Ball of Fluff, Ball of Happiness

3rd June. 

Meant to be the start of change, the start of a new life.

And it was.

For the wrong reasons.

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2nd June

I’d quit my job, with the support of my mum who would not let me work one more shift in case I imploded and left this life for good.

Tomorrow is my last day at work. I’ve been given meds. Things will be okay…

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We go home. Okay, let’s go the gym. I’ll see her after the gym and we will have cuddles tonight.

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Then there’s screams and tears and I run downstairs. 

And we don’t know what’s going on. And I panic. And I have a panic attack. And Mum tells me to stop it. 

If I could stop it I would. 

And I pick her up in my arms and I try to calm her down. 

And I carry her to the car. 

And she sits with me, lays down on my lap.

I have no emotions. This isn’t real. 

And we arrive. She is taken away. 

He says it will be fine, probably a broken leg. Worst comes to worst, it needs amputating. 

 

Oh god. Amputation. 

I would have taken that any day. 

 

And then we have to leave.

And I tell her I love her but it’s fine because I’ll see her tomorrow. 

So I give her a kiss and I leave. 

 

I would have done so much more if I knew. 

 

And she watches me walk away.

And her last memory of me is me walking away.  Leaving her.

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3rd June. 7am.

I wake up, emotionless, grey and dull. I pick up her blanket and give it to my mum.

“Give this to her so she feels better and can smell her home”

She nods and takes it. 

And I go to work. It’s my last shift. 

And I tell my co-workers what’s happened and they pout and ‘aw’.

And I keep thinking about seeing her after my shift. No more work.

Cuddles and bed with her. 

And the clock strikes 9am. I’ve only been there an hour and a half.

And my mum appears round the back.

And her eyes are red. Her face is grey. 

And I open the door. 

And she shakes her head.

And she cries.

and I cry.

and I breakdown.

And everyone surrounds me and everyone panics.

And I run to the car and I climb in.

And I panic again. 

We arrive home. 

And the door is opened for me.

And I run in.

There she is.

She is so peaceful and quiet. 

No longer in pain.

Her eyes are open and hazy.

Her paws are bloody and messy.

Her fur smells and is matted.

And I scream and I hug her and I kiss her and I beg her to wake up.

But she doesn’t.

And I cry until I have no tears left to shed anymore. 

If every tear I cried could bring her back, she would be so full of life and then some.

She is laying on the blanket I gave to her.

She never got to see me. She went all alone. No one was there.

Her last memory of me was me leaving. And now she doesn’t know I am here. 

And my world is gone.

and she was a cat. 

a cat.

Just a cat, right? 

but she was my baby.

my world.

And when your world is taken away from you just like that, you don’t feel like you can go on.

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And people share their ignorant and irrelevant points with me.

This post is not for pity. It is for those people who needs some tips. 

Don’t give your opinion to someone who doesn’t need it.

Don’t make someone feel like they are being stupid over something you have no idea about.

Don’t tell someone how to feel.

Keep your negative words to yourself. 

To you it is an animal. To me she was my baby. 

 

Never underestimate what someone goes through. 

Ever.

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You’re depressed but you’ll be okay…

Easter; spring, sun, new beginnings, fresh starts.

It was a new beginning. It a new way of life that I now will never know any difference from. A fresh start in a completely different mind, different body, a new person. A new person with all these messed up issues from my past.

I felt alone, so, so alone. I would sit in my room during this 2 week Easter break and feel like I had no one. I didn’t want to do anything but I needed to do something to get my mind off this shit feeling.

I spoke to my dad about it, but the response was your typical dismissive one.

I don’t understand, there must a reason you feel down? Period?(that little diamond again), “Or maybe it’s just a phase because your friends are working, you’ll be okay”.

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My dread that I felt for work become uncontrollable to the point I would finish a shift and be counting down the hours until I had to go in next week. My mind would be circling whilst I lay in bed the night before, knowing I had to be up in 8 hours…now 7… now 6…

What if I get a rude customer? 

What if I fuck up?

What if

What if

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I’d be turning down extra shifts during holidays, I really did not care about the money- anything just not to put myself in that situation. It got to the point that I actually preferred going to college because it meant I didn’t have to deal with the pressure of the public, the pressure of other humans.

My auntie’s health began to decline due to her spreading cancer.

I was going through some shit with a schoolboy, letting him come in between my relationship, looking back it seems so pathetic, but this had a massive impact on my confidence and my emotions.

Then my confidence in my friendships began to deteriorate, I felt like my friends were just friends with me because they had to be, because they’d already known me and couldn’t ditch me this far into our relationship.

The paranoia was unreal.

Anyone who has been in these shows must know the absolute bitch that is paranoia. I would sit on the sofa at lunch wondering if my friends were even going to turn up, to be honest they took me for granted anyway, so this was just the cherry on top.

I would whack out my phone and start doing depression tests.

“Depression test”

“Depressions symptoms”

“Is depression real”

“Am I depressed?”

“Why am i sad all the time”

Familiar?

I would do these amateur tests and they would come out relatively bad, i.e. go get help because you seem pretty fucked up .

But I didn’t because nobody gets depression, remember? It’s just a phase isn’t it?.

 

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So I’d go home instead and play Ed Sheeran and curl up in bed and cry.

And that was my Easter from March through to early May.

Wake up, be sad, do some college work, cry, go to the gym, shower, eat, cry, sleep.

Repeat.

It changes. When you wake up. Something is different. You don’t want to be there. But it’s not your usual ‘5 more minutes please’.

You really do not want to be there. 

Your body does not let you get out of bed and when you do, you feel spaced, you feel like you have forgotten your routine, you feel as if you cannot make it through.

You want to give up.

You don’t want to be here.

You don’t want to die.

But you sure as hell do not want to be on this planet anymore.

I remember sitting on my bed playing The Sims 3. (another nostalgic element for me, it was the only thing calming me down).

My mum walks in.

I don’t remember what happened.

All I remember is her trying to talk to me about this situation.

She was being nice…?

And all of sudden,

I was back at the doctors.

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Happy to be drinking or drinking to be happy?

February through to March seem a blur to me.

The only real thing that seems to stand out is partying.

Everyone was turning 18.

Yay, let’s get drunk.

Yay!

Let’s drink and absorb this magical liquid that seems to improve my mood for about an hour before I wallow in self-pity, start arguments over nothing and end my night hating myself.

I began to feel blue everyday. Then it turned very dark each morning that I woke up until feeling ‘blue’ for me was actually an improvement compared to this dark, dull grey storm that was occurring in my head.

I hated waking up. I hated going to sleep.

I didn’t want to be. 

I didn’t want to do anything, I felt like I was just floating in space, kind of like an out of body experience.

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Each Saturday it was someone else’s 18th birthday party at the same place, same people, same music, same thing every week.

I struggled to make it through work, somehow I did. Now I look back I really do not know how I did.

Usual routine:

  • Eat carbs to line your stomach
  • Shower and tan
  • Off you go to your mates house feeling like Christmas has come early with the amount of sacks of make-up you have.
  • Get ready, pre-drink, take some bomb-ass selfies and go to the party.But for me, my usual routine became…muddled.

My intentions for pre-drinking  were no longer to spend less money later on that night.

The intention was to get absolutely smashed that I forgot about how shit I felt about my life and myself in general.

“You’re so funny when you’re drunk”

I love you when you’re drunk”

Positive reinforcement for drinking alcohol… and so it became a habit.

No one knew that my reason for consuming so much of this drug was to put a guard up, to make it even less obvious that something so worrying was going on inside of my brain.

My friends just saw me as the happy, silly girl having a good time.

What they didn’t see was the self-disgust I felt the next morning on why I let myself get so bad. 

What they didn’t see was this happy, silly girl curled up in her bed every night crying and wishing she was no longer walking on this planet.

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I was drinking every weekend, my liver was probably screaming but I was taking advantage of the fact I never got hangovers, and so I carried on.

In that moment I felt good, the music was good, I was having fun with my friends.

Then the party would end and it would hit me in the stomach and drag me back to Earth.

4 hours of fun does not make up for the way I have been feeling 24 hours a day.

Back to reality.

Wake up Sunday morning, grey skies both outside and inside of my mind.

Then you get this feeling of contemplation. You stand there and just think about life and question why you did any of the things you did.

 

Looking back, I do not regret drinking. I regret why I was drinking.

It wasn’t to have a good time, it was to drown out my emotions and make myself feel numb from the pain that was going on.

One thing, if anyone reading this was to take away from these posts, never try to numb your feelings.

You end up thinking things and doing things that are irrational, and do not help your situation.

Use alcohol as a way to relax, but never to drown yourself in.

It may seem like the best thing to do at the time, I have been there. And it sucks when someone tells you what to do, one thing I hate is how people tell me how to feel.

But one thing. One very important thing.

Feel your emotions. 

Hit rock bottom. 

Feel like the world is crashing down and going to shit. 

 

Because then you know what it feels like to be lifted back up.

Sometimes you have to feel so bad that you know you do not want to feel like this anymore. 

Don’t use alcohol to numb these feelings, it really does not help. Express your emotions.

Cry. Scream. Just feel.

When you are contemplating turning to a drink to forget the world, just think: is it worth it?

You will be back in that same situation tomorrow night, and the next, and the next.

You are going to have those days, we all will.

But we are strong

It is stronger of you to breakdown and face up to your emotions rather than washing them out with alcohol.

And when you rise back up, because you will rise back up, you will look back and realise that you are human.

You have emotions, and you will fall.

But depression, anxiety, bipolar, any mental health disorders do not control your life. 

You are in control.

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Happiness?

February 11th.

On my way to Disneyland for 5 whole days but I wasn’t as excited as I thought.

 

No, I was so excited.

 

But I wasn’t.

It was weird.

It’s like I mentioned previously. I was sitting on the Eurostar knowing full well this time in five days I’d be sitting in this exact position on my way home and back to reality. I don’t know what got to me more, feeling this sadness or the fact that my brain wouldn’t let me control this feeling of sadness. Maybe if I knew I was in control, it wouldn’t have such an impact on me?

Just take a moment to imagine feeling so down and dark and trapped inside your own head, with your brain telling you all the worst things you think about yourself. Then imagine your brain telling you that all the people around you think them too. Then imagine this feeling of claustrophobia because you know  no matter what you are stuck with these thoughts forever and nothing can stop you from thinking them and no one will understand and

Then it started to hit me, I arrived at the station and heard the screaming kids, the fairy-tale music and saw the tip of the castle roof in the horizon.

Okay. I’m here. I’m here.

I am away from reality.

I am away from everyone and everything. 

One thing about me, I love to hold on to memories of the past. I have trouble with change and moving on. I am obsessed with Disney because it represents my childhood, no cares, no worries, no depression, no anxiety.

So now I’m here. In a land dedicated to childhood, to having no worries, to having no cares in the world.

I’ll never forget my boyfriend’s words.

“You’re like a completely different person here, I’ve never seen you so happy”

This was happiness. Wasn’t it?

I seemed happy to him, so did this mean I was? I mean, I was.

I was very, very happy. 

But it was a different happiness. I was happy in this moment, I was happy because I was here. I was happy because something good was happening.

Was it true happiness?

Happiness is defined as ‘the state of being happy‘. So yes, in that moment, I guess I had happiness.

But what about when I came home? I wasn’t. I wouldn’t say I have happiness in life because my day-to-day life is not filled with princesses and castles and candy apples.

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The reason this is so significant to me is not to brag that I got to go to Disneyland.

It was the start of me realising I wasn’t normal. Something wasn’t right. I came home and dreaded everything. Maybe I had realised what I was like when I was happy, and now I know that I don’t have that in my life.

It wasn’t me thinking that I can only be happy if you whisk me away to a far away land.

It was the fact that I now knew how I felt when I was happy, confident, positive blah blah blah.

It was the fact that I now knew I did not feel this. Ever. I hated everything. It was the fact that Disneyland showed me what I should aspire to be like in my life.

I should view my house the same way I viewed that castle.

I should adore my boyfriend the same way I adored Mickey and Minnie.

I should be grateful for every step I take on this earth the same way I was grateful for each step on those tiles I walked everyday.

But I just couldn’t.

I went to work the day after I returned home. No one really likes work, we would all much rather stay in bed. But I got on with it. Yet, that day was unusual. I felt very exposed. People were looking. My confidence was down. A lot.

I didn’t want to serve customers. I was scared. They intimidated me. I felt alone with a shop full of people. I felt like I forgot everything to say, to do.

Writing this now still brings back those feelings. That is how strong they were. I cannot explain how vulnerable I felt and I had never felt like this before.

I’ve been singing for ten years. I’ve performed in front of hundreds of people, all eyes on me, yet this was the most exposed I had ever felt. 

I had been working there for two years, why did I feel like I had only been there for two hours?

The day ended.

I went home.

I decided,

I hate my life.

Hormone Imbalance

So it had been a few weeks. Crying here and there but not thinking anything of it.

The usual.

I came home from school and got into bed. My beautiful cat came and perched on my tummy as I lay looking at the ceiling contemplating my life. As cliche as it is, when you are in that state of mind, your brain loves to make yourself question your own existence.

Why are you actually here?

What is the point? We’re all going to die someday.

Two hours passed so very quickly to be wasting more seconds of my life but so very slowly to be left alone with your thoughts for that long.

My mum returned home.

One thing that stands out in this whole situation is my relationship with her. As I will expand later on, my mum and I have never been close. She has a temper. So do I. She has views. So do I. But they’re not the same. We are so different that it makes us so similar yet we clash.

The relationship is dysfunctional.

She comes home.

“What are you doing?! Why are you just laying in bed in the dark what is wrong with you?!”

Thank you. I needed that.

I didn’t respond. My head seemed so delusional and messed up, I was in a vicious cycle. Was I like this because of factors such as her? Or did she just make it worse? It became like the chicken or the egg debate.

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Eventually, when we got there, she finally saw something was wrong and we went to the doctors.

My doctor was…good.

Honestly, he  scared me. Completely intimidated me.

I was meant to be going to get help yet I felt the least comfortable I had felt in a long time. I sensed urgency about him.

Tell the girl she will be alright, it’s a phase, write down your moods in a diary. Blah blah blah.

I never even thought about mental health before this all occurred, so I don’t really blame him for not thinking much about it either. It’s a shame. It shouldn’t be this way. But it is.

He told me I had a ‘hormonal imbalance‘.

It’s not depression, that’s far too drastic.

“Keep you thoughts written down and your mood levels recorded each time you have your periods”.

 Oh yes. I am a girl, therefore whenever I feel the slightest bit of emotion it is because of my periods. I did not realise my uterus could cause such an impact on my life.

 

So, I took some tablets, Utovlan (norethisterone). I didn’t question it, to be honest I barely even remember listening to him explaining what they were even going to do. I just kept thinking why am I even here if I’m not going to be taken seriously?

Turns out the tablets help in delaying periods, and he gave them to me to try and balance my hormones during this time.

It didn’t work. Clearly.

To start with, I thought it did. I spent the rest of that and 2016 relatively happy. 2016 started off pretty bad with my best friend getting with the boy I had liked for three years, but oh well. I moved to a bigger house, decorated my room just the way I wanted it, I made so many new friends, went to many house parties, completed my GCSEs, got a two-month-long summer, got a boyfriend, and even got an unconditional offer for university.

Life was okay. Things were okay.

In general, I would say I was content. But there were days where I just could not be happy no matter what.

Those who have had any experience with mental health may know this feeling where the negative thoughts take over.

I could be at Costa with my mum, she would buy me a coffee and a croissant, and I would sit looking out the window thinking; I know I should be happy because it’s a Saturday morning, I have the whole weekend to chill and do something fun but that has to end at some point.

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No matter what you are doing, whatever it is, it must come to an end so what is the point of enjoying it? I could be at a One Direction concert (major die hard fan btw), yet all I would be thinking is how long it has left until it is over and the sadness will return.

I could be in Disneyland and be counting down the days until I have to go home and return to reality.

It is like a drug. Like I was addicted to thinking negatively no matter how hard I tried. What’s the point of bothering when it has to come to an end?

What is the point?

I have thought that way too much, haven’t you?

And when things seem like they’re all okay, something comes round to haunt you again. My 2016 was the misleading trailer for my movie-flop which was 2017.

New Years Day, 00:01am, Jan 1st 2017.

“This is a big year for you, you have your last year of A-Levels, you’re going to Disneyland and you’re starting university!”

Yes. It was to be a big year for me.
But not how I expected it to be.
And certainly not for the best.