Lol's tip: give them time
Emails and text messages from friends and loved ones played a significant role when I struggled with my mood and mental health which eventually spiralled down into clinical depression. These are often regarded as small things but can make such a difference to someone who feels isolated and has lost the confidence to interact with others.
Confidence was something I had in abundance until my depression struck and then, as with most people, my confidence left me without warning. I was working as a mental health nurse at the time with a clinical caseload of clients with a range of mental health conditions. I suppose that was the irony of it all.
I would sit in my office and dread the ring of the telephone, or the knock on the door. My confidence had all but deserted me. And yet with composure to answer my text messages, or the time to read an email, I would feel much better, more reassured.
A simple text saying ‘How are you?’ would make such a difference. It gave me the opportunity to respond in whatever way I wanted, it opened the door to communicating if I wanted to. Essentially it showed me that people care.
Counselling, medication, and support all played their part in my recovery but it was a slow journey and if I have a choice it is a journey I would not wish to make again.
One of the most profound touches came in the form of a small ‘Get Well Soon’ card sent to me by a service user. It said ‘You were an angel to me when I was ill, I hope this goes some way to repaying this kindness’. It certainly did.