Dear 2018

What happened? You left so quickly, and here we are in 2019 already!

Were you a good year? Well, you started off okay. Even after a relationship breakdown at the end of 2017 which left me feeling pretty low, worthless, and unloved, I still entered the year feeling somewhat positive for the future. However, as the months went on, problems in my persona life meant that the depression was starting to take hold again. As difficult as it was, I tried hard not to let it take over my life, and I succeeded. That a big achievement for me.

I finally reached the end of my Psychology degree. Six years of struggling with part time study and working full time took its toll physically and mentally, but I did it. I’m so glad I didn’t give up, even though I thought about it many times. I’m so proud of myself for seeing it through to the end.

As exercise is known for being good for your mental health, I decided in 2018 to enrol in a Couch to 5K programme, not only to look after my mental wellbeing but also to get myself in shape, and renew my passion for running. This is something I’m planning on continuing in 2019.

Increasing my mental health awareness has always been on the top of my agenda for 2018, so as part of my continuing professional development, I enrolled in a Youth Mental Health First Aid course, for which I am now a qualified mental health first aider. The course has taught me how to recognise the signs and symptoms of mental ill health in young people, which I will no doubt find invaluable as part of my youth mentoring volunteer work.

Looking back, 2018 has not been such a bad year, I’ve accomplished a great deal, and I’m in a good place right now. Don’t get me wrong I still have ‘off’ days but I think having less stress and negativity in my life right now is helping toward my recovery. There’s a calmness over me which I’ve not felt for a long long time, and I’m at peace with the world.

So goodbye 2018, it’s been a pleasure knowing you.

Now for 2019!

Love

Ann-Marie

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