In 2015, there were two words that ruined my year.
….ok so that’s a bit dramatic but it got your interest
and it’s fair to say that these two words together did
directly affect my health in a really negative way.
Bit of background first. 2015 did prove to be a very
trying year in a number of respects. As Mums, we can
all find our load a little heavy at times, trying to
fit everything in for ourselves, around our family’s
needs and schedules.
I’m no different in that respect.
Two young boys who, as much as I love them to pieces,
can be a bit of a handful. Running my own business in
and around school runs, after school clubs and other
‘social engagements’ of the pre-teen type.
With my other half being deployed overseas for more
than 6 months altogether and a series of family
bereavements, on top of the usual family trials, 2015
proved a bit of a challenge to say the least.
But we all have a ‘brave face’ we can put on.
Get your head down and get on with it.
Smile and it’ll get easier.
I’ll just get through today….
I’ll just make it to the weekend…
I’m an advocate of taking care of yourself. Eating
nutrient dense food, staying properly hydrated, moving
regularly in a way that makes you feel good and
recognising when you need rest and recovery time.
I do my best to practice what I preach – though those
that know me, know the ‘rest’ badge is one I’m not so
good at wearing and have to really watch myself with.
It’s simple isn’t it…when you’re struggling a bit,
feeling low or down or just need that extra bit of
support, you just reach out and ask for help.
Or not really.
Reaching out and asking for help and support, from your
nearest and dearest, from friends and family is
absolutely the right thing to do.
It ‘spreads the load’, it allows you time to recognise
and deal with your own emotions and may even provide
some solutions you’d never even thought of.
Except I didn’t.
I just kept using the same two words.
The same two words that dug me deeper and deeper into a
difficult hole. A hole that became quite lonely,
scary, increasingly sad and incredibly isolating.
Whenever people asked how I was – no matter if they
were close friends, or even family, I just used these 2
words and carried on.
Until I reached the point where everything was a
struggle. I was simply exhausted and these two words
prolonged the agony.
What were the two words?
How are you doing?
Is everything ok?
However people phrased it, those two words meant I
could cover up the grief from those bereavements, the
struggle of coping on my own, the feeling of everything
crumbling around me.
One friend saw through the “I’m fine” and kept an eye
on me, from a respectful distance. Letting me know
they knew I wasn’t fine, letting me know they were
there when I was ready to let go and open the doors on
all those emotions.
That’s what we all want and need from time to time. To
know that someone is looking out for us. To know there
is somewhere or someone we can go to, without
judgement, fear or recrimination.
So I did get to the point where I was able to share
with a close few that I really wasn’t fine. I was
doing one thing I find really hard myself – asking for
And do you know what? It was fine!
Well at least the world didn’t implode, nobody ‘judged
me’ and I didn’t turn into a gibbering mess in the
corner somewhere…..not completely anyway ;-).
The support and love I received when I finally put my
hand up and said “I’m not fine” was incredible. It
saved me – from myself.
Don’t get me wrong – it didn’t fix everything
overnight, but it did make everyday a little bit
It was easier knowing that people were there to love
and support me.
It was easier not always having to wear that ‘brave
face’ which uses up soooo much of your valuable energy.
A few months down the line, and I still feel incredibly
vulnerable at putting this post ‘out there’ – so why do
• To make myself accountable – to publicly say I
wasn’t “fine” …..and that’s ok. We all have ups and
downs, struggles and triumphs. The world does not need
each of us to be a superhero or SuperMum.
• To say a heartfelt thank you to my friends and
family for being amazing and helping me through.
• Looking after your health, is as much about
looking after your mind as it is nurturing your body.
• To help anyone out there who feels they’re
struggling at the moment – being a parent is really
hard work. It’s so easy to put your family’s needs,
wants, ambitions and desires first that we can soon
forget what our own are, let alone how to go about
them. Remember You.
You are amazing.
You are worth that love and support – and your family
will have a much happier, stronger, confident member as
• To anyone out there who has a friend they haven’t
spoken to in a while – don’t just drop them a text,
don’t stick that meme up on Facebook (you know the one
that says true friends don’t need to talk everyday….),
don’t message them via social media……pick up the phone
and talk to them.
Go and see them.
If they say they’re ‘fine’, listen carefully to what
they’re saying and not saying.
Be the friend they need, rather than just letting them
be the friend they think they should be. One day, you
might need that friend to do the same for You.
The quotes within this post were sent to me by an
amazing lady that I’m lucky to be able to call my
friend. I hope that they strike as much of a chord for
you as they do for me.
Whatever point in your life you’re at right now, there
is a path you can take and it’s absolutely fine to ask
for help along the way, particularly with regards to
your health and happiness.