Anxiety & Depression in the Holidays - Part 2

Hello cutie!

This is a piece carrying on from this post which I shared with you yesterday.
Halloween is the first holiday/celebration of many over the next season, so I realised that this was quite important to share.

First, a little context to why I'm writing this.

I want to be completely honest with you.
This is the first year that I am truly looking forward to Halloween in a very long time, and it feels amazing to genuinely say that.
I am looking after myself and I am determined to make this year a blast.
But Halloween hasn't always been fun for me.

My Halloween Story;

As a child, I very much enjoyed Halloween.
I went to many classic but fun as heck All Hallow's themed parties, I bobbed half eaten snot-filled apples, I dressed in awful costumes which I thought were the bomb at the time - and was pretty much a witch in a bin bag every Halloween (my mother and I were almost as creative as those on Pinterest) (ha ha lies) (I was young).
I really did enjoy myself, especially the time spent running around the house in a combination of costumes with my sisters, I have lovely vibrant memories.

But, things change as you get older.

From the age of about 8-10, I (unfortunately) went trick or treating with my childhood bully every year. She would steal a lot of my sweets and always go out of her way to make me feel embarrassed about what I was wearing.
I was used to her snags as I grew up with her, at the time I had no idea she was bullying me as it was my norm - however this was the only negativity I had ever experienced on Halloween. Which isn't a lot, at all.
In fact we did have a lot of fun, especially winding up the village vicar.

Alas, don't worry, I had an amazing little friendship with two other girls and I trick or treated until the age of 13 with them.
But we turned 13. The age in which you're very much discourage from trick or treating, as you're 'too old' - what a load of balls on toast.

That's when the 4 years of yearly Halloween anxiety and depression began.
You see, during my 14th Halloween, I had pretty much just lost my school friendship group to sprouting teenage hormones, ignorance, jealousy and stupidity, and plain bad luck- I was already very down. 
I had no friends at school and very little out of school who were accessible and I could see often.
This Halloween (2010), as down as I may have been feeling whilst sitting at my Grans, it was a very important day. 
It was the day I was introduced to One Direction whilst catching them out of pure luck when flicking onto XFactor by accident before leaving my Grandma's that evening.
 Little did I know that watching 5 boys sing Total Eclipse of the Heart live would change a lot of my life - I would go onto start a popular One Direction twitter account the month after, which would lead me to blogging.
Here. Right now. Crazy.

Anyway. Not much changed a year later, in terms of the situation that I was in that past year.
In fact, a lot of things continued to get worse for years after.
The age of 14-17 was kind of the pits for me.

I became dangerously obsessed with the idea of having 'social' plans for Halloween, just like I had when I was younger.
Except, I had no friends to invite me places anymore like I once did; and plus, I was that 'boring ill kid'.

I developed a fear of Halloween, and would put a lot of stress on myself around that period because of this.
When I say fear, I don't mean I was scared of All Hallows but rather, an anxiety that couldn't be controlled.
It absolutely swallowed me up.
Every Halloween I would be reduced to tears, many many tears.
Because I was devastated over not having plans, to me that meant not having friends and it showed me the reality of the situation I was in, the situation that someone my age should never have to be in.
It was a reality I couldn't take and I would treat myself badly because of it.
I would see all my friends having fun on Facebook whilst I was at home in mental pain, and this would fuel even more self hate.

This lead me to absolutely hating Halloween and dreading it. Every. Damn. Year.

This of course may sound stupid to some, but to put in it perspective; you may have experienced similar too.
Others may feel the same stress about New Years, Christmas Eve etc.
Imagine not being invited out at New Years or Christmas. Then seeing your 'friend's' post about it for the next week.
It hit me, equivalently, that hard.

This anxiety and deep sadness however, would have been something that I would have never thought of sharing with you until I saw these comments online;

And I remembered my pain.

And I want to help others also in this pain, or at least try make it a bit more bearable.
So I've decided to share you my top tips with getting through Halloween, whilst still trying to look after and enjoy yourself. You can view my personal tips by clicking here!

I know that if you are dreading it, you can see Halloween/the holiday period getting closer on the horizon and you want to curl up in a ball and never move again.
I know.
Although I am not present with you, I am with you, always.

When you're in a deep pit of sadness, holidays like Halloween, Christmas, NYE, can become tormenting.
They are no longer fun.
They can make your sadness more painful.

Over the next season, our social media is going to be flooded with never-ending Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years content.
It's already a struggle getting by for some, but it's going to be made so much harder for so many to deal with their burdens with the constant reminder of the loses in their life.
As hard as they will try to enjoy the season of 'joy', it's only going to remind them deep down how broken they are. And that's so very painful to deal with.

So this season, reach out to as many people as you can.
Open your house up to them in the holidays.
Frequently share on social media that your inbox is open and be a friend for those who could really do with one.
Use social media to help and to heal, than to post and to boast. (Like what I did there?)

It will make all the difference.
You could help someone survive that holiday.
You could, ultimately, save a life, simply by being there.

My experiences with New Years is wobbly but I managed to get by with only a few grazes and without the deep sadness I felt every October 31st.
I am so fortunate to have always felt so loved and appreciated at Christmas, and I have never had to experience a truly dark holiday period.
For me, there was always a light, but for other's, this is simply not always the case.

Be that light for someone before the darkness engulfs them.

Stay safe and stay beautiful.

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  1. Totally know where you're coming from. I know many councellors will tell you to avoid social media at times when you know all you will see is post after post of everyone having fun and the best time. And I think they have a good point. It's one I made about surviving Christmas and New Year with depression on my blog. Plus in reality you have to remember reality can often be a long way from all a photo claims. But I like how you have turned it around as a platform for people to get in touch if they too need help and a friendly ear.
    I think for me Halloween anxiety can come from your doorbell constantly going or knocking at the door. Especially now the smallest shocks can affect your ME. I don't want to begrudge anyone their fun. I do wish we adopted the American/ Canadian principle of if there's a pumpkin outside the house knock, if not don't. As I feel there's a lot of vulnerable people out there and sometimes not always the nicest trick or treaters. I do find it odd that at any other time of the year knocking on a strangers door and taking sweets from them is considered dangerous yet all is ok on that night.
    Sending hugs. Hope you'll be ok tomorrow xx