I've recently made a promise to myself to get back into doing more internet stuff once again. Seems like an odd goal to have but at my peak time internet wise I had a good thing going. Between being active on here and starting regular Youtube uploads as well as being part of Xbox clans and groups I essentially had a second social life, and it was great. I'd just graduated university and I was looking forward, perhaps rather naively, to breaking out into the real world like a young bird takes it's first glorious flight.
There seems to be a sort of unwritten code in society that means a lot of people skirt around the strange 'early twenties' faze of life, where one feels they should know what they're doing but really feels lost and hopelessly alone. From talking to other people I know this isn't an experience unique to myself by any stretch.
At the time I was blissfully unaware that a dip in my mental health was imminent and over the next year or two I'd really struggle at times. There were times when I would finish my shift at my full-time job (as a Barman at a well know pub in my nearest city) and I would just drive to the middle of nowhere. There I would fester for what would seem like an eternity but in actual fact was more like half an hour.
'What was I doing with my life? Have I made too many wrong decisions? Was there any point in me carrying on obviously making decision after wrong decision?'
Every day felt like an ongoing struggle between the real me and this imposter, this doubtful second identity that had manifested in my head. This second identity would chirp up constantly about how useless I am and how the friendships and achievements I thought I had were really just superficial, I had no real friends and I had achieved nothing. This was of course absolute tosh, in reality I had just graduated with a good degree and had friends both through work and my studies who had my back if ever I needed. At the worst times my mental health issues convinced me that I was in fact living in this alternate world that this 'second identity' had created, and it sucked.
Like any mental health struggle there were still good days and good times even though fleeting, the people I worked with were some of the best people I've ever met, people who joined together to make the best of what was all told, a bit of a naff job. I met a girl who I subsequently dated for three months, and while ultimately we decided we were just friends, she has become one of my best friends and someone who helps me cope on those days where I lapse and I'm not the best version of me.
I'm glad to say that after this two year blip I'm getting back to my best, I've been in my 'new' job for over a year and a half , it's a job that I really enjoy and that challenges me to better myself every week. I have a great group of close friends looking out for me who give me a purpose outside of work and with whom I can adventure in the experience of life. Most importantly I have hope, a light at the end of the tunnel and an understanding of what I have really achieved to get to where I am now. I can look back on my time struggling with mental health and see that I've come out of it a stronger person. Sure there are still days where I feel distant and lost, but I am able to identify this and reach out where appropriate.
If you've made it this far then well done! Below is a link to my latest and hopefully first Youtube video in a run of regular uploads (once more!). Hope you enjoy and thanks for taking the time to read this likely incoherent post!