Hello sixteen-year-old me again, it’s you six years on at twenty-two years of age and two years since I wrote to you for the first HMIY book. A lot has changed since then! But a lot has also stayed the same.
Dear My Undiagnosed Teenage Self,
Long time no see/speak. We last met when I opened some however-many-years-old journals for a couple of nice psychiatrists to examine. I featured some of the quotes in my novel; sorry to steal them from you. And every time I look at a picture of you, I just cringe. Firstly buddy, get rid of that awful side fringe. It doesn’t frame your face or flatter your puppy-fat chin, it makes your hair look flat. It looks awful. Seriously. Grow it out.
But that’s not the only thing I want to tell you today. I have some good news for you. You do have bipolar affective disorder! You’re not going crazy. All those years of agonising, confusion, recklessness and (well to be honest, an awesome as f**k, crazy, manic time), are over.
Hello Me, it's You…
I am writing to you not to warn you but to help you about what is to come in later life.
I know that are you are young and probably have nothing to worry about, it is probably just you and mum right now, but I will let you into a secret. When you are seven years old you will have your first half sibling. It will be weird but you will then go on to have six more by the time you are 23. Crazy right? One thing I must tell you is that you won’t get to see one of them, but we will talk about that later.
Hello Me, it’s you.
Welp, believe it or not it’s been quite a while since I last contacted you. The last we spoke, I was… just 20? I was just embarking on a Uni project with absolutely no clue of what it held in store for me.
Remember I gave you some advice, after dropping the bombshell that I’d finally been diagnosed with depression and anxiety? I still stand by it. Turns out teeny-bit-younger Han had an alright head on those shoulders. I’m going to use this opportunity to share some more pearls of wisdom and update you on my situation, sound ok?
Hello Me, it’s You.
I’m imagining that you’re in front of me. Instead of staring at a screen, I’m watching your fingers trace invisible lines on a table that sits between us. Your upper lip is scrunched, signalling that you’re uncomfortable, and my brows are furrowed in frustration. I imagine myself commenting that you, too, might furrow yours, if you had any. Perhaps you’d laugh. If you did, we’d sigh our relief. She’s not the enemy, we’d realise, and reach for our mugs of tea.
Hello Me, it's You
Welcome to the Hello Me, it’s You blog! We are launching this blog with weekly content from different contributors, giving their opinions and experiences on all things Mental Health.