• Michelle Partington

2015 in re-focus.

I’m currently sat in the crew room at work very aware that my eyes feel really heavy and tired. I’m that tired I actually feel a little dizzy. I’m still not used to doing these 12 hour shifts. The job is so mentally draining because your on the phone all the time. It’s really good but with a lot of other things going on as well I just feel I haven’t had any time to do anything. I feel absolutely exhausted and really feel like I’m about to burn out. I feel overwhelmed by everything thats happening. I think one of the main reasons is I’ve started work again for the first time in 2 years. I’m also moving and trying to fit in so much. I’m panicking because I don’t even have the capacity to do my christmas shopping nor writing cards out. Everything on a personal level is slipping, I haven’t even shaved my legs for far too long!!! Too much information?? I have a bag full of dirty washing and things piled up all over the house! I’m physically and emotionally exhausted. I know I do too much but I used to be able to cope with it. I think I’m just out of practice. I seriously need to learn how to take care of myself more and as hard as it is, I’m going to make sure I put myself first, at least some of the time. I’m slowly learning what my new limits are.

Earlier in the week I had to pop into town to finally pick up some christmas cards. I remember seeing some christmas cards with ‘to the one I love’ and other such wording. I felt a little pang of sadness that I didn’t have a partner to send one to. It’s partly my own fault though because I push them away!!! Hey Ho, it will happen when it happens. It’s a good job I’m actually ok to be on my own. Although it’s always nice to have someone there to have a cuddle and a laugh with 😉

Another realisation whilst choosing cards was that for the first time in my life I’ve had to consider buying separate cards for my nanna and grandad. With my nan now being in a nursing home and my grandad in the bungalow it’s a difficult choice on wether to buy a joint card or not. If I did that then one of then would then lose out because it would either sit in one room or another. It was a horrible realisation but to be fair I just feel blessed to still have them both. As I’ve mentioned in previous blogs about our family being called in and told 2 mths ago my nan was going to pass away and we were effectively saying our last goodbyes. She is still very much with us which is a blessing so I guess having to buy separate cards shouldn’t really be a big deal.

Well 2015 most certainly took a turn I didn’t expect. My new years resolution made Jan 15 was to try to just keep it together. I just couldnt focus on any positive life ahead of me. This christmas could have been so very different. My nan is still with us but sadly, unexpectedly my Uncle passed away not so long ago, and I was nearly not here at all. I was dragging myself through life merely existing but look at where I am now. I’m socialising, working (albeit part time) and running a new charity which will hopefully help so many more who are currently where I once was. I had planned to not be here but I’m really glad I am. When I think of how many people I could have hurt, those I love who have struggled through 2015 with their own problems. I could have made them much worse and all because I just couldn’t cope.

What I’ve noticed recently is that it’s really hard being around so many people happy about christmas when all I want to do is go to sleep. My family are grieving and there is nothing I can do about it. I have however tried to get into the christmas spirit and I’ve put up a tree. Instead of putting any old bling on my tree I asked my dear friends and family to donate an item to make it a memory tree. That way everytime I put up my tree I will smile while I decorate it. I would highly recommend you all perhaps do this because it personalises your tree whilst providing some fond memories. If any of you would like me to send you a gift then I would gladly do so. Please send me a message and let me know.

So, after thinking about how I started this year everything could have been so very different. In 2014 more than 21,000 people with mental illnesses spent christmas in hospital as a result of feeling increasingly unwell during the festive period, so many more just ended their struggle. I’m very pleased I wasn’t one of those people. However, this year there will be many who are not so lucky. If you are struggling to handle things on your own, you feel you may burnout or you feel you have nowhere to turn then don’t be afraid to put your hand up and ask for help. Don’t go through things on your own, you truly don’t need to. Speak to those close to you or seek help from our foundation. We will be online throughout Christmas and New Year to talk. Get in touch and register with us here: http://www.behindthemaskfoundation.com. I didn’t talk until it was almost too late, please don’t make the same mistake.

I hope christmas is everything it can be for you all xxxx


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