Apprehension is something we all feel from time to time and is completely natural and human. Usually though we are only apprehensive about stuff that really matters to us. Things that we’re not bothered about we don’t tend to feel apprehension about. Instead we feel the murkiness and greyness of nothing; indifference basically.
Nothing that is happening in my life as it’s unfolding am I indifferent about or uninterested in. I have purposefully and consciously attracted things into my life and people and situations that matter.
What else is the point of life and living? If we are not drawing in what matters in our heart and soul. We are just existing then, and not living.
Living is very different to existing. Existing (not living), isn’t far off dying in my book. It is breathing and eating and drinking and going about our business without caring about anything or anyone.
I care LOTS about lots of things.
I care that my goals are showing promising signs of being fulfilled (many of them anyway). I am more than chuffed with all the progress I’ve made so far this year :) I’ve got over my mental health blip and now I can move forward without that excess life baggage dragging me down. It feels great to be where I am now-but I am apprehensive, because I don’t like to imagine losing what I’m working hard for.
There is no reason why I should lose any of my gains. No objective reason at all. My apprehension about losing it and foregoing my progress only reflects my humanness and natural frailty as a sensitive soul who battles with her mental health daily.
Lately life has felt too good to be true, but that isn’t objectively because it is too good to be true. In reality, my life just isn’t as relentlessly difficult and bad anymore as it was, and the strangeness of that lack of struggle is as unnerving as it is nice.
I’m apprehensive about the blog going out on Tuesday. This is the third ‘Mind’ mental health blog that I’ve written now for the national charity. The first time I buzzed for a week! It was a happy inspiring positive blog that attracted lovely supportive comments. The second one was more controversial in content so attracted tons of empathic support, as well as a few feathers getting ruffled. It was therefore a bit less enjoyable to put out there and a tad more threatening.
This third post I’ve written is challenging in a different way. It isn’t inspiring like the first. It isn’t controversial like the second. It is instead a painfully sad one that I believe a lot of people will relate to. I anticipate that it will touch nerves and prompt a bit of an outpouring of pain in the comments section. I wanted this piece to hurt when you read it, and I think it does do just that. It hurts me when I read it back afterwards anyway. I wanted to explain how I feel, and also do justice to how I believe many of us who live with mental health conditions feel a lot of the time.
As a writer, when you put your words out there for public dissection to larger audiences it genuinely does physically hurt sometimes! My heart aches. My muscles feel tense. My face grimaces and crumples up. I hide my flushed face with my hands and screw up my eyes to keep myself safe and protected and in the dark. It is ridiculous to imagine me doing that (as a mental picture in your head) but it really does happen when a post on mine goes out on Mind’s social media channels! I don’t know what the readership is or how many people follow the UK charity on Twitter or Facebook. But I know it is tons more reading than Summer Starts to Shine gets, and that feels both exciting and brilliant and also exposing and nerve wracking. This is because I know what people on Facebook are like…..they can be very opinionated and sometimes even vicious, not understanding how they might be hurting the writer. If people are mean to me online it’s hard to stomach. Most people are not mean though, and most people take the view that if they don’t have anything nice to say then they won’t say anything at all (which, believe me, I appreciate).
Lots of people on social media attack writers. I have even privately thought bad things about other writers myself, but the difference is, I won’t say to that person “I think your blog/article is a load of shit” because that just isn’t me. I’m usually honest, but I don’t believe in being nasty under the guise of ‘honesty’, and think that makes your nastiness socially acceptable. It isn’t ok to be nasty, but still people are.
If only writers could be assured that people would like what they publish, there would be lots more writers publishing their work! With mental health bloggers specifically, it is a whole different level of exposure and potential pain that you are opening up by sharing in an intimate way how your feel in all the underneath layers of you. Usually people don’t see what’s emotionally underneath. They judge us based on what we present to them on the surface layers. But if you share on a national platform for a major charity about your mental health, that is one of the most personal things you could probably do.
I am going to be letting everyone see what’s underneath on Tuesday. I am scared! It is a vulnerable post. Shall I start hiding already?!! I feel like hiding.
But for all my fears about it and vulnerability and insecurity, I will not be emailing the media team saying hold fire, don’t publish. I LOVE to do this kind of stuff, despite the fear. I feel the fear and I do it anyway :) And I will keep putting my writing out there even if I have to hide behind cushions for 48 hours or so afterwards :P It’s more than worth it, and writing is worth it, and complimentary comments you get make writing LUSH. This is why….(profound bit coming up).
I’m so glad that I can write. I’m glad I have this skill. I can touch people without ever meeting them. I can connect with their heart and spark up conversations with their souls. I can encourage people to reflect and to learn and to process and to grow. I can change the slants on how people think. I can open the windows in people’s minds which means their skin is met with the incoming breeze of clarity. I can clean up what was once messy. I can make someone exhale a breath in satisfaction because they’ve just gained an insight that they would only have obtained by reading ‘that’ sentence that I just wrote there. I can divert someone away from their own head for a minute or two and invite you be a visitor to mine. I will willingly share my mind and my heart and my soul, pouring it out onto the blank canvas, and I say to you ‘for the few minutes it takes to read these words, you can have me. I am yours, and if you like what you read you can have me for keeps. Every time you want to feel understood, cared for, or reminded of something important, you can re-read that paragraph and you can feel what you felt just now, again and again; the message crystallising and sinking in more and more with every read.’
That is what I can give you by writing, and what so many writers give to their readers day in day out.
Am extrovert is good for a party. An introverted writer is FOR LIFE.
Some passages I have read have stayed with me for years and years, and even helped keep me alive in some cases.
I hope that one day I write something that is that special. I may not ever know what effect I’ve had on you, but I hope that one day my writing does that. I hope that you’re out there and I hope you appreciate what I’m doing in sharing myself with you, via my words.
I am scared, but I’ll be OK. Even if some people leave nasty comments I will turn my mind instead to those people who I hope will be silently helped by my intimate emotional sharing of myself.
It’ll take more than a bit of apprehension for me to stop writing.
But I do get through many cushions :P