I have been pretty useless at this blogging malarkey recently, I know! I have been suffering from major pain in my neck, shoulders and head thanks to a couple of slipped discs that I have obviously “twanged” somehow. Anyway, fabby painkillers from my GP and catching up on some sleep which the pain made disappear (along with my appetite!) and I am feeling a lot better. My shoulder is still causing some grief but I am seeing my physiotherapist soon so that’s not too bad I guess.
Tomorrow, I am going on a trip to the Old Bailey with several fellow students from my Uni. I am stupidly excited which is why I haven’t gone to bed yet despite an early start as I am too excited! So, watch this space on Friday, I will attempt to write as much of the visit up as I can.
In an earlier post I wrote about my exam, I mentioned that my attendance at Uni had been horrendous due to my mental health declining. I’m going to confess now something that only my mum and close friends know, I haven’t been in to any lectures etc in Uni since January, I just couldn’t face it. I did keep everyone who needed to know informed but just couldn’t get my butt out the door and onto the bus. In fact, I struggled going out at all, often staying in for days at a time with just a quick trip to the supermarket or local garage. I am not proud of this, I still need to recognise all the signs I guess and get help rather than hide under the duvet.
I have had an amazing about of support from friends and family and the University as well. Now I have all the equipment I need to help with my studies as well as a mentor who is brilliant, I am genuinely looking forward to starting the new academic year.
Surprisingly, I passed my exam which when you consider I missed an entire term of lectures is pretty amazing! I don’t advocate it as a study option though so don’t follow my lead.
Yesterday, I got confirmation that I can retake a module which I missed. I had a module that was only the length of the term I failed to attend. There is a cost implication but Student Finance have got me covered with that.
I eventually sought further help for myself and have now been told that the community mental health team are referring me to the psychological therapies team for treatment. Thankfully, they haven’t recommended mucking about with my medication which I am pleased about as it’s taken almost 2 years to get it steady.
I now have all of the back up and support that I need to get back to my studies, I am planning on improving on last year’s results and with all the stuff I have been given, I now believe it is possible. I still have to deal with the appeal against my benefit being stopped but at least I can do that now without worrying whether or not I will be accepted back at Uni in September.
The moral of this long and rambling post is that if you feel like your world is collapsing in on you, get help quickly, I didn’t but I know not that I should have done. Luckily, everything turned out OK but it might not have done and then that would have had an even worse effect on the way I was feeling. I look forward to the day when I am less broken, I can’t even think about being “fixed” as that feels an eternity away.
Yesterday was DSA day. That is, the day when all my equipment was delivered. I was over excited and was ensconced on the sofa 10 minutes before the earliest time they were likely to arrive. The 2 hour window came and went so I called to make sure they hadn’t forgotten me although I suspected the driver had got stuck in traffic, which he had! The delivery of everything went really smoothly, the engineer was a fellow cat lover so showed a lot of attention to Pete the cat who had to inspect everything as it was coming out the box. He soon mooched off when he realised none of it was edible!
So, I am now the proud owner of a brand new laptop with Windows 8 on which I am slowly getting used to. I have a headset to use with Dragon which I had great fun playing with. I also have a digital voice recorder (or dictaphone for us oldies) which terrifies me but I am sure once I have read the manual that is at least 3 times the size of the recorder I’ll soon have it sussed.
I am now hugely enthusiastic about starting back in September as I have all the support that I need and that makes me determined to do my absolute best going forward. So thank you Student Finance and University of Kent, I really do appreciate your support.
I guess I have neglected my blog lately, I didn’t mean to but sometimes life gets to you and you forget to be sociable either face to face or online!
I am still here though, going through the normal stresses and strains of life, university and everything. See what I did there?
I guest posted on another blog today, some of you may not be aware that I have a struggle with depression, have had for some time now and it’s getting tough at the moment. Life can put stress and difficulties on anyone but more so in some respects on those of us with depression. If you have a friend who you think is having a tough time then drop them an email or text them but don’t ask the usual how are you question as you’ll probably get the age old I’m fine in return. Tell them a joke or relate a funny thing you’ve seen, trust me, just laughing can make things seem better.
Once you’ve done that, check out http://thedepressedmoose.com/ he is hugely honest and might be able to make you see the world through someone else’s eyes if you don’t understand depression yourself.
So, I survived my own cooking at Christmas which is always a good thing to admit. I have also not set any New Year’s resolutions for a change. Considering I am one of those people that has usually broken them 2 weeks into the year I thought I’d better not bother this year. Instead, I am committing to improving up my weight loss/exercise regime. Since last March, I have lost 20lbs which is pretty good going to be honest, especially for someone who is not exactly 100% motivated all the time.
I have also started volunteering with SERV Kent as a controller and tonight is my first shift. I have had control of the phones and men on bikes since 7pm last night and will hand it back at 6am. For my information, click here to be taken to their website, sorry but I am not awake enough to type that much info for you, it has just gone 3am you know! The University encourages students to volunteer, we can be awarded a variety of certificates dependent on the number of hours of volunteering we have done and which of a vast number of skills we have used during that time.
I go back to University next week and have been missing it a fair bit this week. I have a small piece of work to finish off, nothing that is desperately needed but it has to be in before term starts which is made extremely easy in the age of internet and email.
I hope you all had a great Christmas and New Year, normal service will be resumed after the start of term.
So, I survived my first “proper” week at Uni. In this week, I had 2 lectures, a seminar and a workshop titled “getting started at university”.
The lectures were introductory ones, detailing what our lecturers expected from us, what we could expect from them, talks about assessments and exams. All the normal stuff you need to start you off in the right way.
We were given a quiz in the seminar to determine what (if anything) we knew about crime. I haven’t added up my score but I did quite well. We also chose the books we wanted to review for our first assessment which is due on 17th October so I sense I will be busy until then! I’m weird in that I am looking forward to getting the first piece of work in but also hoping my brain doesn’t explode!
There isn’t much I can say about the workshop, the guy taking it started by telling us what the symbol of Kent means, not the university but the county!
It got more eccentric from there but the handouts were useful.
In summary (ooh student speak there lol) I had a great week and am looking forward to next week and getting more involved in the lectures.