Is this the real life? Or is it just fantasy? 

“You never know what’s going on behind closed doors.” 

How true is this statement?

On my Instagram, I receive some lovely, uplifting messages about how happy our life looks.

Yes, we have our downs as well as our ups, but who doesn’t? But do we always share our downs? I know I don’t. They get swept under the carpet and I put a brave face on and face the world.

So here I am, sharing the lows as well as the highs…

A while ago, I was diagnosed with depression. Something that I’ve only really shared with close friends and family. I am attending counselling sessions to help me through it, as I would like to stay off antidepressants if I can.

I’m yet to figure out where it has stemmed from, or what has caused it, but as I continue along the journey,  I have figured out what makes it worse.

Sweeping things under the carpet – this definitely does not help. It has taken me some time to learn that a problem shared is a problem halved.

Comparing – I have found myself comparing my life, weight, everything to other Mums on Instagram. Until I realised that, like me, most of them are probably only sharing what they want people to see! Their perfectly clean and tidy home probably has a pile of dirty dishes out of the shot. The trim mum with the 6 pack probably has as many body hangups as I do. It’s not always ‘real life’ and all is definitely not as it seems!

Admitting it – I felt down for quite a while before I actually decided to do anything about it. It took a lot for me to walk in to my gp and say how I felt. I cried, I felt silly, but by admitting it I got the support I needed!

As I sat with my counsellor today, we laughed together. To her, I have everything a lot of 26 year olds would want! I have a hard working and supportive husband, a beautiful, clever and loving child, a wonderful family and extended family, a nice house, a nice car and a steady job. So what is there to be sad about?

Well, that’s just it. Happiness can’t be measured by the things, or the people, we have in our life.

I think, in a world that has gone social media crazy,  that’s what we need to remember. Just because somebody seems to have it all, doesn’t mean they do. Behind those little squares is real life and it isn’t always as picture perfect as it looks.

Having depression and anxiety is hard at the best of times, I’m sure! But having it as a parent is really tough. There are days when I can barely rustle up the energy to get myself ready, never mind get Adam ready and try and make the day fun for him too! But part of my job as a mother is to make him happy. How can I do that when I feel so low?

I just have to get up and get on with it, as hard as it may be. I have to continue to post uplifting pictures that show that everything is ok. Because that’s what I want my boy to remember; the mum who, while fighting her own battles, put him first and continued living life to the full. 

And that’s what I’ll continue to do. So for those of you who think my life is ‘perfect’, there is no such thing. You have to create your own version of perfect that is personal to you, not what is deemed perfect by the rest of the world.

Emma xx

If anybody is feeling low more often than not, please speak to somebody. Whether it be a friend, family member, or a health care professional. There is help out there in many varieties, all you have to do is ask xx


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