Posted in mental health, mental health awareness, mental health campaigner

The Scribblings Of Psychosis

Psychosis holds a lot of stigma, It also holds a lot of shame for those that experience it.

I have written about my experiences in my book In Bloom Not Broken and spoke about it in my last Vlog Here but I have never shared my scribblings and thoughts in this way. No one has ever seen these besides my psychiatrist.

There are pages and pages that could share but I have picked out just a few to try and highlight what happens in the mind of someone with psychosis.

I was ashamed about these experiences for a long time. I am in no way religious but my experiences have always had a religious spin and i found that very hard to get my head around. I was embarrassed and my last episode which these scribblings are from after it was over and I was recovering from the depression that ensues after the manic episode I would have flashbacks from this time that would stop me in my tracks and see me bursting in to tears. It was so powerful, so all encompassing that when that has gone and you are left the the depression that follows mania, it’s a confusing place and I found myself questioning who I was.

This specific episode started off the back of a lot of stress, exactly one year to the month from the previous episode of major depression that had landed me on hospital only 12 months earlier.

There was a lot going on and I was very busy. This built and it built quite quickly, I remember when it started. after a while of feeling a bit on edge and like I felt that there was something going on that I could’t put my finger on I was sat on the sofa and a white van pulled outside. I remember eyeing this van thinking “I wonder what they want, they are watching the house, they are trying to rig the house. You need to keep an eye out for these white vans”

And there it began.

I couldn’t switch off and I had this paranoia burning away at the back of my brain whilst feeling like everything was very bright, very HD like, things sounded louder and I felt like I was being sent a message from god. I felt like I was meant to do something and I just had to figure out what that was.

I was going to bed and would get a voice as clear as day right outside my ear saying my name or random words that had no meaning.

psych1

This feeling built. I was making Beauty and Beast style rose jars at this point and had started doing some Snow White themed ones with apples and felt that his had something to do with it all. I was making so many of them and was so busy fulfilling orders that I was fuelling the mania but I was unaware of this so continued with this feeling of adrenaline and paranoia corsing through my vains. Nothing felt enough, nothing was fast enough, it was all too slow. I felt like I could’t get the house clean no matter what I tried and starting to feel increasingly agitated. I felt like everything was too loud, like there was no quiet – It felt like everything around me was just buzzing,

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The religious connotations then started to take over and I felt like everyone was plotting against me, I thought my partner was going to take my daughter off me and that everyone was planning to bring me down but if I completed this mission in someway, If I protected myself, the house, the world against this first it would all be ok.

I had become focussed on red being the colour of the devil and white being that of purity, I placed coloured related items in each of the rooms and towels of these colours over the doors of rooms, to me this was “biding time” until I could figure out what I was supposed to do.

psych3

I soon linked everything together with the roses and the apples to the Garden Of Eden and i really thought at this point that it was all coming together, that it was all starting to make sense and that I would know what I was supposed to do really soon and that is why this next one is starred. I remember feeling like I had had a revelation as to what was happening and that it was being revealed to me piece by piece.

psych4

It got to the point that I was jut so agitated but feeling like I had ants crawling in my brain that I would sit and write the alphabet out over and over again. Hoping that something would jump out at me and make some kind of sense.

psych2

 

This is just a really condensed snippet of what I experienced and how I felt, you can read more about it and my story in my book In Bloom Not Broken Here but I just wanted to share a few of these pages as there are many but I wanted to share just a few in this way as I want others to know they are not alone with having experiences d this. I felt like I was the only one to have these sorts of thoughts and beliefs and I found it extremely traumatising and shameful and just very difficult to accept that my brain had acted in this way!

I was embarrassed and even thought my psychiatrist would think I was crazy to the point I gave her all these scribblings in my hospital admission and I cannot tell you what a bit step that was and how nervous I felt thinking she was going to tell me that I was a freak. As it was she handed them back and just said that it was quite normal and it wasn’t anything she hadn’t seen before. I could have kissed her. I was so sure I was only one.

So I decided to share these to try and give others that may be feeling that I bit of how I felt when she said that to me. A little bit of realisation that you are not a freak and that you are not alone. We aren’t ashamed if we break our leg or our arm so why should we be ashamed if our brains broke for a bit?!

You are not alone in experiencing these things.

I do think there needs to be more support for psychosis AFTER it has happened as I found it’s not just the episode itself that needs treating but it’s very difficult to come to terms with and I think there does need to be more to support people with the feelings that come after this kind of episode as it isn’t easy. It’s not like just because the psychosis is treated and gone it feels instantly better. There is a lot of aftermath thoughts and feelings that go with it too.

If you are struggling please as always, reach out for help. You are not alone with this and it’s okay not to be okay.

 

Posted in book publishing, mental health, mental health awareness, mental health campaigner

Psychosis And Me – thoughts, experiences and stigma.

I finally got around to watching the amazing David Harewood Psychosis And Me documentary and I wanted to do a video as I realised I haven’t spoken about this quite so much.

There is a lot of stigma around psychosis and what experiencing psychosis actually means.

I have spoken about my experiences in my BOOK – In Bloom Not Broken and it is something that is definately tough to tale about but this documentary did a fantastic job so I wanted to touch on my own experiences in the above video and share with you a couple of my “scribblings” from the time.

It’s important that this topic is spoken about more so I am grateful to David Harewood and this documentary as I feel it is quite a hidden mental illness – one that carries a lot of shame and gets shyed away from.

It is a scary experience, it’s confusing and it is hard to come back from too – the procesing and feelings that come in the aftermath are in some ways just as difficult and I think there also needs to be more support post psychosis – not just treating the psychosis itself and this is important to highlight I think.

If you have experienced psychosis you are not alone and you are not alone in how it makes you feel and how it makes you question yourself. It’s okay to talk about this. Don’t be alone.

If you would like to read my story and journey through mental illness my book is available here.

Posted in mental health, mental health awareness, mental health campaigner, Uncategorized

Lord Mayor Award!

I am still in shock that I received this letter telling me that I am getting a Lord Mayor Award!

This last month or so has been a rollercoaster of some amazing things and some terribly stressful things.

In about a month I have almost completed a course I never thought I would have the ability to do, I have changed my surname by deedpoll for personal and emotional reasons, walked away from my remaining parent who I desperately wanted a relationship with but realised this was never going to happen, struggled to buy food due to job loss, had to talk to the council about social housing and possiblity of homeless registers, then had some amazing person pay my level 3 counselling course fees anonomously which blew me away then this dropped through the door!!

Talk about roller coaster!!!

Some terrible stress mixed with the most amazing things has left my emotions feeling a little all over! However I am so immenseley grateful for the good lately and these incredible moments that have picked me back up. I don’t know who paid my course fees but I don’t have enough words to thank them.

I can’t believe that the Lord Mayor believes that I deserve this amazing recognition but I am blown away and so so thankful and I hope I am able to use this to move forward and do even more in relation to my mental health projects because that’s what I do it for, to reach people and show it is possible for things to get better and to not give in to those thoughts of suicide, that one more step is a step in the right direction, even if it feels wrong because you are still here to fight!

I wrote my BOOK and shared my story to reach as many hands of people who feel they have reached their end of hope as possible to show that if I can do it, so can anyone out there.

I do the projects that I do to create conversation around mental health and also to show people that small things that we can all easily do – they do make a difference to people. To quote the Dalai Lama:

“If you think you are too small to make a difference – try sleeping with a mosquito”

We are all capable of change, we are all capable of creating change.

I am incredibly humbled and grateful for this award (even if recieving praise I actually find quite difficult) The letter absolutely lifted me when I was starting to feel quite down and doubt myself and I am incredibly thankful for that and eveyone who supports me here and online daily. It really does mean the world to me.

This just shows though it is possible to go from being gripped by mental illness, multiple hospital admissions and wanting to die and planning just that to holding on by a thread and going on to do things (even though I still struggle and cannot say it’s perfect by any means) that I never thought I should, could or would and have found a true passion and positive in the hell that once was.

So keep going my friend, don’t give up on you. Not ever.

Posted in anxiety, mental health, mental health awareness, Uncategorized

Never Give Up On You. Ever.

Never give up on you. Never give up on your hopes and dreams. It is possible to get through the seemingly impossible.

I wanted to do this vlog to talk about feeling like we can never achieve, never be who we want and never achieve our goals and dreams.

Anyone that have read my BOOK will know the blocks that have stopped me moving forward in relation to mental illness and I just wanted to tell you all why even when you feel like it’s impossible, like you will never be able to work towards your goals, like you will never get past just not wanting to be around anymore…..Why things can and do change and to say just never give up on you. Even when it’s all you want to do. I have been there. I may even go back to being there at some point because mental illness follows us around but I do know now that if I have got through it before I can again…and again….and again. It’s totally possible to find a space in your brain that will eventually tell you the same even if you don’t feel that way now.

Just don’t give up on you. Keep those goals and dreams close to your heart and don’t let them go, for they will keep you going.

 

Posted in mental health, mental health awareness, mental health campaigner

Can You Help Bring A Mental Health Awareness Event To Life?

One of my main mental health awareness goals for 2019 has been to hold an event.

I think so often it’s easy to focus on the negatives of mental illness that we forget about those out there that struggle, battle their own brains everyday but go on to help others.

I want to create an event that recognises those people, that recognises those one in a million professionals and that allows people to share their stories to offer hope to others.

I have been lucky enough to have been given a complimentary venue from the Bierkeller in Birmingham which is amazing seen as even Solihull and Birmingham Mental Health Foundation Trust woukd not offer their own venue/function room for this event, telling me that that had yearly financial targets to hit…. (Shocking I know, this is the mental health trust for the whole of solihull and Birmingham!)

There will be many more costs however and while my usual projects are funded from my own pocket with the occasional very kind donation, this project I will need some support with.

Unfortunately it doesn’t fit the criteria for any finding that I have looked at so I’m looking for your help!

This event will benefit not only those in Birmingham or those that attend but I hope as I have found through my other projects those further afield that read about it, hear about it to show that you CAN overcome, you CAN achieve and that there is hope.

I would really appreciate any help and 100% of all donations will go towards making this event happen!

Please see my fundraising page here

Posted in mental health, mental health awareness, mental health campaigner

Words Of Hope Video – In Bloom Not Broken

I have put this video together to help and inspire others that may be struggling with their mental health and to promote mental health awareness.

Everyone in this video has personal experience of mental health issues and have all come together to create a video to tell others that it’s okay not to be okay, it’s okay to have mental health issues and to talk about it and most of all, things can and will get better.

I have done projects within the local community and I wanted to do something that was accessible to more people and available online to offer hope and inspire others especially as it is nearly Christmas.

While it may be “The season to be jolly” , the fact is that a lot of people, myself included struggle around Christmas and New Year for a variety of reasons and so I wanted to put something out there from people of different backgrounds, from across the world sharing pieces of hope from their own experiences with mental illness.

There is a lot to be said from hearing words of encouragement from people that have been there and so I hope people get some comfort from this video and will share it to offer hope to others who may be struggling right now.

 

 

follow me on twitter @KatieHoughton85

Posted in mental health, mental health campaigner

UK Blog Awards – Please Vote for me ♡

I’m through to the next stage of the UK Blog Awards 2019 which is very exciting!

The UK Blog Awards celebrates bloggers from a whole range of different categories and I am under the “Mental Health” and “Wellbeing” categories.

These awards mean the world to me due to their ethos and what understand for. Alot of their social posts are very much of my own beliefs and what I try to convey and so I’m chuffed to bits that I am in this next round.

40% of this next round is on public vote and so very much in your hand and I would be SO grateful if you could take seconds to vote for me HERE

To win this would be amazing, I often doubt myself and so this would not only be a major achievement for me but it would also have the potential to open up further possibilities and opportunities to use my voice and experience to help others which is what I ultimately want to do.

Some of you may or may not know that I start a counselling course next week (on my birthday!) Which I have wanted to do for at least 8 years!! My ultimate goal and dream is to one day have a little retreat where people can go when feeling suicidal with no where else to go for a respite.

All of the things I am doing here with this website, with the media things I’ve been involved with, these awards I feel it’s all to lead to something where I can use my voice on a larger scale and have a little house of hope! That’s the dream. That’s the goal and these awards are another little step in that direction for me so it really would mean the world to me if you could vote and share to as others to do the same. I really would appreciate it ♡

Thank you lovelies ♡♡