Invisible Humans


Crisis UK Homeless Charity video made by the Crisis Choir featuring Annie Lennox

Thinking about life and my continued good fortune in no longer being homeless, I have to spare a thought of those who are and is there a light at the end of the tunnel.

I can sit here and give the statisitics which never really give the full story, which only serves as a reminder of what it is like to be invisible.

In the UK presently homelessness has reached epidemic proportions, you just have to look at the news to see most if not every major city in this country to see that homelessness and destitution has spilled out into every area of public life.

To try to give a glimpse of what your life is worth when you don’t have a roof over your head, in a nutshell, it’s worth as much as the generosity you are given at a moments whim.

No matter your gender your vulnerable, from ridicule to sexual attacks, freezing to death, dying of hunger, murder, imagine that, those are your choices each and every day this is what you have to face.

There are different types of homelessness, you can sofa surf(which  I did for 4 yrs until all options were exhausted and ended up sleeping on a shop floor where I volunteered)) or street homeless neither has a humanising effect on your self worth.

The reports since winter have set in on the street deaths rises each year, which I find to be incomprehensible, this is not the dark ages where there were no resources, we have them however the powers that be do not want to distribute them in a way that can help people make their lives better, we have properties all over the country that stand empty, with investment can be made into homes, it appears thats too easy.

We have hundreds of charities with little or no funding desperately trying to make a difference though they’re not even near the tip of this gigantic gaping hole within our society, I salute these men and women who try to do something within their communities to help, oh yeah local politicians pat them on the back etc, but nothing real that can be measured is done, lip service I think it’s called.

When you sleep on someone’s sofa, it’s ok until they decide you can’t and that can be when you return that night, or in the middle of the night, even worse when the “boyfriend” of your friend tries his luck, which of course its your fault and you have to go.

There are those who offer  a sofa comes with conditions, like doing housework etc which can pretty turn into “if you don’t help” you can’t stay I’ve always been more than willing to “help” but not to be enslaved, there again it goes back to the choices you don’t have.

There will be times when you’re so desperate that you will literally do anything to survive, and to outsider you become the architect of your own downfall, it’s just not that simple even the worst option is the best option when your faced with the devil and the deep blue sea.

Mental Health becomes a moot point, you have disappeared so far into yourself, that you cannot think let alone allow yourself to feel anything, you live moment by moment hoping that cracks won’t show for today anyway.

I will say that 18 months on there is always that fear that this won’t last I try not to give into those feeling however there are days when it consumes me, I think the darkest days are behind me, though I still remember what it feels like to be invisible.

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The Little Voice Inside…


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It’s been so long I feel as though I’m at Blogger Anonymous “Hello I’m cay and it’s been 8 months since my last blog post”!

It’s comforting that I can come and go knowing that there is support there should I need it’s never been about hundreds of followers more that I have a place where my voice doesn’t seem so little.

I forgot my manners Hi, and nice to be amongst you all again and thank you for taking the time to share my thoughts, I warn you thay’ll be a bit jumbled (I’ve suddenly forgot how to write) however I shall plough on.

My thoughts over the last few days have been about my eternal inner dialogue which is a 24/7 affair and I’m afraid it often ebbs more than it flows, though I think there has been more clarity of late, of which I’m always thankful.

Lets go back a little I have been in the throes of a new relationship which started back in December, sadly it was not meant to be, it ended a few months ago, now normally I would be devastated by this and I mean that in the way of, I feel that I’m not good at relationships of the heart or any close relationships I think I’m to blame as I don’t really have trust in people.

It comes to something when you realise that at 53yrs making relationships sustainable require quite a lot of work, which I’m prepared to put in, however my need for everything to be perfect is self sabotageing(I know) but am unable to stop the constant anxiety that I’m trying to hard therfore doing everything wrong, sounds mad but I hope makes sense.

Back to the man friend, he is a really nice guy, though I discovered he had a few problems of his own which he wasn’t prepared to open about, which is ok, though it did put a big strain on our relationship, eventually I had to be clear and basically told him that I couldn’t relly help him even though he will have my support in terms of he can pick up the phone anytime(which he has) but I have to deal with my own crap first.

My first foray into putting myself first, made me feel pretty crap, though it had to be done and I do feel lighter for it, there just wasn’t room for me to immerse myself into anothers problems which I’d always done in the past thusily leaving me a little emptier each time.

I’m not sure if this is a sign of strength or cowardice I dwell on it often, no answers yet, the sky hasn’t fallen it so I think it’s ok.

It’s been 17 months since I’ve been living in my flat, my biggest fear was that I wouldn’t manage after 4 yrs being homeless therefore invisible, and I have to say what an absolute joy it is to come home each day, tinged with sadness as homelessness in the UK has soared and resoureces have stretched to breaking point, the cold weather plummets seeing more men and women sleeping rough, there isn’t a day goes by with a report of a homeless sleeper found dead.

I do volunteer at shelters etc, but it’s really just putting a bandaid on a bigger problem, I do feel guilty at times, I overcame and many of these men and women have not or have not yet got themselves in front of the right organisation to give them the help and support they need.

I walked outof my job 8wks ago,I finally had enough, I refuse to work in a toxic enviroment, where disrepesct is the order of the day, I only did minimal hours with the help of benefits, I don’t think my mental health could have taken anymore, it was the right decsion I know now that the mind and spirit are fragile, also I can no longer allow my mental health to be comprimised in anyway I don’t think I would survive the alternative again.

I’ve also joined the local gym, and have been doing really well, it’s been years since I exercised and to use Aretha Franklin’s qoute : “I’d become entirely too fat” I know some of this was stress weight, so far so good I go 4-5  times per week I’ve lost a dress size it also gives me a couple of blank hours per day which keeps the negative thoughts at bay.

All in all eveything seems ok depression is pretty low although anxiety spikes often, the main thing being it’s not engulfing me as before and that’s progress,

I still may refer back to (Mind-mental health service) as there are still some unresolved issues that I need to deal with as always I feel that I have to be aware and be in a position where I can ask for help and not feel ashamed for doing so, as we all know the stigma around mental health is prevelant, so it’s important to remember were not alone, especially this time of year when emotions can run high and isolate us even more.

SAMARITANS UK 24/7 365 CALL FREE FROM ANY PHONE: 116 123

 

 

 

 

 

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I Am Me


 

 

 

 

 

 

Someday’s when the tears fall I’m left feeling bereft, grieving for the person that I was, unable to bridge the gap between who I am now.

The grief really begins with, the idea that I’ve always seemed to a be a woman of all seasons a chameleon if you will, I seemingly have the ability to be whomever anyone wants me to be when really I want to be just me.

A conversation I had last week brought home that others seem to put me in a box, I might add I jumped into happily,  in which I felt trapped and any thoughts of escape are met with a skepticism that I wouldn’t survive outside of this perception.

I work with such a person, who is actually strong willed, basically good very deep down, though has this tendance to be “Honest” in her quest to be “honest” she is actually very hurtful, brutally so, and lacks the self-awareness of how her honest words can hurt.

I’ve seen in others the pain of her self-proclaimed expertise on every subject under the sun, she speaks loudly at you and over you, a bully if  truth be told, it appears that because I won’t bend to her will, I become a target from time to time which of course brings back deep-seated anxieties to the fore.

You see, she realises that I see through her, which makes her angry, I can deal with that, but cannot allow her to diminish the progress I’ve made over the last year, she is unaware of my story and the journey I’ve undertaken to become whole, frankly she lacks the empathy to understand that people break for many reasons, other that indulgence.

This really isn’t about her, it’s about me and how I deal with the ups and downs of everyday life, which many of you know can be a challenge, my moods are going in a downward spiral and I’m fighting hard with what I’ve learned to reverse the trend as it were, though sometimes I just feel so lonely and wonder if it’s all worth the effort.

This has been a bit rambling, I’m at cross roads yet again, “I just want to be me” with all my flaws, they’re mine I earned them, just as I have every wrinkle, grey hair, they prove that I’ve lived and overcome, for so long I lived with the idea that being perfect was everything and regularly went 15 rounds with myself on a daily basis when it wasn’t I have the scars to prove it! my imperfections are perfect!

I don’t want to be anyone else, just me, it’s enough.

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Chasing Rainbows


Sometimes I feel like Dorothy wearing ruby-red slippers click my heels 3 times and all will be alright in the end.

Clearly, that is a fantasy one which I try to hold onto as I still struggle daily, with feelings of inadequacy about everything .

I’ve realised even after months of therapy I probably will have to refer back to Mental Health services, my mood keeps fluctuating which sends my anxiety skyrocketing as much as I try to follow the principles of CBT I still can’t quite get there.

On the relationship front we had a bit of a wobble a few weeks ago, a few dates got cancelled at the last-minute, I over reacted not so much with him, it was me thinking about the worst case scenarios as to the why so stupid really, I know stuff happens that is out of our control however, I have these silly rules that I’ve made for myself that everything must be “just so” which shows that I’m still striving for the kind of perfectionism that is destructive.

So to get the first strike in fearing I was going to be hurt, I ended it, the first feeling was one of making a decision and following through followed quickly by realising that perhaps I should have given him a chance, so of course I did nothing, scared of opening up a dialogue which meant to me I was unable to maintain a basic relationship.

This all speaks to my not being able to connect with others in a healthy way, which furthers strengthens my anxieties allowing them to run wild and take over.

After a few weeks we did talk he explained what had been going on with him which wasn’t anything to do with our relationship, however as I explained I had made it clear that I was open and honest and expected the same, though as I said it, the thought hit me, I shouldn’t expect the same level of my perceived perfection in him, in others words just because I’m overly hard on myself I cannot expect others to live up to impossibly high standards.

This appears to be a  small breakthrough, I still expect us to be open and honest. though I don’t have to seek explanations to the nth degree, happily we seem to have turned the corner, he’s coming for dinner tonight, which should be fun.

I still need to work hard to get to grips with my mental health though it seems that the work that I put in doesn’t seem to yield the results I want, I’m so tired of me, compared to a year ago I have many good positive things in my life, but can’t quite grab hold of the idea that my life has moved forward the question being why I aren’t enjoying it as I should.

Fear lurks at the back of mind all the time I have lots of good stuff now, which I seem to push away and to find new things to be scared of, and there are still times that I lock myself away from everybody I know this is not right, every time I step out of my comfort zone an invisible thread pulls me back, the little voice telling me I’ve still got other things to worry about which of courseI do !!!!.

The yellow brick road is a long one, I don’t want to meet the wizard, I just want to meet ME!

Love Cay x

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