What have I learned from the last decade? Well, it’s been a testing one that’s for sure, but it’s also been the most amazing pilgrimage of self discovery I’ve ever been on.
I feel like the last decade is where I really became an adult, anything before was part of my youth.
In 2010 I was glassed in a nightclub in an unprovoked attack whilst out with friends, and it shook me beyond measure and took me to a place I didn’t know existed. I’d been in fights before, in my teens but this was on another level. This was unprovoked and could have left me blind. Thankfully physically most of the scars are on my décolletage and not my face (though I do have a dent in my skull)
But despite appearances, mentally I was scarred beyond recognition. I was scared too, but in being scared I got angry.
I went ‘mad’ for want of a better word. I was wild. Every time I went out I braced myself for a row and alcohol only fuelled that self destruction. I got in more rows and fights than I’d ever had before. I rowed and physically fought with my then partner, and then I ended that relationship and continued down a rabbit hole of hell.
I did some messed up things and 2013 saw the catalyst to that phase of crazy.
I lost my job, almost my house, and I was alone. Friends had given me a wide berth and my nights out were spent with people I didn’t even really like and who only hung out with me for some entertainment.
I’ve always had a need to fill the shoes of the life and soul of the party, but I’ve filled them by acting like a fool. Being the loudest, the craziest and the wildest person in the room.
I met my now partner at the end of that year. I saw the new year in in Ireland with a good friend and it was like something just clicked, an epiphany if you like and I didn’t want to be that self destructive, unemployed mess, that I had become.
I got a job, and from there life has progressed at a steady pace. I’ve had some backslides, like being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and it’s affect on my both my physical and mental health. Having a baby wasn’t plain sailing and it’s hard work just being ‘normal’ most days.
Last year my mum nearly died from a freak fall and I can say with certainty I’ve never been as scared as I was then.
But I don’t feel like I’m falling from Beachy Head every time I wake up after a night out anymore, and I don’t wish I was dead. Even on the bad days, I’m glad to be alive.
I still feel like some days I fight stigmas and a misconceived reputation, but it took me a long time to make it, so I guess it’s only normal that it will take me a long while to break it, too.
That being said, my future is bright and I’m lucky. All the people in my life are in it because they want to be and contribute in some way to helping me be and feel better. So I’d say despite all of that drama, this past decade has been pretty spectacular and I’m looking forward to the next one. Taking nothing for granted is my only resolution.
Happy new year 🥳