Back in 2015, I found myself at an all time low. The story is long and heavily detailed so I'm hoping to give you an in a nutshell version so as not to labour the point. In the space of 6 months, just 6 months, I had sold my home, lost my prospective new home, put all of our belongings into storage, moved in with family members (which was very cramped with 5 of us in two rooms), had a brand new baby on christmas eve (who wouldn't feed properly or sleep for that matter!), put my eldest daughter through an operation and had her subsequent recovery to deal with, had my cat put to sleep due to a fox, and had to buy a new car. Phew!
My life during this 6 months period was fraught with stress, tension, anxiety and fear. Fear that I wasn't ever going to find a new home, fear that I couldn't look after my family properly, fear that I was a total failure. I was tired, suffering from postnatal blues, mentally drained and unable to find any time to look after myself.
We eventually found a new house, one that was vacant and the seller wanted a quick sale. We completed the sale with 14 days left of our mortgage offer. It wasn't ideal, it didn't tick all of the boxes, but it was our home, and I looked forward to moving in. I thought that when I got settled in my new home, I would feel better. But I didn't. My initial happiness started to fade away as I realised that life was still feeling hard, I was still sleeping badly, the 80 mile round trips each day to the children's three schools were draining me and I was struggling to pay the new bills. I had convinced myself throughout the last six months that happiness would be delivered to me when I was in my new house, then life could begin again. But that wasn't the reality. I realised with a thud that happiness certainly does not come from external sources.
I had practised being miserable for so many months, that I was now really good at it. My sadness was habitual and had become my new comfort blanket. My hair started to fall out, my eyebrows thinned and then I really came to see just how damaging these thought cycles were. They were now having an effect on my body. Was I depressed? Surely not! I hated to label myself as anything. I hated the thought of having to go to a doctor, to admit to my feelings, and then to rely on antidepressants, which is all they would probably prescribe if I did pluck up the courage to go. No, I didnt want to go down that route. I decided to try some self-help.