New pages, new direction…

I’ve been keeping busy lately, mostly as a woman being propped up by multiple opioids in order to manage my pain. That makes it even more difficult for me to write – I’m either crying because of the stiffness in my pelvis or sleepy beyond belief because morphine and codiene combined make a one way ticket to snoozeville. I’ve been spending a lot of time there!

Anyway, that means it can be difficult to create content that I’m happy with, and even more difficult to write engaging stories for competitions – the levels of concentration needed to do a good job are just impossible.

Instead, when I’m awake at 3am because I’ve slept all day and the opioids have worn off 🥱 , I’ve been able to focus on drawing (which has been a bloody joy) and creating new pages for this site. Thankfully pages need facts and information rather than creative writing, so it’s been easier to build them.

But the importance of these pages is high, because I’ve finally realised that if you’re visiting the website to read about mental health then finding support and helpful ideas on specific pages will be highly beneficial.

So here’s a bit of information about the 2 new pages added this weekend;

New page 1 – Get Support

The first page I’ve created is named ‘Get Support’ and it collates the contact details of every organisation and charity that I’ve recommended on the other pages and posts in the last 18 months.

Finally, visitors have a place to go that is easy to find on all menus with links to useful organisations and charities that provide specific support. As well as mental health options there are already links to chronic pain, illness and grief organisations, and more will be added as I find them.

New Page 2 – Stress Hacks

My second page required a bit more thinking and creativity, but it’s a page I’d been considering for some time. With the help of my notebook, Google and some searching on my old blog posts, I was able to create a page with a list of ‘stress busting’ ideas, all of which are quick and easy to use.

Unlike my campaign for ‘Creative Coping Strategies’, these ‘stress busters’ don’t really require much thinking at all. They are there to help when someone is overwhelmed, frazzled, tired and strained, and designed to reduce those feelings and emotions. Hopefully, after working through the stress, that person will then feel able to engage with some long term support through their GP or one of the organisations suggested on the support page.

The conclusion of my new direction

My work on this website started out as me trying to help my own mental illness by having a place to publicly post my creativity. That was just over 18 months ago, and in that time it’s become a totally different project.

Although I work incredibly hard on the site, although it take up a huge amount of my time and although it’s pointing in a direction I’d never intended, I absolutely love it. I love that I get the odd message from mental health warriors who have visited, I love that I can see an improvement in my own creativity, I love that strangers are finding help and support when they come here and most of all I love that it’s given me a sense of worth in a world where I mostly feel worthless.

Pain and mental ill-health have left me feeling ashamed that I have no real direction, and my belief in myself has been ebbing away pretty quickly.

Finding out there is a need to add pages like this means I must be helping others, and that’s a great direction to focus my attention.

So like I say, although I’ve been feeling lost, lonely and sad, having this site (as well as studying for my degree and learning more about digital illustration) gives me something to show my daughter, proving that I didn’t give up. I kept trying to be more, i kept trying to learn, I kept trying to understand why I was so broken, and I kept showing others different ways my solutions might work for them too.

I feel close to giving up every day, but this website pulls me back.

Thanks for reading! 💜

Published by stephc2021

Hi! I'm Steph, an amateur writer and illustrator specialising in Mental Health and being a self-confessed Spoonie. My website is home to any successful fiction I create, with stories that have won so far covering difficult subjects such as baby loss and mental health in grief as well as some funny and heart-warming tales when I get the inspiration. Every drawing and picture on my website was created by me. I spend a lot of time coming up with illustrations to accompany all of my posts and pages. I try to create original content across all of my channels, whether I'm writing about my own fiction or just generally musing on mental health or my own issues. I want to be part of the change because I believe the understanding of MH in the UK is getting better, but has a very long way to go. By being honest about my own struggles and symptoms I think others will relate and hopefully it will encourage them to talk to someone and get the help and support they need. Long term my goal is to help children too, help them understand their own mental health and how to help with the mental health of those around them. I live in the UK with my partner, daughter and dog, I swear frequently and I adore a well made, traditional, gooey, chocolatey, delicious brownie.

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