A Difficult Time In Your Life: Day Twenty

It all started when I lost my Grandad in 2012, obviously I was upset by it but I coped quite well considering. During this time, I barely cried which upset me more because then I felt like I wasn't as affected as I should have been and that people kind of overlooked my feelings towards the matter. On the day of the funeral, I remember looking around the room and people were crying and upset by the whole thing (understandably) and whilst I was upset about the loss of my Grandad, I got upset most when I looked around the room and felt so alone. It appeared as though everybody had someone to comfort them and I didn't, I didn't know what to do, how to react, who to speak to, so I spent a lot of time with my younger cousins (between the ages of about 1 and 5), as a way of taking my mind away from it and to give me something to do.

After the death and the funeral, I coped and dealt with it okay but a couple of months of later I felt very down and lethargic a lot of the time. I was stressed, low and miserable. At this point, I tried a couple of depression tests online which I knew weren't always that accurate but pretty much every time I did them, they suggested depression within the moderate region, occasionally stretching to severe or lowering to minor on particularly good or bad days. I kept a lot of this to myself until one day when I decided to just print off the results and write down my past ones that I'd kept a note of and I handed this to my mum. After discussing it with her briefly, we decided to speak to the school at which point I started speaking to a councilor type of person at the school for bereavement support and general health support. This helped a bit and towards the start of 2014, I stopped seeing her as I no longer felt I needed to.

Around June last year, I started to feel down and not myself more frequently until it was most days. I felt lost and out of my depth with groups of people that I've always been around and got on with. These feelings only magnified when I started college, I felt so stressed, miserable and worried all the time and overall I was rarely happy. This was when I decided to go back to my previous councilor/helper (as I stayed on at my school) and started seeing her again. This was helpful but I was still having a lot of low days although they did decrease in number a bit.

Last month, I finally decided to go and speak to a doctor and see why I was feeling like I was and what I could do about it. She told me that there were symptoms of depression but we predominantly discussed anxiety although she didn't want to diagnose either of these at that point as she felt that labeling the problem doesn't usually help. Personally I found this partial diagnosis helpful because it helped me to know that what I was feeling was something real and that it could be dealt with.

Since then, things have been a bit better although I think this is because a lot of big things have happened recently that I have to be strong for, positive about and get through. I find that because of these reasons, I can deal with big issues, it's the little things that affect me most.

Thank you for reading this, I'm sorry it rambled on a bit; it was difficult but kind of a relief to put this into words as it's not something I've really discussed before, particularly the anxiety part as only my parents and one other person knew about this before today... It's not a very easy thing to discuss as much though I'd like to be able to, in order to help work towards a less stigmatized and judged future in terms of mental health.

Love, Steph x

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