I have alluded to such bulldozing force of ‘self-sabotage’ in previous blog posts to spread mental health awareness and promote visibility of such a dilapidating illness. I now would like to share a poem I wrote 1 year and a half ago and the words flooded out of me. I have never shared this before because I truly feel like I am bearing my darkest moment of my soul for all to see. But, with all the support I have received from previous posts I feel like now is the right time to publish this poem for all to see, and hopefully people will begin to truly grasp the seriousness of mental health.


Nothing great lasts too long
Such things are tampered with
But by what you may ask?
Or maybe the more poignant question, by who?
Well that remains to be seen
Before I ever recognise any sign of fulfillment I am always greeted by the awareness of its absence
Dampened by the sodden tears of loneliness
Drowning in the she absence of joy

Maybe there is some truth with such wives tale
You never know what is good until it is gone
But what is the cause of such vanishing act of contentment

I have a persistent stomach churning itch of a monster lurking in the shadows
Again…only becoming aware of its actions after the fact
When the arms of havoc let emptiness embrace me
Gaining a tight suffocating grasp upon ME…the real me
Is this monster the cause of such depression?
Like an old friend it greets me with a certain familiarity
A friend it is not
As with is it, it brings unerring unpleasantness
And unwelcome attendance

With one set in stone intention
To break the status quo and sabotage
Sabotage any flickering light of hope
Sabotage any chance of redemption
Sabotage any chance of recovery
And finally sabotage any chance of peace my soul is yearning to find

It’s come the time where this unrelenting sabotage has caused me to feel an unbridgeable void to happiness
An unbridgeable void to belonging
An unbridgeable void to the old me, the best version of me

I crave to unmask such monster
Expose the true agent to this devastating sickness
However it clings to me
Torments me
Controls me
Possesses me
And inconceivably and senselessly crushes my soul

What is left is I in anguish
I in irreparable despair
I in unimaginable rage
Despite all that is left it is the monster whom is responsible for the actions of unrelenting disparity and sabotage
So why is it I who is left with a lump in my throat
Tears gushing down my face
Drowning me with guilt

Because after such devastation every time the monster is unmasked
All I can see is a reflection
Adjoined with the realization that I am the monster of my own demons
I am the chains that bind me to this sickness
I am the master and deceiver of such demoralizing soul sucking self-sabotage
I find it unstoppable but unbearable
Fully aware of its deafening presence yet having no choice but to obey the laws of physics
Move out of the unstoppable forces way because that’s what makes it an unstoppable force

I am, however, aware that I have given it omnipotence in my mind
The destroyer or savior of my life is embedded in my mind
To save my soul I must save my mind
I must abuse this self-sabotage how it did to me
Bludgeon this self-sabotage how it did to me
Asphyxiate this self-sabotage how it did to me
Erase this self-sabotage how it did to me

All I have to remember is that my mind is my phoenix
My sickness is my flames
And one day I shall rise

Finding The Will To Carry On

Sometimes life can really feel like you are grasping at straws, never coming up trumps; or even grasping at the mere illusion of straws – false opportunities, any tiny sense of fulfillment to make all the ‘BS’ seem bearable. This is only a mere surface scratch to relate to how I have felt in the past and often felt completely lost in a sense of despair and drifting. I don’t know if everyone experiences the same struggles and manage to ‘fake it’ much more convincingly. But, to me, it felt like I was alone. Failing at life. Disappointing everyone and ruining everything. This feeling and almost deep-rooted belief became second nature, an embedded act of cynical thinking if you will. And so often I found myself falling, and falling, and falling; further and further into the dark, never-ending abyss of depression and scarring of my soul – my intrinsic being – with an emotional crater, creating a seemingly unbridgeable void to my former self. Honestly, looking back I have to count myself lucky. Lucky that I never let go of the most minuscule sense of hope. Lucky, that I battled against my demons. And most of all, lucky that I repeatedly found the will to carry on and stand back up fighting every time I knocked myself down.

For years, I found myself dumbfounded and completely puzzled at what destroying force could possibly have the heart – thereby lack of – to cause such consuming, callous thoughts. I realize for many, the source of depression and mental health struggles can be the result of a capitulation of multiple events, circumstances and issues. But for me, everything boiled down to one thing. Underneath my own reckless, demonizing and persecuting mask of emotional trauma was me. All my pain, suffering, self-hating and down right self-torturing was all from my own internalized shame of self-identification and latent self-worth. Years of self-hating and shaming myself due to my sexuality and own image; years of self-abusing verbally and physically due to my own inability to accept myself and have trust in my peers, my family and wider society to welcome me in; and years of mental scrutiny and distress due to my own self-defense mechanism being in overdrive. I worried about my worries, almost a sense of heightened anxiety, described by doctors as severe anxiety. Such feeling, I fear I could never truly bottle the essence of sheer panic in overdrive. I can only attempt to reach a mere abstract comparison from my own experience of anxiety and the mental toll it takes out of you; triggering depression and ultimately, for me, mental relapse.

The feel of being a claustrophobic asthmatic in a tightly enclosed space. The walls pushing in, closer and closer. Squeezing each last molecule of oxygen out of your lungs and the tightening of your chest begins. A haunted hand grappled around your throat. Every sense draining out of your body, until you feel like an empty vessel of nothingness, only harboring one thing – panic, terror and pure unfiltered anxiety. That feeling of confinement, asphyxiation and complete hopelessness is what drives the monster; is what tightens the noose around your neck and amplifies the unwanted benefactor, which for me was depression of the darkest of sorts.

As highlighted in previous posts, I am still recovering and still receiving treatment and on medication. But, I can truly say that I am not the blank canvass I used to envisage, I am a fully grown independent woman, living with my beloved girlfriend and studying a university course I am fully invested in. So what changed? How did I find that will to carry on? I’d like to think in some enchanted, fairy-tale mythological sense that it found me but in truth I don’t think I ever truly let go of hope. Buried deep it may have been but I protected it, I nurtured it and when the time eventually came I trusted myself in it. For me the magic in that moment, when you pick yourself up in midst of such a depressive cyclone of raw emotional release, you don’t give up, you stand back up to take another hit , to go the full 10 rounds and escape the KO. That magic, shows you that you believe in yourself, have faith in yourself and one day will return to yourself.

I cannot emphasize enough how often I wanted to throw in the towel, let down my defences and take that final KO punch. However, that is not what happened. Call it persistence, call it inner strength, or even call it a miracle; I never let go and neither should you. Believe me when I say, the hardest thing to do is to keep on standing, keeping on fighting and to keep on believing. Once, you accomplish that, you can do whatever you set your mind to. So, ultimately, it’s not about finding that will to carry on but instead, always holding onto it because deep down you hold the keys to your own power, your own tenacity, you own dedication, every little attribute that protects that fostering of hope and manufactures the will to fight.

Please know that you are not alone. Keep on fighting, Keep on willing. Keep on surviving.

Lost…A Whirlwind of Emotion

Staring into the dark abyss of my crippled soul, my smoldering fears and quivering sense of insecurity on a heart numbing winters night when I was 18; Heather was obsolete, Heather was crushed and Heather was utterly decimated. Yet even in such harrowing moments of crippling depression; 6 months before my deafening call for help, I found the most minuscule fringes of hope to cling too in the most hidden crevices of my soul, and I never let go.

In despair, blubbering through the pain of destruction and depression, having recently dropped out of uni and feeling at a complete loss for direction, I felt a need, a calling to put what I was feeling into words. Part of me just knew one day, I would have the courage to share my story and let people gain a glimpse of my soul at its darkest, most vulnerable and menacing points insecurity. Words poured onto the page in unison with the cascade of tears streaming down my distraught face. Now, I am not a poet, but in my unapologetically raw display of emotion, it was a poem that took shape on the page and it is that poem which I would like to share with you today.

In honor of this raw show of emotion, I have kept my blog completely raw. Just me, you and the words between us. So here it is…

 Lost...A Whirlwind of Emotion 

Thoughts running
Mind numb
All these feelings, yet no answer to one
Head spinning
Still alert
So here I lay, bound to my sorrows unable to sleep
Feeling troubled yet no sense of urgency
Drifting through each day
No sense of purpose
Drifting through each day
No imminent new leaf
Wish I could help myself
But no sense of relief
Urgency is needed to find a new start
But still helpless here I lay, wishing upon a star
Drowning in thoughts
Persisting demons in my brain
Creating harrowing confusion
Laying here lost, I wish they could be tamed
Worries swallowing me whole
Creating multiple scars
These will heal in time
But for now, the anxiety continues to creep forward
Closer and closer it comes
So here I lay twisting and turning, trying desperately to get to sleep

But the deafening silence gives it a stage
It’s unforgiving face emerging from the shadows
Here it is now breathing down my neck
Possessing me
Controlling me
Consuming me
Hollering in disrespect

 Forcing me into the shadows away from the light
Desperate now here I lay
All that is left is hope and faith to pull me out from the dark
The little I have left is hidden
From those demons who have me scared
But sacrifice it to those ghastly ghouls I daren’t
It will prove useful one day and they will be shown dirt
So here I lay helpless wishing for many things
Above all is to end the hurt
All I can hope for are answers
To find a map to this maze
A compass to guide
Put a stop to the dead ends
The drifting
The doubters
A belonging is needed
Ambition will follow
So here I lay sending this wish
Hoping to find myself in this deep abyss
That’s if I ever get to sleep
To feel the relief of burden
To break free from the chains that bind me to this sickness
Escape this unsure me and cast a new part
Jump full force into the next chapter
And see all my folk proud at heart
Yet troubled still here I lay
With no obvious plan of action
Yearning for that light
That inspiration
The one we are all promised we will find
So here I lay at night
Waiting for the drifting to stop
And see my dreams ignite

I would just really like to take this opportunity to hit home that is what all you need to do is simple. Never give up and you will be ok. I was. I am Heather, who are you?