been made vice president of the first aid society and have a night shift this weekend with the Red Cross. Tomorrow I'm off to take a further qualification. After a year of fighting I have a diagnosis that allows me to manage my health condition more than when we had no idea what it was. I have friends who will meet me for coffee, meet me for bible studies and housemates who drive me to work and lend me a tenner when the cash machine breaks. In January I will return to my studies and hopefully end up with a pretty good degree. I have just been on holiday with my family for which my Mum paid. There are many exciting, enjoyable and fulfilling things going on in my life right now. It doesn't mean I always feel happy and hopeful, but it means I've got many more weapons in my basket to tackle my black dog. 

"Black dog days can and will pass"


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