Wow! Honestly, I don't really know where to start, so I'm just going to jump in!
Lockdown gave me this amazing gift of time and the opportunity to think about my life and...
...I've found my voice and I refuse to hide anymore!
So I thought I'd share my story with you and I hope you find it inspiring.
17 years ago I had a life changing experience. I spent 3 days at the Priory mental health hospital in London.This incredible experience completely shattered my world, everything that I thought was real was gone over night. My family was blown apart. Nothing would ever be the same again. It was terrifying.
I grew up, in what seemed to the outside world, as a loving and stable family. This is what I thought too, but there were things that didn’t quite add up and I couldn’t work out what and why.
My experience at the Priory showed me how my survival mechanism growing up was to sacrifice my true self and create this other person my parents and society wanted me to be. It was this version of me that was accepted and loved, and it was on the strictest condition that I towed the line. One false move and I felt I would be rejected. So my true self almost completely disappeared and shrunk to nothing. I was just a shell.
So I began this exciting, scary and exhausting process of rebuilding my life. It’s been hard but I wouldn’t change this experience for the world. In fact, I wished it had happened sooner. I am still discovering myself, learning who I am and it feels so good.
My family has put itself back together as best it can. I have learnt that we only know life from our own experiences.
As I peel away the layers of my old habits, learnt behaviour and survival techniques, I am gradually finding my true self and who I really am. Key moments of discovery keep on coming. A couple of years ago my Mum was seriously ill and spent 8 weeks in intensive care. At this very difficult time and I was blown away by how kind everyone at the hospital was to our family. The doctors, nurses, receptionists, everyone. I thought, wow, this is how I want to be. They taught me about compassion and kindness. I realised this was sort of world I wanted to live in.
I can’t tell you how amazing it is to just be me. The more I get to know myself and act in alignment with who I really am, the happier I become. I recently realised I am actually a real introvert, one of the reason I enjoyed Lockdown. I was taught that I had to be bold, confident and speak up, not my true nature at all.
I just want to be the best version of me that I can be. I continue learn about myself everyday and aspire to be as kind and compassionate as I can.
Thank you for taking the time to ready my story. I want you to know I appreciate your support, it really means the world to me.