Lark & Lily Loves

Chatty prosecco loving Scot. Designing and creating in the Highlands of Scotland,

  • awareness week, being open about mental health 09 May 2017 | View comments

  • Some of you may know it is Mental Health Awareness week and I feel it is time I was writing this post.

    I am just putting this out there, I have and still am living with mental health.  There I said you, to the world and it feels a bit odd, scary and a relief at the same time.

    'Suffer' is a word most commonly used but I like to think I am dealing with it, trying to change my mind set rather than suffering anymore. 6 years ago i went through around 11 months of horrible depression, something I am still on medication for, and what i thought used to be just me being a worrier, I have descovered/researched is anxiety. 


    I think having an awareness week has given me the chance to write this post but should we really need just a week a year to feel ok talking about a subject that still feels taboo and affects 1 in 4 of us in 2017? Mental health covers such a wide range of areas, it is affecting more of us and it is something we should not be hiding. Having a mental illness isn't any different to any other illnesses like diabetes, thyroid issues, asthma, these are invislable too but people aren't as bothered about hiding those or writing down on a form that they have these conditions.


    When I was signed off from my job in retail banking with depression I didn't want to leave the house.  It is the usual reaction, especially living in a small town, that I did not want to face, 'you not at work today?' . I used the excuse i was on holiday to the first few people i met that asked, then I avoided people I knew. I couldn't get out of bed, I was numb, devoid of feelings, lost interest in socialising, things i enjoyed doing, avoided friends and made excuses to not meet up. I hadn't got anything visalbly wrong with me apart from looking pale, loosing weight and distant alot of the time. I worried my work colleages would think there is nothing wrong with me, I was just 'skiving' work, 'why is she signed off?! we all feel stressed?', but this was more than just feeling stressed. Feeling the way i did, and sometimes still do, eventually affects your body.  Often becoming run down, exhaustion, tense to an aching body and tired all the time.



    It started with feeling drained, tired all the time and just feeling I wanted to go to bed straight after work and not get out it until the morning. It then went to constanly crying after work, loosing my appetite and then onto crying in the mornings/at lunch time at the thought of dealing with customers at work to finally breaking down at the counter serving a horrible man challanging me about access to his account. What was even worse about that, there was no other staff about, I was dealing with a queue of eyes all staring at me and couldn't even leave the counter when i started breaking down. Luckily the customer after that dick of a man was very kind, let me sort myself before i served her. 

    That kind lady went to my mums work after to inform her what she had witnessed. My mum was 'raging' as we say up here and she she took me straight to the doctors the next morning. I fought with her that I did not want to go, I was embaressed and said i was fine, but inside I felt it would be better I wasn't here anymore . If it wasn't for her and her support I would have most likely ended up having a breakdown or worse.

    I didn't want to leave my job like that and I felt it was important I went back. So after 6 months off and trying to deal with what was happening with my body, mentally and physically, I worked my notice and decided to start up Lark & Lily Designs. My business had been something I had already been researching/planning before going through this and I just life is too short for not doing what you really want to do. Once I felt up to it I did take on a wee part time job for a year or so to help get the business going.


    Getting my first dog, Hugo the French Bulldog, a year after I left my job helped me so much. It took me out the house, relaxed me and took my focus away from my depression and anxiety. I then rescued Mabel, also a French Bulldog, from the SSPCA last year. These two fabulous dogs of mine really help me on the days I am not the best.


    I am still working on dealing with my mental health and trying to keep positive. Some days I do not want to leave the house, I accept that and try not to be too hard on myself. Unfortunately being self employed means if I don't work I don't get paid but the positive is i can be flexible with my work. I have days I feel so happy, postive and ready to take on anything and out of no where, bang, I just feel like I can't leave the house/speak to people or my mind is racing so much with critical/anaylitical thoughts I literally cannot function. Luckily I have had a supportive family that have really helped me through everything. Even just little things like not being able to go the the supermarket on my own. 


    I have accepted that it has all been a part of growing into a stronger and more undertsanding person.  I didn't choose to have this health issue but I am learning to not let it take over my life. Using relaxation methods and trying to learn to meditate has been useful to my mental and even physical health. I have recently discovered the pain that I have been feeling over the last few months in my lower back has been a result of years of tense muscles being constantly tight/stressed in my jaw, neck, shoulders. These areas have been tense for so long it has made my whole right side become unaligned with my left. My shoulder blades, hip bones, knees and ankles were all an inch to inch and a half above my left side. My right calf muscles are more over developed than my left because of it too. Crazy isn't it?

    My body was not able to cope with it anymore and I ended up in agony. Thankfully a lovely lady has been working with me, naturally using movements with the body, excercises and relaxation techinques to resolve this. My physically health has suffered due to my mental state.  It is not known exactly what causes Mental Health issues but research has suggested the it can be genetic, brain chemistry and your enviroment.


     I felt it was the right time for me to write about this and if you are reading this and are dealing with mental health then there will be a time for you to talk, when you are ready. As with many people I have met and spoke with going through mental health it is all in confidence. So please do not feel you are alone. Mental Health shouldn't be made aware to us for just one week a year but every week.

    This is a lengthy post, for which I would normally apologise for, but I am not going to. It took alot for me to get this out my head and to put such a personal experience out there for you to read. Cried writing this and re-reading before posting but I feel that is all part of the healing process and dealing with what goes on in my mind. I hope that by reading this you are not alone and that you deserve to live a happy and healthy life.



    *Images used are all from pinterest, I do not own them.

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  • Comments

  • Not registered Created on 10/05/2017 11:12

    Thank you for writing this it is very brave of you,to open your heart to everyone ❤️ xx

    Lynsey: Thank you x

    Not registered Created on 10/05/2017 11:22

    Thank you for writing this it is very brave of you,to open your heart to everyone ❤️ xx

    Not registered Created on 10/05/2017 11:41

    Thank you for writing this it is very brave of you,to open your heart to everyone ❤️ xx

    Not registered Created on 10/05/2017 18:38

    Thank you,
    Lynsey x

    Not registered Created on 30/05/2017 17:42

    i wish i could hug you right now - i hope you feel better most of the days if not then every single day!!

    Take Care

    Not registered Created on 27/06/2017 19:58

    This is such a brave post, thank you so much for sharing it x

    Not registered Created on 27/06/2017 21:33

    It's so important for people to understand that so many people suffer and struggle in silence and that they don't know what's going on! Really brave of you to share your story! So lovely to read those little dogs helped you along the way too. I hope things are a bit better for you now xx
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