‘Just because I look fine on the outside, doesn’t mean i’m not in pain in the inside’.

Last week I didn’t manage to blog, partly because I was so tired and again my moods have been erratic. People who have spoken to me in the past few weeks have picked up on my behaviors. To look at me I seem fine, but deep down I’ve been feeling low. My Mum and stepdad noticed and asked what was wrong with me, and I genuinely couldn’t answer them because I didn’t know why I felt like this. I had days last week where I didn’t want to speak to anyone at all. People commented saying ‘you were OK last week’, or ‘your very different today’, one even commenting ‘you are like two different people’. The truth is the shift in my moods varies, with no common patterns occurring. I appear to be feeling very high and full of energy, not requiring sleep, then within a few days I am completely low again, sleeping all day, skipping meals, and have 0 interest in doing things that I normally love doing. In the high periods I tend to have racing thoughts, I talk very quickly and get easily distracted, also I try to carry out multiple tasks at once.

This is the time where I now believe my medication isn’t working at all, I intend to go back to my GP to discuss other options. I would greatly appreciate any comments if anyone has experienced anything similar and can give me any advice or tips.

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‘It is not how much you do, but how much love you put in the doing’.

Good news from kirstythought…

I have been offered my first job as a nurse! The main reason I went into children’s nursing was to become a neonatal nurse. One of my sisters was born early and I remember at the age of 12 watching the neonatal nurses care for my sister, I was fascinated, I would stay and watch all injections, and blood tests. The first time I held my sister was something I will always remember, this tiny, fragile baby in my arms, I was scared to move. I went to school and took in a picture of her explaining that this was my new sister and she weighed half a bag of sugar. I would visit with my nan and granddad most of the time as my dad would be there frequently, because my stepmom was very poorly. I would draw my sister pictures, and hold her hand through the incubator. I remember all this so clearly… And now I have been offered my first job as a neonatal nurse! I’m so proud, after my nervous breakdown last year I never saw the end to my degree.

Returning back to the neonatal unit to finish placement was a turn around for me, I worked hard, learnt lots and cared for my own babies on the majority of the shifts. I now fully understand how stressful and upsetting it is for new parents to have a baby on the neonatal unit, the baby gets taken away immediately and then the first time parents visit the unit can shock them, due to the various machines bleeping and wires attached to their baby. I always understand the importance of introducing myself to parents, then will show them around the ward, make them aware of contact numbers and any further support which they may require.

I believe that even as a 12 year old premmie sibling I could sense the stress and worry of having a baby so poorly, I remember the late nights spent at the hospital, the phone calls to the hospital to check she was ok and I even recall my sister being moved into the low dependency side of the unit, only to be moved back again after deteriorating so quickly. My memories have helped shape the neonatal nurse I will become, with my caring nature and warm approachable manner, I intend to help these babies recover and support parents all the way.

I’m glad and honoured to have been given this opportunity to work with my favourite people… Babies ๐Ÿ™‚

A few more points which remain important to me are..

  1. no amount of nurse training can teach you how to be a shoulder to cry on for a parent
  2. no amount of nurse training can teach you how to comfort a visiting sibling
  3. And no amount of nurse training can teach you how to cuddle a baby who’s Mum can’t be present

I will never forget that big journeys begin with small steps ๐Ÿ™‚

 

 

‘Keep your face towards the sun and you will never see the shadows’.

A small update on my week

This week has seen a rarity in the England, we have actually had some sunshine and hot weather!! I can honestly say I love the sun,ย  it lifts my mood and motivates me more. On the days we had good weather I fully made the most of it, I walked the dog lots, drove with the roof down in my car and actually wanted to socialize. Socializing can prove difficult for me at times, I get excited to make plans then last minute I end up cancelling due to my anxiety, genuinely because crowds of people causes me stress. This week I wanted to socialize on most days and did so with mainly family and I thoroughly enjoyed chatting and being quite a social butterfly.ย For the first time in ages I felt happy and confident, with not a single worry.

On one of the sunny days I went for a long walk around a park, I took a book with me and sat there for ages reading and just relaxing. I seemed more motivated this week than I have done in ages, I even dyed my own hair, which I kept putting off due to various excuses!!

My aim now is to try to maintain this positive attitude even on rainy and gloomy days, I’ve got so much done this week and believe that I should try to see the good in every day. Share with me how the sun helps your mood or uplifts you ๐Ÿ™‚

‘The best view comes after the hardest climb’.

A small update on me!!

This picture was taken in the first year of my nursing degree, and Saturday was last ever shift as a student nurse!! I am very proud now to have completely finished my children’s nursing degree, this has been a hard three years but I have now get there and have a good view of the future ahead of me.

Today I have been to University to take in all my assessment documents from the three years, this has felt like relief to have achieved so much, even when I didn’t think I would complete at all. I have got through this training by support from family and friends who I couldn’t thank enough for their support. I also have to say writing this blog has helped keep me focused and overcome issues that I did have, writing this blog as well as reading other blog posts has gave me clarification that even with anxiety you can still overcome challenges which will help shape your future. All the positive encouragement will now inspire me to find a job which I will continue to flourish in.

This is a gift from my Mum, a teddy made from my Uniform!!

‘I can shake off everything as I write, my sorrows disappear and my courage is reborn’. Anne Frank

This post is quite simply about why I chose to blog…

I have always enjoyed reading and writing, when I was younger I wrote stories all the time, I would spend hours creating characters and using my imagination to also create fairy tale scenarios. With age I wrote less but read more, I would read so many books and still do. My inspiration to blog came from my deteriorating mental health, although I have always been anxious with age it began to worsen. I struggled to find support, I felt isolated and my mind was racing all the time. Although family and friends have always been supportive I wished to seek guidance from people who had suffered the way I always have. Initially a magazine article opened my eyes to the amount of women who suffer, I steadily began to feel less alone. I then started to read mental health blogs which helped me understand my sometimes erratic behavior. I also found blogs useful for discovering tips that would help relax me.

I then decided that I would start my own blog to empower women to manage and cope with their mental health. I love inspirational quotes, so use these to inspire what I will write about. I also decided that I would review beauty products and discuss topics that women love. I started my blog, then due to another round of anxiety I went quiet, and have had repeated periods like this where I just couldn’t motivate myself to write. I wrote on holiday last year and that was a big turning point for me, it was the realization that I was in a relationship which was 1. not going anywhere and 2. was fueling my anxiety. Even still I tried to make it work but I knew in my mind what I had to do, although it was hard leaving my ex, it was a new start, a chance to find myself again. Writing also helped me understand my feelings, and actually led me to believe that no I’m not perfect but I didn’t deserve for someone to play on my weaknesses.

Through blogging I have been able to addressย my issues by writing about them and sharing my tips for relaxation. The more I blogged the more tips I found and carried out, I also discovered courage and strength in myself , which has helped me gain confidence. In blogging I have addressed some issues even involving my struggles with my degree, but I am glad I started to blog. As writing for me is easier than talking about problems, when I read my blog posts I honestly see how far I have come, my new found confidence and hopefully how I helped someone, somewhere.

 

I hope to inspire more people to engage with my blog and share any coping mechanisms on my blog that we could all try.

‘She believed she could.. so she did’..

It has took me a long time to get here and its been a rollercoaster of a journey.. but on Friday night I was signed off as a children’s nurse! I have finally got there after months of uncertainty I have done it. I still have 3 shifts to complete but the hard work is over as I have been signed off as a competent nurse. This is a proud moment for me as during second year I really hit rock bottom and third year hasn’t been a walk in the park either. Although in my final year I have learnt that sometimes I believe in myself, when I can do things in my own time and my own way. A lesson I will also take with me is to remember that every nurse has had to go through this learning journey and we should all support students as much as we can, this is something I intend to do. But for now i’m going to finish these last few shifts then decide where I want to work as a newly qualified children’s nurse. ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ“š๐Ÿฅ๐ŸŽ“

‘Focus on where you want to go, not on what you fear’. Anthony Robbins.

An update on kirstythought…

Unfortunately I’ve been quiet again lately. Due to being back on the neonatal unit and finishing my degree i’ve kept my head down. I have worked 13 hour shifts, nights and weekends, i’ve been tired but actually I am very nearly done. My health hasn’t been the best and in fact on one of my shifts I collapsed. I had a cold and haven’t been able to shift it. I had one day off placement and returned on the Thursday, I had breakfast that morning before my long shift, and felt ok. I was on delivery suite when I began to feel weak and dizzy, I alerted my mentor and explained that I was about to faint. I then woke up on the floor surrounded by midwives. My blood pressure and heart rate was quite low and I was sent to A and E who sent me home. I went back home and slept for hours I went to see my gp who informed me that it could have been my anxiety medication propanalol. I am now going to slowly be weaned off them, which fills me with fear, worry and further anxiety.

It would be nice to not have to take medication and feel relatively calm. This is now my aim.. I intend to find more ways I can learn to live with my anxiety without medication. I have been on this medication a long time so I know this will be quite a long road, but one in which i’m willing to take.

Hopefully i’ll soon be a qualified nurse and maybe be medication free within a few months! I know where I want to go and i’ll get there at my own pace ๐Ÿ˜Š