So, some of you may know if you watched my youtube video, but many of you don’t, that I suffer from Anxiety.
Baking has always been something to help with it, and its always cheered me up seeing you guys bake what I post on here, and tag me in things, and in general enjoy treats baked from my website. However, being online can sometimes come with the ‘bad’ side of it, and it can be really difficult.
Anxiety is something that many people don’t understand, and many people simply can’t understand as they have never gone through it themselves, or they haven’t known anyone else to do so. Congratulations to those people, because they are lucky. I have suffered from various parts of it throughout my life from a young age, probably due to bullying for my hair colour, acne, or the fact that I wasn’t ‘cool’. When I was a teenager, I was diagnosed with an Eating Disorder summarised to be ‘EDNOS’ and this was quite hard hitting on me as I was basically officially told I had a problem.
Often people will think “Oh just get over it” and it simply is not that easy. Anxiety is like a Chemical Imbalance in the brain, and it is something that people can’t help suffering from. It can cause physical illnesses, it can cause panic attacks, it can cause all sorts, which shows its a genuine illness that someone can’t just ‘get over’.
Some people have always said ‘how can you have an eating disorder if you bake so often’ and thats a prime example of just not getting it. To not have suffered through a type of mental health illness, can make it difficult to understand for some people. Prime examples being someone saying they don’t like how they look, they’re self conscious etc, yet they post a selfie. Just because they posted the selfie, doesn’t mean they aren’t self conscious, it doesn’t mean that they’re suddenly okay. When you have a mental illness, it can be completely different or very similar to others. There’s no rules on what you have to experience and if you don’t you don’t have the illness. It varies so much, you can’t say to someone that they don’t have it.
I recently signed up to see a therapist, and I know I need it. It’s a weird thing to think about as I always used to resist after a bad experience, but now I wish I hadn’t waited so long. There is no shame in seeing someone, there is no shame in going to the doctors. It’s perfectly okay to not be okay, and its perfectly okay to not be coping some times.
I have experienced panic attacks on the way to work some times, I have had absolute melt downs in my kitchen when a recipe hasn’t worked, and I’ve cried for hours when I’ve seen some nasty things written about me online from people that have never met me. It’s something that can outright control you, but its something you can bat down and lessen if you’re willing to be open about it.
All different sorts of factors can impact my anxiety, and even the smallest of triggers can push someone to have a bad day, a bad week, or even a panic attack in my case. I am lucky enough to get invited to some events and blog work days out with companies, and often I have said no just because ‘I couldn’t do it’ and Im determined to stop this happening. I shy away from it all, and it makes me create a habit of saying no. It’s not something I want to do, but I just say it, and then its too late.
When people say ‘how are you so skinny if you bake…etc’ they probably think they’re being nice, but to be honest, its quite upsetting. It’s almost insulting in a way? People have grown to have bad relationships with certain types of foods, and often what is on my website. I bake sweet treats, and people can think that they’re only allowed the smallest of slices because its SO unhealthy, but in reality its not. ‘Looks like diabetes on a plate’…’Looks like a heart attack waiting to happen’…’Looks like obesity’. These naive, and quite frankly ridiculous comments are an issue.
When people tag their friends in my posts and say “Oh mine looked better” or “that looks disgusting” I just don’t see the need. Its one of those things where yes you may not like it, but I feel like people online can forget there is someone (me) behind the blog, trying to keep people happy, and seeing something like that is quite hurtful. They don’t think that if someone said that to them, it would upset them as well.
I realise this post has been quite negative so far but along side these things, there is SO MUCH GOOD that comes from blogging. The community online is amazing. Even though I feel like an outsider, and I often don’t interact as much as others, I know there are so many people out there that have my back. People I have never met, people I have been lucky enough to chat to because of blogging, and many of you readers. The people have have bought my ebooks, and support me by sharing my posts and such, you are all wonderful.
When I receive comments, emails, or messages from my readers saying I have helped them through something with baking, or my anxiety video, or you guys baked something for someones birthday, or a charity bake sale, I get so so happy because its just wonderful. It’s these things that keep me blogging, because I know I have a substantial readership, that would be upset if I stopped.
Sometimes I don’t always reply to comments, or I go through phases of not posting as much, and its because I am on the go 24/7, and sometimes I need to stop and take a breather. I realise this post wasn’t something I’ve done before, and it might put people off to be honest. If it does, I’m sorry this post was too much, but this is a platform I have grown by myself and I think its time to raise awareness for Mental Health and try and beat down some stereotypes and stigmas about it all.
Don’t worry, theres another delicious recipe coming this week for you all to enjoy. And if you have survived this far down then thank you. xx