One of my most successful and poignant blog posts was me admitting to suffering with depression and having a mental illness. The post to this day still helps me. When I am having a low moment or feeling like everything is on top of me, I look at the post. It was #LifeUnfiltered and my honest reflections on photos I had put on social media. Friends have often commented how they liked the Instagram truth and the reality of the photo. It helps to admit to what was actually going on behind the camera lens, or even just out of focus of the perfectly square image. I think we can all admit to getting the perfect picture, yet a few inches out of shot is dirty dishes!
Here are a selection of Instagram photos from last year and the honest truth behind the photo.
As the caption says, I treated myself having given a very difficult presentation at work discussing my experience with depression. I had stood in front of 100 colleagues and been brutally honest, on the verge of tears and with a broken voice. I’m not sure if it was the baby bottle, or how emotional the day had been, but I overslept the next day and missed my alarm. That day was a massive turning point for me, I managed to turn my experience into something positive and help others.
Oh the annual Christmas Cake. Every year I tend to get a little stressed over it. You constantly see the picture perfect cakes produced by all the GBBO stars and mine never seems good enough. Despite a slightly crooked star and no cake ribbon, I managed to not have a freak out over the cake. A huge step for me.
The stereotypical gym post. The honest truth? I was overexercising. Very often, I get into a cycle of eating too much junk food, then exercising too much, then overeating again. I am very much aware of the issue, which in itself is something.
The motivational and materialistic PB present. I had got a PB during a 10km race so naturally treated myself. However, I had hated the race. It was a downhill race, with two uphill sections. I had sworn at the second uphill as I did not know about it. Note to self – check the race course online before running! I had been on track for a really really good PB, and yes I did get a PB, but not what I could have gotten midway through the race.
Dubai. So many words, so many emotions. Dubai was my home, being back in Dubai felt like home. I’m not sure if its the sunshine, sand or the heat, but it’s home. I loved being able to run on this track having seen so much about it. The house I grew up in, was about 5 minute walk from here. When I did live in Dubai, I remember struggling to run one length of the original beach.
This photo was staged, oh so very staged. My Mum is fully aware of my need for the perfect photo, she admittedly does help with the alignment. But she does also have plenty of photos of me standing on chairs or tables to get the height required for a perfect flatlay. The secret for this photo, as soon as this was taken, we put all the food onto our own plates and cleaned the fish tray. Although, we did have an infinite picnic, as this was round 1, with crisps, chocolate and more nibbles throughout the Wimbledon final.
For some reason I decided to sign up for a rowing regatta through work. I don’t row and am not overly coordinated. Driving to this session had been stressful, due to road works and I was very nearly late. Being late to something is a huge fear of mine and something I have to work at. After this rowing session, I left feeling stressed out and fairly glum. I couldn’t get the coordination or rhythm of the row. Update, by the end of the 12 weeks of training, I sort of got it!