I’m a mum to a 13 month old little boy he’s my rock , my inspiration in my recovery I used to talk about baby steps I took at present my son is attempting to take his and it dawned upon me I’m stationery not continuing on my own journey continuing with my own steps and the realisation is for a short while I’ve been ashamed of having a past mental health history, afraid of the repercussions it has for me and my child if is mentioned fear I may have to prove I can be a parent I’ve thought that fight once I proved it’s ok to be a Mum and to have Mental Health.
I think it’s because of that experience though, the fear u may not take your child home n fear you’ve waited years for this moment n you’ve lost one child (my first born was born still born) n you don’t want ever experience that again n so I think the last 12 months I used my little boy a bit to concentrate on something else threw myself into parenting, mum and toddler playgroup sessions and exploring play gyms those yes have been fun moments n great bonding moments but I sacrificed part of myself gave up part of me my passion, my fire in my belly, my dream to drive for change for better mental health because I feared it, hated it was hurt by the stigma attached to it even lost my own way thinking I could fight for change n mental health was not ok.
But Mental health is ok we all experience good an bad days, it is hard been a parent but we all feel tiered, we all question is my child happy, we all hate the teething phase, your child will push u to your limits, break u at times for me change time with my lb sets my anxieties off, I rant inside my head he’s mocking me as he scoots off nappy half fastened.
I’ve portrayed to the world parenting selfies wow I’m a fab mum I did that for my mental health I need see I was a fab mum as I doubted I was I even quiestened I could cried tears of tiredness n frustration, hibernated n thought I was being selfish put my family first I wasn’t I was bullying myself trying juggle been mum, housework, please family n friends n do the circuit of juggle play group and play gym Id in ignoring mental health n trying turn back on Id forgotten my baby steps the importance of me n my mental health n recovery.
The last few months I’ve realised I lost me, my best friend n in turning my back on mental health lost my spark n passion volunteering and campaigning debating mental health challenging people’s views fighting for better services they were my passion, my fire n like my children n my oh it too is part of what makes and completes me n it was not ok I turned my back on n it is ok n it is not ok me keep hidden it’s not ok I don’t talk about it’s not ok because I wasn’t been true to me.
I’ve learnt it ok ask for help n talk about my Mental Health n don’t have fear repercussions of MH services because in going sure start I’ve built up a relationship with family support workers who know me n actually reassure me Katie it’s ok n yr mental health ok your just scared n learning part n parcel been a parent n reminded me that yep I probably did nearly burn out because I’d neglected my me time strangely as my lb sleeps next to me I’m finding this is therapeutic to write n feel it’s ok to write n say I’m a parent and have Mental Health.
I’ve done a small amount of volunteering n did a talk last September slowly re embracing myself back into Healthy Minds n co-ran a coproduction workshop n spark slowly reignited n in background the flicker was their n as part my journey n passion 4 change I have applied 4 uni n even part time work in paid experience n even do more voluntary work as I love volunteering n the experience will also go towards building my dream that I can make things better for myself and others with mental health that it’s ok have it’s not a hinderance n it’s ok be part of you n that you can make a difference in whatever u want do n me I want change people’s attitudes about Mental health fight for better services and make a difference n too say yes I’m not afraid to say I’m Katie I’m a parent I have mental health and you know what it’s ok.
Recently I’ve been invited to an event n meet someone important I’ve quiestioned do I deserve be their n I don’t deserve because for a moment I thought mental health not ok a few people have reminded me the things I did n said I was inspiring n I’m not its the people that support n encourage me n follow me n have n had faith I could do it fight for change they inspired me they showed me it ok to be open about they were my support my safety net the ones who gave me confidence that I could change n improve mental health n perceptions n services n in do so they improved mine n helped me in finding me Katie.
So I will go to what invited to n talk about those who inspire me n my heroes n say wished their but most of all I will say I’m Katie I’m a parent I have mental health and it’s ok but u need to have services that supported me when pregnant through to delivery an after to health visitors an family workers n as my lb gets older other people will enter our lives like teachers n for them to know to support me as I’m a parent n not stigmatise me because of mental health n me having a love n hate relationship with.
Because it’s not ok to stigmatise a parent with Mental Health it’s not ok to make feel someone feel like an inadequate parent n feel ashamed of feel can be n even be scared of becoming a parent.
Because it is ok have children it is ok be a parent n it is ok to be affected by Mental Health because I’m a parent I have Mental Health n I think I’m doing an OK job x