MENTAL MUTHA MEETS MUMMY IN TRAINING
MENTAL MUTHA MEETS MUMMY IN TRAINING
Are you a mental Mum or a Mum that’s mental?
I am definitely a mental Mum. It is something that has taken me a long time to accept though. I have suffered with anxiety pretty much since I gave birth and for the first couple of years I felt like a full on failure. Now, however I’m okay with it. I’m still a good Mum. Yes, I suffer with my mental health. Yes, things are sometimes harder than I’d like and yes, anxiety is crap. But my kids accept me for me so I have learnt to do accept me for me too.
What do you do when you feel overwhelmed? Meditate? Talk? Hide?
What I want to do is hide. I go into hermit mode and would quite happily stay under the covers until it passes. What I actually do now is write. As a blogger it’s my go to activity when anything happens whether it is good or bad. I have lots of drafts sat on computer which will probably never be shared but writing my feelings out helps a lot even if I never look back at that post again.
Do you discuss your mental health with your mum mates?
Yes. I spent a long time hiding it and then I entered into the online world of Mums talking about their mental health and realised if so many of those ladies were struggling then chances were some of my friends were too. It’s amazing how many people will just respond with ‘me too’ when I mention my anxiety. Sometimes just telling my friends I am feeling anxious can take the edge off it; knowing I am not alone in my own head really helps.
How do you tackle mental health chats with your kid’s?
My kids are 5 and nearly 2 so it has only been recently that I have had to really think about this. After a bad day of me crying at everything I decided to sit down with my 5 year old son and discuss it properly. We talked about how sometimes my head is poorly and how it was a bit like when he had a poorly leg. He took it all in his stride as always and now if I say I’m not feeling very well he asks me if my head is a bit poorly.
Who helps you in the dark? (In your pits, your mental rock bottom - who is your hero?)
My family, my bestie and my friends are my heroes. The people that didn’t bail when I wasn’t very loveable. The ones that stayed around despite me pushing them away. The people that don’t claim to understand it but listen anyway are the best kind. However, sometimes it’s me. I have to help myself when I’m in the dark; I have to be the one to ultimately pull myself out of it.
What helps you in the light? (Meditation? Procrastination? Perspiration? People?)
I think the main thing that helps me on the good days is staying busy and staying in routine. I love structure and that really helps my mental health stay relatively healthy. My anxiety is often focused on the ‘what if’ thinking; I am always thinking the worst. Knowing what is coming next through the day really helps. I like a plan!
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'?)
I used to find it so hard. Anxiety can be so isolating and so very lonely. I remember standing in my kitchen and breaking down in front of my friends and saying it all out loud for the first time and it was painful, really painful but since then I have always talked about it. I write about it on my blog and on my Instagram; I find it a huge relief to just get it out there and frankly, I don’t care who reads it now. When I get a private message or a comment to say that someone else is feeling the same I think it does a lot for and them. No one should ever have to feel alone.
Where’s your head at? (Right here in this moment, today)
Right now, I’m good. Tomorrow I might not be but I’m okay with that.
Soft Play or Rehab?
Definitely rehab. Soft play is…well, it’s soft play isn’t it?!
Jacobs Creek or a Jacobs Cracker?
I’m a Jacobs cracker kind of girl. I stopped drinking to help my anxiety so the Jacobs Creek isn’t for me anymore which on a summers evening does make me a bit sad!
Nut Job or Nut Allergy?
The people around me would say I’m a nut job and that’s nothing to do with my anxiety, I’m just a bit strange!
Self Care or Self Sabotage?
Self care is the most important thing we can do. It’s so easy to put yourself at the bottom of the pile, especially as a Mother but if you’re not firing on all cylinders then you can’t be the best you can be for everyone else.
Journal or jog?
Always journal for me. Literally removing stuff from my brain and putting it on paper helps a lot. I also will never jog. Ever.
Ask for help or happy to hermit?
As much I would be so happy to hermit, it’s not the right thing for me so when the proverbial hits the fan it’s time to ask for help.
Mummy in Training – www.mummyintraining.co.uk
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If you'd like to read more conversations with Mental Muthas, click HERE.
Women talking unashamedly about their mental health and parenting innit.