You may have seen lots of articles lately promoting mental health awareness, wellbeing and mindfulness.
Mental health has also been highlighted in the media recently, especially when it comes to encouraging men to talk about their mental health.
There needn’t be any stigma about it, but it can be difficult to start the conversation.
So, in the spirit of being open about mindfulness and mental health, I’m going to share something from my life.
My best mate was killed in a car crash ten years ago, and it had a devastating effect on me.
It felt like half of my very being was ripped out, leaving a huge void. I lost confidence, my social skills diminished to almost nothing, and after sinking into a depression, I had no option but to seek out counseling.
Now, all these years later, 99.99% of the time I am absolutely fine.
However, I continue to find this time of year a struggle as the anniversary fast approaches; I will cry at unexpected moments such as driving to work, or making dinner. Oddly enough, the actual anniversary passes by without incident; rather it is the build up to it that is so mentally unsettling, stirring up once again, those familiar feelings of grief and loss.
What follows below is an excerpt from another post that I recently wrote here.
Sometimes I daydream about you suddenly turning up, as if nothing had happened, and I marvel at all the catching up we’d do; there would be a decade of things to talk about, to laugh over. Occasionally you appear in my dreams, tantalisingly real; I know you are dead, but for a brief moment before I wake up, you are living and breathing again. Ten years may have passed, but I know that you would still be you, and I would still be me, unchanged; we’d click right back to where we were. Best mates, always.
It is easy to say “I miss you”; indeed it has been said so many times that it inadequately conveys how I really feel. I have learnt that grief never truly goes away; it just gets tucked up, deep inside, but sometimes it escapes, often when I least expect it, and sometimes when I do. The pain has lessened, the wounds have healed. Sometimes the scars itch, but for most of the time they are just there, a permanent reminder of what once was.