Happy Saturday, friends! Today is the last day of the Shattering Stigmas event and, one last time in case you missed it, Shattering Stigmas is an event that will take place from October 6th to October 20th here on Drizzle & Hurricane Books.
Three years ago, Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight launched the first Shattering Stigmas, a blogging event dedicated to posts about mental illness to address and challenge the stigmas against it. Through book reviews, discussion posts and lists, Shattering Stigmas has continued conversations around mental illness for the past three years.
You can also enter our INTERNATIONAL (Book Depository) giveaway! TWO winners will be able to win the Mental Health book of their choice at the end of this event. Don’t forget to ENTER HERE!
Today is a bit special : it is the end of the event and this post will therefore be divided in two parts : the actual very last post of the event and then me just being the big marshmallow that I am. Okay. Let’s do this !
Today I’m welcoming…. well, myself.
I’ll be completely honest with you. I did not plan on writing a blog post about mental health, my own experiences and I did not plan to share anything like that. I’m not the kind of person that shares a whole lot about myself and, unless you know me really well, which a very small amount of blogging friends can attest to, or unless you’re part of the big loves of my life and family well… I’m just not. Sharing. Stuff.
Yet, mental health is a topic that is very close to my heart and, personally, hit close to home, too. This is one of the main reasons why, this event mattered to me a whole lot. This is one of the reasons why I’m honored and thrilled to have hosted so many incredible blog posts and to have seen incredible blog posts on my amazing co-hosts blogs, too, on the topic.
Mental health matters. Mental health needs to be mentioned, recognized, right terminaisons need to be used and most of it all, mental health needs to matter. Because it does. It does for me, too.
Trigger warnings for this post: anxiety, panic attacks.
I don’t remember how it started and I don’t know if it will never end. I’ve always been an anxious kind of person, the kind of person that just can’t let her mind shut up, for one single second. The kind of person that feels like, no matter how hard I work, no matter how many time I spend, blogging, for instance, I will never be good enough or just do enough.
I know I’m a cheery-looking kind of person, especially online and on my blog. I’ve always been, and always try to stay within my image, and the best part of who I am, a marshmallow-y kind of person, loving to write endless comments, chatting with you all and always, always, always trying to be positive and put a smile on people’s faces.
This is who I am or, this is who I’m trying to be as best as I can, as often as I can, because it’s someone I like to be. But honestly, how much can you tell from a person on the other side of the world, on the other side of a computer screen?
No one can tell that I’ve been having some of the worst weeks of my life since the month started and I broke my feet. No one can tell that, since the month started, I went from crying three times a day to once a day, to now just letting the numb feeling wash over me once a day before it gets away, once again. This broken feet and life’s event has a way of making your mind get a little bit all over the place and especially does not help with the overthinking problem.
No one can tell that I woke up in the middle of the night some days having a panic attack. No one can tell this has happened to me (panic attacks, not necessarily the middle of the night thing) every now and then. Not often enough for me to feel like, somehow, I might be dealing with more anxiety than I thought I was. Randomly, without even any kind of reason. No one can tell that, despite my travelling, I’ve been crippled in bed in Portsmouth in the middle of the night because of that, or had to get out of a Pret A Manger in London because I felt like I had a lump in my throat and felt like I was going to throw up or pass out or both. Without reason. Without any kind of warning signs at all.
“Panic attacks are a lot like being drunk in some ways, you lose self-control. You cry for seemingly no reason. You deal with the hangover long into the next day.”
Things like this have been happening to me every now and then for a couple of years, now. Ever since high school, actually. I always knew I was a very anxious kind of person. Yet, these past few years have allowed me to learn more about this and most importantly, to learn that I am not alone.
The editions of the Shattering Stigmas events, previously hosted by Shannon, helped me learn, though the blog posts, more about mental health overall. A topic I started taking interest in, a topic I wanted and still want to understand.
Because there is too much stigma surrounding it.
People using words they shouldn’t, for illnesses they actually are not able to understand. People telling you to just chill, when you just physically and mentally can’t. People failing, or sometimes not even trying, to understand that it’s not just a little mood swing, just a bad day, just a little bit of stress.
I’m tired of people not getting it.
And I know I’m not perfect, either, but I’m trying. I’m learning, more about myself and about others, learning to care, to hold a helping hand and a couple of helping words for others. Just like I hope people will do when I’m on an anxiety spiral that just won’t let go.
I hope this event, these blog posts and just the overall talks about mental health, will encourage people to pay attention. No one can magically cure me, nor can they cure anyone dealing with mental health issues. I dare hoping that people will be inspired by this event. To raise their voices. To raise awareness. To give a hand, a listening ear, some love. To remind us to breathe. To tell us it’s okay not to be okay.
So… hi everyone. I’m Marie and I’m dealing with anxiety.
I know I can’t end a blog post without talking about books on here, because I’m weak and because books have helped me in this whole self-discovery and helped me in finding parts of myself and my own experience so, so much. Books I encourage you to read for their anxiety representation that I personally found on point. (Note that not all experiences can obviously be represented here. They just, worked, for me.)
- Read all of Drizzle & Hurricane Books’ guests posts for the Shattering Stigmas event.
- Read all of the blog posts for the Shattering Stigmas event.
It has been an incredible honor to co-host the Shattering Stigmas event for the past weeks and an even greater honor to feature so many incredible bloggers, too. Mental health is a topic that is very dear to my heart.
I want to thank the incredible Taylor, for doing such a great job at hosting this Shattering Stigmas 4.0, for always being there to answer all of my questions and for taking me along on this incredible, rich adventure.
I want to thank every guest poster on my blog, May, Marta, Kat, Lily, Beth, Clara, Morgane, Clémence, Sakhile, Epsita, Simant and May for sharing their stories, their beautiful, beautiful posts and their voices for this wonderful event, as well as all of the guest posters all around the blogs hosting the event. Thank you for sharing your stories, thank you for helping us shattering stigmas.
Last but definitely not least, I want to thank all of you readers. Thank you for taking the time to read, comment, like, share every blog post and making each voice of this event a little bit louder, too. Thank you for listening, for your support, excitement for the event and excitement for the guest blog posts I had the honor to publish on this little platform of mine.
I hope this event helped you understand mental health better, I hope this event helped shattered some stigmas and I dearly hope that you’ll continue along with us all, shattering all the stigmas surrounding mental health.