Sunday, 13 August 2017

JODIE: INTO THE FUTURE...

Reader Jodie shares her hopes, fears and dreams about the future in this brave and poignant blog post...

Jodie says:
I have just finished Year Eleven. I was there for the last day, when my classmates threw flour and eggs (it wasn't allowed but the teachers weren't too angry about it) and everyone signed each other's school shirts. I was there, but a part of me felt I was watching it all from a distance, as if I was behind a glass wall. One of my friends threw her shirt in the bin that night, but I will keep mine forever because I want to remember the last five years at secondary school. I didn't realise it at the time, but they were very happy ones.

Next term my friends will be doing different things. Some will be going to the local sixth form college, some staying at school to study A levels, some going to specialist colleges locally to study art, drama, animal care, childcare, all kinds of things. Some will be starting work. It feels like a turning point, a crossroads in life, but no matter how hard I look I cannot see the future. I cannot work out where I will be or what I'll be doing, even though I've had dreams of studying music at A level and taking it further at university for as long as I can remember.

Suddenly, all that is up in the air and even the ground beneath my feet seems to shift. I can't be sure of anything, except that my exam results will not be good enough to stay on at school or take A levels. I missed four of my GCSEs because my anxiety was so bad, and though I sat the others I know I was so eaten up by worry and fear my grades will be poor. I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety a year ago, and in that time I have gone from high-achieving A grade student to someone who can't even make it into school most days. When I look into the mirror I don't even recognise myself. I do not like what I see and there is no point in applying for courses right now because I don't think I could handle them. This makes me so sad.

What will my future bring? I used to think it would take me forward to fame and fortune, or at least a career as a musician. Now I just hope my tablets work and my therapy helps and the depression and anxiety that sabotages my life will fade away like a bad memory and give me my life back again. My ambition is much simpler now. I want to pull the fear and self-loathing out of my soul and throw it away, burn it in a fire, drop it into the deepest part of the ocean. I want to be me again. I want to be free.

Awesome photo by talented reader Ribh - many thanks!

Cathy says:
This is such a brave post... Jodie's honesty about her illness shows just how damaging depression and anxiety can be. Have YOU ever struggled with mental health issues? COMMENT BELOW to have your say...

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