Living with a mental illness makes thinking about the future really hard, in my experience. My anxiety stops me from planning my future too far ahead, whilst my depression casts a black fog over my entire future which makes it hard to see at all. However, and I've found this out the hard way, it turns out that living in the present isn't productive and, for the most part, neither is it feasible.
Having spent the last few months feeling completely overwhelmed by the way that everything was falling - I've found it too difficult to work and so, for the most part, I've been spending my life sharing a double bed in Chester with Katy trying not to think too hard about the future ahead of us. It's easy to do really, ignoring the future, when you want it hard enough - and so we've lived a life of University (in Katy's case), Netflix (in my case), nightly viewings of The Chase (in both our cases) and generally avoiding talking about just what I'm going to do with my life.
However, my ever looming 22nd Birthday (which will have passed by the time you're reading this) kicked me into touch, somewhat. I can preach all I want about not letting our illness' define us and yet, for the past six months or so - that's exactly what I've been doing. My depression and anxiety have consumed me as a person and I haven't been living as much as existing. The fact is; I deserve more than that - I owe it to myself, to my parents, to my brother, to my best friends and to Katy to try harder; the same way that they've had to.
So, I wrote a personal statement and looked for University courses - I'm trying to see whether my student loan combined with a salary for Katy might allow us to move out together next year; I'm trying to think, for the first time since I got ill, about the bigger picture surrounding me and my illness; to be less selfish, to do better by myself. It's not easy, it's not easy to kick the habit of hurting yourself, or putting yourself down, or letting yourself fall under the radar because it's easier than trying and failing - but here I am trying, and if I fail? Well, I just hope you'll all be there to help pick me up again.
So, here's to the future - I guess you're all sort of along for the ride.