If we go back to July (it seems so long ago!) you may recall me writing about dragging success out of the jaws of defeat during my first visit to the Frank Bruno Foundation. Today I attended the presentation for those of us who have most recently completed a programme delivered by the foundation. I took part in the first blue light card programme funded by the blue light card foundation, and I am very grateful to the foundation for providing the opportunity.
Part of the success is that as most of us work shifts we are welcome to attend what we can of the 8 weeks because it’s incredibly unlikely that we will be able to get a rota that will enable us to attend all of the sessions. I managed several and they have included laughter, tears, a week were I banged my head and still carry the bruising we know I am clumsy! And the week where I went straight from a night shift with no breakfast and did myself no favours!
I have gained so much in those few short weeks not least the ability to admit to people that I have PTSD and it does of course bring issues with it. Previously something only a very tiny circle of people knew about and I would brush over with I have struggles with mental health and move the conversation on.
Maybe the timing was right, the happenings of the last 2 years and the loss of dad, with support I find myself in a place where I understand that I deserve the same care as those I care for and those I give my time to help and support. 8 years of therapy haven’t gotten me there, I add here that I don’t dismiss my amazing counsellor because what she has achieved means I am still here at all.
I definitely need to work on what looking after me means because having never done it I don’t really know how.
So the presentation does not mark the end but the beginning, the beginning of how I learn to put me first, this will include continuing to attend The Frank Bruno Foundation and today as I enquired about what I thought that would look like, the very lovely Tracey made an alternative suggestion and so next week I will start my next step.
It will definitely include dropping in when I can to see the people who welcomed me on that first Friday morning, who have no expectations from me and don’t care if I am grumpy, happy, there for me or them, because as we check in on each other and chat, my mood always lifts and I will at some point start to laugh. Priceless.
So, my advice would be, if you have the chance, go along, drop in and see what you can find for you.
What else have I done this week, meetings including the latest catch up with the Children’s Coaching Collaborative, another great session around the importance of listening to the voice of the child, including considering how article 12 of the UN Convention and The Rights of the Child, something I have worked with for a long time, but looking at with a different twist for sport and the coaching experience.
This will see me attend a workshop run by UNICEF UK hosted by the Play Their Way movement on the rights of the child.