Recovery

27 Aug

The last two days have seen huge steps for me and have opened my eyes. I’ve thought a lot about recovery from mental health today and I’ve realised that we don’t put a big emphasis on how well people do. I have a lot of friends who are doing great things that make me proud of them it could be something small like taking a walk to make themselves feel better or something huge like  quitting self harming or opening up about their illness. Mental Health is a really personal thing and today I was able to face something huge, one of my biggest triggers.

I had a disagreement recently about my school days, although not always said in the best of ways the message was clear it needs to be a part of my past, not who I am now. So I’m rephrasing that my school days were a big part of me and I don’t want to give them the credit for making me who I am. I battled through and came through the other side. It’s strange but I usually forget that people don’t know here and when I say something people are really shocked, I’m not. Which I suppose means I can’t get mad at the people who saw it happen for not making a big deal out of it, because they’ve seen me so much better and that’s how they chose to think of me. I don’t want to go into huge details about some of the things that attributed to my depression and anxiety but the basic facts are: bullied from the age of 11 on and off, mental and physical, was very ill from the ages of 15-18.

Bank holiday Monday (for my American readers it’s a public holiday…but no one celebrates), I found myself walking into my old secondary school, a huge trigger for me. My chest started to get tight but I kept walking, I was ok then while my Mum queued to get my sisters uniform for the new year I went back to the car. It was here I started to panic, it was as if I could see bad memories…like they were ghosts. I felt sick and just wanted to escape into my iPod (my main coping mechanism at school was blocking the world out with music) Then something incredible happened, the power of my own mind started owning those memories. I started thinking about the good things that happened, I pictured memories I had with Ali at school (after all I never would have met him if I’d never gone), the few friends I had and it started to work.

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The main building

It sounds silly but I looked out the window, sat up straight and said ‘it’s just a building, the building can’t hurt me’. This thing of logical thinking about the past experiences I’ve had is new to me. I was able to stop myself before I got too bad and that’s the best feeling! I did it!

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Just after my 16th birthday, I remember being really poorly when this was taken

Recovery is something that can take a long time and takes different paths for different people. I have weekly sessions and will soon have a plan with goals. Other friends I know have a therapy called CBT, some having medication and others are on a longer plan. My twitter followers have their own ways of coping. When I was at school (above) I really didn’t deal with it well, I wasn’t coping and I’ll admit that openly. I don’t think I started dealing with it until I started uni and had the right medical support.

It doesn’t matter how long it takes, although I’ll be honest I don’t always feel like that. I do want to be ‘normal’ and not have meetings, appointments and doctors appointments but I suppose it’s just a different kind of normal. Just like some people’s normal is shopping for new clothes when they’re recovering from any illness or for other people it’s taking certain things out of their life. Every one is different so rightfully everyone’s illness and therefore recovery will be different.

I want to say: celebrate your recovery, don’t feel ashamed of bad days and good luck.

Chloe :)

Should I Vlog?

25 Aug

I love any type of social media. I do Twitter, Facebook, WordPress, the only two I’m missing are Instagram (because it’s never really appealed to me…and my Dad has it) and Youtube, ok that’s a slight lie. I had a YouTube channel when I was at college but I really wasn’t very good at it BUT in order to be the Social Media Queen I want to me. Mwhahaha, no evil laugh? Damn it.)

Writing is fab for me, I love it but I want to talk to EVERYONE meaning that I might have to undertake Vlogging too. So my loyal readers I want you opinion, once a week my ugly mug on YouTube for the world to see. I don’t know what I’ll talk about, anything and everything I suppose like I used to. One thing I really want though is it to be BETTER than my college ones which were a little bit all over the place and ranty (haha! Just like this blog at times).

I have a lot of favourites on YouTube at the moment, charlieissocoollike and Emma Blackerry being my absolute idols YouTube wise. They seem to do it flawlessly with awesome equipment, beautiful Macs, I hope you don’t all expect that, I currently have my lovely little Toshiba video camera (in Red of course) and my DSA laptop…ok it’s not top spec but it works. I plan to work my way up on this one, if you guys are interested.

So I ask all of you, would you click the Vlog link as long as I promised to still write?

Tweet me, email me chloefmetzger@gmail.com or reply below! If you just want a chat go for any of these as well I love talking to you guys!

My Big Mouth: Reading Festival Friday Review

25 Aug

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Ali and I at Reading Festival

 

 

I was one of the lucky ones who managed to get tickets to Reading Festival this year. As I entered Friday’s sold out arena I had one goal, to come out with an honest opinion of a festival. Now I’ve been to day festivals before, seeing Kids in Glass Houses, Don Broco and Lower Than Atlantis back at Butserfest 2012 was a great moment, playing Basingstoke Live this year was another, but I’d never been to one of the ‘big’ festivals after watching Reading and Leeds for the last few years. So after arriving pretty later I found it easy to just walk in, only having my bag searched (which I found really surprising) and get into the arena and sit at the Main Stage for the majority of the day.IMG_0072

My wristband! 

Blood Red Shoes 

I’d heard of Blood Red Shoes before but I’d never really listened to their music before. They seemed pretty good and I liked their overall sound, something was missing though as I listened. Even with some well matched vocals, a killer female guitarist and all three of them being able to sing. I couldn’t put my finger on it, then I realised there wasn’t a Bass Guitar, which seemed to hinder it a little. I also noticed the difference between their old songs and new songs as they introduced them, the old songs seemed to be a lot stronger, whereas their new stuff seemed a little too repetitive.

Deaf Havana 

I’d seen Deaf Havana acoustic last year and wasn’t disappointed. So seeing them at Reading was one of the main reasons I bought a ticket. The set was different to what I expected, but not in a bad was necessarily. As the set went on the guys seemed to relax, although they shouldn’t have worried. As soon as they began to play, a mix of their new and previous album, people ran towards the stage and a sea of Deaf Havana T-shirts were clearly visible. The fact that they snapped a string didn’t matter to the hundreds of fans they had pulled in and in fact added to what I’d already known – Deaf Havana is full of nice guys who generally respect and appreciate their fans. As if they haven’t gone far, they’re going to go even further still. I did miss hearing some of the older albums but as a lot of the bands I listened to in my early teens, the musics changed and although it is sad, we accept that.

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Main Stage during Jimmy Eat Worlds Set 

Jimmy Eat World 

I was actually pretty disappointed by Jimmy Eat World’ set. It got to the point where I got pretty bored and headed off to the NME stage instead. The performance just seemed kinda average in comparison to some of the other people playing on the Main Stage. Of course when it came to playing their biggest hit The Middle the crowd were dancing and having a great time, that said I don’t know if I’d pay to see them on tour.

Mallory Knox 

I managed to catch the end of Mallory Knox’s set and kicked myself. We got down to watch the last two songs and I wish I’d have gotten there for the start, the place was rammed and the crowd were going absolutely crazy, the boys have slowly but steadily got bigger since I last saw them on the bill at Butserfest 2012. After seeing just two songs I want to get the album and THAT is how you do it at Reading!

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Me between sets 

Enter Shikari 

I was really excited to see Enter Shikari’s set, I’d heard they were incredible live and Sorry you’re not (a winner) has been a top track for me since I was about 15. The music side of the set was fantastic and I don’t think I’ve ever seen a more energetic audience. It was absolutely fab, that was until the rants started, about just about anything. For me becoming a preachy band kind of ruined the set a little bit, I just wanted them to play the songs we know and love! Other than that absolutely fantastic!

Vampire Weekend 

How these guys got to such a high point on main stage I don’t know. Although they had a huge crowd I was so bored throughout, comparing the sounds to those you get on kids TV. Their two most well known songs I liked and recognised but other than that all the music sounded exactly the same with noises made rather than words….I won’t be going to see them again any time soon. Or ever.

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Paramore 

 It’s no secret Paramore are my favourite band. Ever. So as it started to get colder I held on to this while we waited and got a great view of the stage. As usual they were absolutely incredible with fantastic lighting and so much energy that it came through to the audience. We danced, we sang our hearts out that was until the power started cutting out and then it completely cut out. Hayley thought it was because we didn’t want to hear a slow song! When they then realised and couldn’t hear themselves they proved just why they should be Reading and Leeds headliners. They came to the front of the stage with acoustic guitars and said ‘we’re not moving until this is sorted out’ before Hayley sang an acappella version of ‘The Only Exception’ with the crowd. The effect was chilling and something no one who was there will forget. The rest of the set was incredible and possibly the best I’ve ever seen them, including a dinosaur singing Misery Business. It made me proud to be a Parawhore.

 

As the rain started to come in and I started to freeze I headed home rather than waiting through the 45 minute change over for Queens of The Stone Age. Instead I was at home by the time  they started and able to watch their set online which was pretty good but I’m glad I watched it from home.

Reading festival was pretty cool and depending on who’s playing I might be there again next year, give it 5 years and I might even be playing ;)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

An Update on Yesterday

25 Aug

I spent yesterday afternoon acting like a Cyber Squirrel. I curled up with a blanket around me laptop in hand and edited a load of posts for My Big Mouth that I wanted to show you all before going to the pub with the aim to publish them when I got back later in the evening then this happened. 

sick bug!

 

Yep, I had a fabulous night last night, having to run out of the pub and try not to throw up while driving home were particular highlights. I only ask for one evening out in Basingstoke and to top it off, one of the guys I’ve thought was cute since I was 10 years old was sat right by the toilet I had to keep running to to throw up. If I was single that would bother me a lot more than it does now, although come on 10 year old me was dying inside. 

That’s pretty much it. I’m already up and working on getting the posts up today, including Reading Festival Review and A Date with The Doctor. Exciting stuff! 

Sorry guys but today WILL be worth it! 

Onwards and upwards

21 Aug

Today has been bloody fab! I’m on a high and hopefully will stay this way for a while. I have a lot of plans, things booked and next year is looking incredible. I had a meeting today with someone who I count to be one of the friendliest people at the university and talked a lot about academics as well as being creative. I’m full of hope that I’ll be heading to Athens next year for an international summer school with Kingston’s Writing School. Although I initially thought it was all about fiction, it turns out there is also a non fiction course. Of course I’m terrified and to some extent I’m wondering if I should go alone but at the same time it’s 2 weeks in the beautiful city of Athens and time to sit in the sunshine, write and reflect, something I think could me good for me. Right now I’m back at home and off to Reading festival tomorrow, knowing I got one of the Student Ambassador opportunities I really wanted. Onwards and upwards :D

Dinner with a fellow nerd

20 Aug

Photo: #100happydays #day51 friends renuinted!

 

I’ve written about Joe many times. My Star Wars loving, Doctor Who and comic book fanatic, Artist, 80s kid born too late best friend. I buggered off to Basingstoke and he buggered off on holiday and after having to re arrange about 3 times we finally got to sit down, have some proper food and a catch up about what’s been going on.

To try and explain to you all how important Joe is in my life I re organised my mental health meetings so we could have our weekly natter in the library like the pair of grannies we really are. There isn’t a great deal to report apart from a beautiful Harry Potter bracelet, casually insulting each other and me deciding to throw my drink across the table (the ever so graceful person that I am) and as always discussing everything and everyone. Gotta love catch ups with Joe!

‘A business mind’

18 Aug

The quote I chose to use for today’s title is something a little different. It was something that was said to me in my mentoring session today which struck me as not only odd but something to be pleased about. I don’t go into detail about my sessions and I probably never will. They are a space when I can be perfectly honest, not let people down and say some things that have been rattling around in my brain, without causing shock. 

I have a business mind, not in a bad way but I like having an end goal and I like planning, especially when it comes to work. I work hard and I try and make connections with people on whatever level I can. Not necessarily because I want something from them, fr from it. When I meet people I’m interested in them, in the kind of relationship we have. I take note and keep a kind of log in my brain of people I know, I hope that will pay off. 

While it seems strange I take this as such a compliment it’s for a reason. My mind is functioning and thinking of a realistic future. I’m not dreaming and day dreaming about things I want, I’m making them happen. I’m talking to digital media people, I’m sitting down and throwing out ideas to Ali for a song before they’re finished. I’m working towards something and I feel like I can. It’s a huge step for me because for the first time in, well as long as I can remember it’s more of a feeling of I can, rather than can I? 

I’m setting up work, work experience in the industry and gigs for us. As soon as the boys are all back I want to sit down and sort things for the band. I’m the one who’s starting to organise girls night and a trip to Athens next summer (although that largely depends on writing talent and money). 

I’m not about to go jetting across the world but these things, they’re a start. I’m realistic in the fact that if I take on too much I could get very sick very quickly. So I’ve started learning to say no too and state what I need from people without feeling selfish. 

 

All of this will lead to something. 

 

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