Losing my sanity.

I am having a crisis, one that does not appear to be ending, and while I mope and cry I am also getting on with my life as best as I can. But it is hard isn’t it? When you feel like there is nowhere else to turn.

My Nan died two weeks ago, and while I cried at first and do sporadically, I feel like I am suppressing the truth as it cannot be so…the funeral is next week and yet nothing seems to be sinking in.

Then we have the problem with my rental property. Yet again a rat has died somewhere in the roof in our extension. Of course, perhaps if my landlord had arranged for the ceiling to be plastered after last time the smell would not be so horrendous but then again, maybe not!! So I wake up daily, and return home daily to all kinds of unwelcome guests in the bathroom, that my partner and I seem to “get rid of” only to find some more guests the next hour. We cannot use the shower, we use the bath upstairs daily costing us more time and money on the gas meter. The kitchen and utility room smells like a dead animal…but it’s OK, it’ll get sorted eventually after weeks off cleaning up and covering our noses. Meanwhile I cannot count the amount of times I have been sick, we have both started feeling really ill again. But we have not got enough money to move, after all we need a deposit! The builders are coming tomorrow to take down the ceiling and have another look, but it sounds as though it’ll just keep getting worse. Plus when I return from work I dread to think the state the bathroom will be in again.

If this were my house I would have paid for someone to sort this issue, when it was first reported nearly two years ago, but it isn’t. I feel like I have no one to talk to apart from my partner anymore, as why would anyone want to listen to my depressing problems? Surely it isn’t fair that we have to keep bleaching the floor, disposing of maggots and cleaning rat pee…

I just want to mourn for my nan, catch up my uni work and be happy …but my head is filled with so much I cannot seem to do anything.

Someone please rescue me!


Anxiety and Avoidance- Christmas Blues

It isn’t my desire tonight to have a self-deprecating blog post, but I feel alone and sad…much like a lot of people I’m sure, but I feel like I need to vent somewhere just for a moment – ultimately I’ll regret my post in the morning but hey ho.

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I can find this time of year pretty hard. I enjoy Christmas, admittedly I get a small break from work which is fantastic, but I love the feel of general happiness, being around those I care about and sitting back, relaxing and watching some crummy ol’ Christmas movies…I really do.

But for someone who struggles with general anxiety and occasional panic attacks, I also wish I could hibernate until it is all over. This September, essentially three months before Christmas I was already worrying and obsessing about the work Christmas party. Therefore I didn’t go…again, as usual. I avoided this like I avoid everything because I am too scared of risking “it”, of having a panic attack and ruining it for everyone and embarrassing myself again. Oh how I would love to have a good laugh, mix a little and enjoy myself. Hell, I’d even have a glass of wine or two..and I rarely drink but I want to be that person, not this shadow of a girl I have become.

So I decided long before to visit Sheffield instead and also my friend in Wakefield. Catching a train journey long distance seemed a less scary prospect than going to a work Christmas party, crazy isn’t it? I was all set to go, toothbrush, tickets, journey planner, then I wake up the morning before ill, ill enough to stop me from going. I know this wasn’t the anxiety stopping me as I booked the train tickets already and they were nonrefundable. Last time I forced myself into this situation I did it and had a great time…but this time I felt too rough and now also despise myself for that…letting people down yet again.

So here I am, deluding myself that one day I will be able to climb over this bridge I have chained myself beneath and live a little, not be afraid. To not let my unfathomable emotions think I’ll…

  • Be sick at the dinner table due to anxiety and hyperventilating.
  • Have a panic attack and end up being the unfortunate centre of attention.
  • Being out of place / being the burden / being pitied.
  • Be ashamed of my inability to do basic things…go out for a meal and have a good time.

My partner is currently at his works Christmas party, having a wonderful time no doubt and here I am alone and dwelling about my dissatisfaction over my life. I sound really pathetic I know. But I don’t want to be the one who sits home alone anymore. I hope someone out there understands me and I am not alone in this anxiety madness nightmare.

The Road To Becoming A Survivor by River Hayden

“A touching autobiography written by River Hayden, as she shares with us her tragic story of sexual abuse, neglect, self harming and depression. An inspirational and honest account of her life and her struggle to overcome being a victim and becoming a survivor. 4.5/5”


Book overview and Review:

Reading River Hayden’s autobiography helps open our eyes to many aspects of life which we all hope to never experience. I think if given the choice out of a selection of autobiographies ranging from individuals aged 18 to 80; the probability of selecting a book written by a person who is much older than Hayden may be more common a choice, as some will presume what life experiences could a 25 year old young woman possibly have? I can confirm that this preconceived idea is not an accurate presumption; Hayden has clearly enlightened a few readers here, if ever they needed enlightenment. Tragic and moving life experiences are not “saved” for those with more life experience and are commonly thrust upon us at an age where we do not necessarily understand the difference between right and wrong.

Hayden has bravely and movingly recounted true events from her personal history which has help shaped and unfortunately haunted her throughout her life. From experiencing sexual abuse at the hands of family members closest to her, and later again in life we can only begin to imagine what she has been through. We step inside Hayden’s world and stand in her shoes, and see the events told from her perspective.

I think that River Hayden believes that by typing out her innermost thoughts, feelings and memories she will be able to release some of the pent up emotion that she has held back all these years. She will be able to help and inspire others who have experienced similar trauma and face her fears straight on, as the title of the book suggests, Hayden is on “The Road to Becoming a Survivor.”

I found this book inspirational and very interesting, I feel extremely lucky to have not experienced the sexual abuse that River Hayden and many, many others before and after her have lived through.

The fact that these events have also taken place over a number of years, a huge portion of Hayden’s life make the story even more harrowing. It is interesting to read Hayden’s personal retrospective view on the abuse she suffered, and her attempt to understand why the individuals did what they did and despite everything she has tried to build bridges with two of them. It is an impossible circumstance to pass judgement on, part of me was thinking, “Why are you trying to build bridges with people that have abused you in this way?”, but the other side of me was trying to understand and see how she feels. She tries to see the good in everyone while handling the unforgiveable.

The book covers not only her sexual abuse but the loss of her best friend due to cancer which I felt compelled to mention as it was so sad and touching. We also see a brief insight into the lives that have also shaped her story and helped her to survive.

 The beginning of the book is slow paced as Hayden struggles to reveal her trauma and spends quite a while expressing her fears about sharing the story due to the implications of 1) Revealing what close family members have done to her, 2) Her own personal ability to cope with opening up these raw wounds for the world to see. I believe you will require patience and compassion to bare with Hayden as she repeats her concerns, as she says it is a while before she gets to anything “juicy”,  but her story is an eye opener and I am pleased that I had the opportunity to read this book. I sincerely hope that River Hayden will find peace and enjoyment in her life and that she pursues her dreams without letting the past hold her back. It was insightful to partially walk in her footsteps, I will never be able to comprehend how people can inflict such evil deeds on others.

 I recommend this autobiography to all and I hope this helps connect with other individuals that have suffered with their own abuse, as you are not alone.

You can download the EBook via Amazon USA. Please note the book is currently going through a publisher so please be conscious that any spelling/grammatical errors will be corrected as soon as possible.


My Old Friend, Mr Anxiety.

Dear Old Friend, we’ve known each other throughout my entire existence, almost everyday you greet me as I leave my home, my sanctuary, the only place you rarely enter.

Dear Old Friend, you have accompanied me through every chapter of my life, your guidance has helped me to overcome my burdens, grief and self doubt. Your strenuous efforts to warn me of any dangers ahead have protected me and kept me safe.

Dear Old Friend, I sometimes feel as helpful as you can be, I cannot keep you within my control. It does not feel normal to shake and feel nauseous when sometimes you visit, however you say to accept your guidance with open arms, I feel lost and utterly confused.

Dear Old Friend, tonight we dined in a restaurant full of co-workers and friends. You came along for the journey and chatted away until we reached the table. I felt you squeeze the energy from my body, the breath from my lungs, why oh why did you do that?

Dear Old Friend, you’re squeezing me too tight and I can scarcely breathe, my voice is just a whisper. That nauseous feeling has greeted me once again and it was too late, I was sick at the table.

Dear Old Friend, as terrified as I am to face you with your darkened veil, your persistent presence is no longer welcome and I demand that you leave! I feel you smoother me as I try to tip toe from my home. I feel your unearthly control dominating me, strangling me, as my attempts to overcome you repeatedly fail in catastrophic ways. My body is shaking uncontrollably. Please leave and never return.

Dear Old Friend, why do you continue to pursue your relentless campaign to revoke any and all social outings I am invited to? Why must your selfish lingering spoil any chance I have of overcoming my hellish nightmares and infuriating fears.

Dear Old Friend, it pains me to admit that I once looked to you as a source of great comfort and release, when times were so difficult and things were tragically getting worse.I turned to you when I was engulfed in a deep pit of tangled anguish and despair, but you betrayed me in the most conniving and unsuspecting way.

Dear Old Friend, every corner I now turn is full of dead ends and darkened rooms. Padlocked doors greet me as I try to regain control, I find myself avoiding the things I once enjoyed. My shackles feel too overwhelming to fight you today. My heart is pounding and my peripheral vision sees shadows where monsters lurk. I envy your sickening confidence, your determination and devotion to my suffering.

Dear Anxiety, I’m going to face you someday, I am gradually but surely going to regain my control over you.

I’ll remove your veil and stare into your dark and hollow eyes. I’ll remove my chains and walk into where the shadows hide.

I’d take pleasure in your welcome demise, however you may stick around, for in time I may require use of you once again. But never again will you use me.