When I was 19

This post is on a more personal side and I’m writing these posts for two main reasons, the first being a type of external journal to the world and to leave some type of legacy behind, the second is in the hopes of inspiring people through my stories, when I was studying in Art School one of my teachers told us not to write anything that was factual about our lives, instead to make our stories fictional but in saying that sometimes I believe “the truth can be stranger than fiction”.

I have had an interesting life to say the least, I have been in and out of institutions on four different occasions since I was 19. I was diagnosed with skitzo-effective disorder at the age of 30… yep 11 years later… as I mentioned in my previous post this is not a sob story but one that I want to empower people, yeah there definitely has been some challenging times but my inner strength has always got me through and I’m writing this in the hopes to reach out to people in similar situations which might not have anywhere to turn or who have just started a similar journey to myself.

When I was admitted to hospital when I was 19 it was one of the most scariest things that had ever happened to me in my life up until that point. The lead up to being hospitalised was a complete mess which I will get into down the track but waking up in a psyche ward as a teenager was a whole other story.

Not only was I scared, but I was alone felt and intense sense of fear, rejection, embarrassment and isolation, after being in there for a few days I felt like I was ready to leave but they I had to stay against my will for two weeks. I remember feeling so scared and so ashamed at what had happened to me and where I’d ended up that I didn’t even know how I was going to deal with facing people once I was allowed out, sure lots of my friends and family came to visit but none of us really understood what was going on and it wasn’t until leaving the hospital for the first time that the real challenge began. Because I lived in a relatively small town it seemed like everybody knew what had happened to me and although it has happened to many people in the past and many more people we know since then, at the age of 19, eleven years ago this subject was majority taboo and no one really knew what was happening to me. It wasn’t until after years of research, conversations, studying, discussions, documentaries and small doses of therapy did I understand and eventually accept what had happened to me. It was, has been and still is an extremely hard road, one in which I don’t often like to talk about, as not only has it been a continual struggle daily but has also been very challenging on other parts of my life.

At first I was in denial as I wouldn’t even acknowledge or talk about what had happened to me, I would just try to shut it out and pretend that it never happened. Which was very difficult when people who I didn’t even know that well would approach me in public and ask me about what happened to me like it was some kind of joke. I would cop stares and still do off people who for some reason think it’s ok to continually stare at someone for no apparent reason, I’m not sure if this has to do with paranoia from my condition or because I live in a relatively small town full of judgemental / narrow minded people, but hey it still happens.

Even writing this down is making me quite melancholic as it not only reminds me of my traumatic past but it reminds me how far I have come since then and the amounts of hurdles, demons and obstacles I have faced over time. This is why I attempt to write inspiring posts about life because I have seen so much darkness that I know it’s not an enjoyable place to live, I want to help people see the way into the light and hopefully get some insight and inspiration for my stories and life experiences. This is a big decision for me to share publicly parts of my life that I had kept hidden for years, but I feel sharing and shedding light on my story will not only help me but those who stumble across my posts. I hope you guys enjoy my reads, there will be more updates to my story, sorry for the infrequency I am pretty new to this world of blogging so I’m just kinda making it up as I go.

I hope you stick around to find out more but I thought I’d share where my inspiration and attitude towards life comes form and why I was inspired to start writing a blog in the first place…legacy, inspiration, love and light.

The Ghetto Mermaid xo

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