MENTAL MUTHA MEETS LORNA HAYWARD
MENTAL MUTHA MEETS LORNA HAYWARD
Are you a mental Mum or a Mum that’s mental?
Defo a bitta both. Motherhood didn’t make me mental, however it’s certainly exasperated some of my battles that’s for sure.
What do you do when you feel overwhelmed? Meditate? Talk? Hide?
I’m a talker. Sometimes I talk too much, overshare and gather way too many opinions which crowd my already manic mind. Equally, sharing really is caring for me - and being open and honest with those close to me is incredibly important. Likewise, a pedicure sometimes hits the spot. In fact my husband asked me yesterday (after I took myself off down to the local £20 pedi palace for an hour) why I like them so much. And it’s this – one hour (from getting in the car on my own, having me trotters scraped and preened to getting home) of sitting down, nonchalantly starring at Zayn / Little mix on MTV, reading trashy mags and generally shutting off. Also my feet look cracking after. A bit of selfcare goes a long way for me.
Do you discuss your mental health with your mum mates?
It’s been hard not to since I wrote all about it on my blog for all to see! Equally, it has started some great conversations whereby my mum mates feel they can be much more open and honest about how they’re feeling with me and we spend less time skirting around the usual ‘How are you?’ ‘Yeah I’m ok’ – we actually talk more.
How do you tackle mental health chats with your kid’s?
I’m not sure I do to be honest. For them, at the moment as they’re so little it’s very black and white. I talk openly and honestly about feelings and how it’s ok to have a cry if you’re feeling happy or sad, and how nice actions and words – big or small can make someone feel really happy. Similarly, there are moments when I’m faced with what to say when my eldest sees me taking my medication and asks me what it’s for. I’m honest – I say it’s for my head to make me feel a little better, like the vitamins we all take as a family in the morning.
Who helps you in the dark? (In your pits, your mental rock bottom - who is your hero?)
I’m not sure that lies with one person. They say it takes a village right? For me that’s true. I know who I would go to, for absolutely no judgement and complete support and that would be my best friend of 33 years, Jo. She’s seen the best, the worse and the damn right ugliest of me. Equally, my therapist – there is something about someone being there for you, and wholeheartedly hearing you. I feel very safe with her and that’s hugely important to me.
What helps you in the light? (Meditation? Procrastination? Perspiration? People?)
Music, people, and my little family. I’m a busy girl – I don’t need to be as busy as I am, I’m work in progress at trying to slow down the frenzied pace in which I live (in hope it relieves some of the manicness of my mind) but I love noise, gaggles of good people and music.
Music plays a huge part in my relationship with Jamie, and a massive part in our family life. Whether it’s belting out a tune in the car, having Jamie DJ at my mums nights, a little en masse dance in the kitchen to kick start the morning or standing in a field with Jamie (one of my happiest places) listening to live music – it’s incredibly emotive for me.
Is it hard to talk about your mental health? (Doesn't mean on Instagram necessarily, but do you feel the stigma is lifting and do you feel safe to speak your mind, even if it is possibly 'mental'?)
It used to be, yes. Until I wrote my blog post ‘White flag’ I had never really talked about it. Not openly and absolutely not written down, for all to see – my boss at the time, my extending family, the school mums etc. But lifting the lid on my battles and writing them down was hugely cathartic to me. It still is. Also, it’s made me so much more aware of checking in with others. Making sure that I don’t move on too quickly when someone says ‘yeah I’m ok’ but doesn’t look it. I feel very sensitive and protective to making sure my friends feel supported by me.
Where’s your head at? (Right here in this moment, today)
Ha. Well, today’s not been the bestest starts. Sometimes, when I think about trying to kick off the day with a positive start, it actually does the opposite for me as I’m over thinking and putting pressure on myself, which I do 24/7 as it is.
All in all though? Good. I’m work in progress but I’m making progress – so, for me that’s enough. I’m working towards coming off my medication (there is no end date in sight, no huge plan in place) but alongside some new therapy which I’m having weekly I feel positive about moving forward to feeling a little lighter mentally.
Soft Play or Rehab?
Rehab after soft play? Listen soft play is a given, but if they sell prosecco by the glass I’ll take soft play.
Jacobs Creek or a Jacobs Cracker?
Jacobs creek erry damn day.
Nut Job or Nut Allergy?
No nut allergy here. I’m currently addicted to crunchy peanut butter on toast. It’s actually quite out of control.
Self Care or Self Sabotage?
I’m a connoisseur at self-sabotage. But as I said, I’m work in progress and therefore self-care is steadfastly becoming a priority.
Journal or jog?
Journal Journal Journal. Writing is my release. I don’t do it enough. When I started my blog I could honestly write for hours and feel myself getting lighter as I typed. I really want to be the woman that jogs off her anxiety, I really do. Alas, it just doesn’t work for me n my big bones.
Ask for help or happy to hermit?
Ask for help. Always.
If you'd like to read more conversations with Mental Muthas, click HERE.
Women talking unashamedly about their mental health and parenting innit.