The Mumbelievables #9: Amy Stevens
This Mumbelievables interview is possibly my favourite yet. Not to take anything whatsoever away from the incredible women who have featured so far, but this one I guess is particularly close to my heart and carries such important messages around mental health and learning to build a healthy relationship with ourselves so we can take care of us.
That’s why I’m so thrilled to introduce the gorgeous, courageous and incredibly inspirational Amy Stevens who blogs at Amy’s Boarderline World. She’s a self-confessed yoga-obsessed mummy who suffers with mental health issues including Borderline personality disorder, anorexia and depression. She says she blogs in the hope she can help and inspire others, which she does in abundance. If you haven’t come across Amy’s writing before, go check her out. Her honesty, bravery and insight run through every piece she publishes, and the work she is doing to open up a dialogue around mental health is something this world needs more of. Enjoy her interview!
Who are you? What makes you, you?
I am a mummy, wife and woman fighting a daily battle with my mental health issues. I suffer with BPD, depressions, anorexia and anxiety. I have experienced what people call rock bottom and almost succeeded at taking my own life. My last attempt 13 months ago changed my life forever. I fight everyday for me, my son and my family but also for all those out there who are also struggling.
If someone else was to sum you up in five words, what do you think those words would be?
As much as I find this sooooo uncomfortable I have asked friends and they have said; Inspirational, brave, kind, caring and great mum.
Who are the three most important people in your life, and why?
The two most important people in my life are my son and my husband. They are what I live for and no matter how bad I feel, they always seem to make things better again. And third – I cannot believe I am saying this but – ME! After hating myself and feeling completely worthless for so many years I am now able to see that I am important. Not only as a mummy and wife but to my family, friends and to all the people out there who read my blog
What are the most important things in your life and why?
My health. After the years of anorexia and suicide attempts I have done some serious damage to my health, physically and mentally. Although I am not ‘better’ I am working very hard on my recovery everyday. The healthier I am the better mummy I can be and the more I enjoy time with my son.
My blog is also important; it’s a therapy for me. It’s cathartic and helps me in times of difficulty. I also love that it helps others who are or have been in similar situations.
What does confidence mean to you?
Confidence for me is something that I have never truly had. I faked it really well but never really felt it. I still don’t really now. Confidence to me means receiving a point of acceptance. Learning to love yourself, inside and out. Trying not to let others opinion effect you. Doing what feels right, having faith in yourself.
How do you feel about yourself now compared to before you became a mum?
I have come on quite a journey over the past few years and the main differences are trying not to worry what other people think of me. I feel stressed still but I am much calmer when it comes to my son. I trust my own judgment a lot more and I am learning to love myself! I am an absolute perfectionist but I have learnt not to sweat the small stuff so much anymore. Who cares if I haven’t hoovered this week. Who cares if the bloody cushions haven’t been plumped! If my son is happy that’s all that matters!
What advice would you give to someone who doubts herself?
DON’T! Please just don’t! I’ve wasted so many years of my life doubting and not trusting myself. In the last year I took the plunge and 100% trusted myself about on a major life decision. Do you know what? I was right and it was the best decision I ever made! It felt so empowering. I had never done it before. I was also so terrified to be wrong or be ridiculed. If you are someone that always doubts herself then please start to trust yourself. Even if it’s something small. Confide in someone you trust first if it helps, then go for it!
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned in your life so far?
Oh this is such a tough one as I have learnt so much, especially these past few years. I guess what stands out for me is trusting myself, not worrying what others think of me and believing I deserve to be happy. I am allowed to make mistakes. I am allowed to put myself first. I am allowed to give my opinions. It’s all a work in progress but I am definitely feeling I am giving it a good go!
And finally, where is your happy place?
My happy place is where ever I can be with my son and husband. It doesn’t matter where. We can be on holiday, at the local park or out for lunch. Just being together just the three of us is true happiness to me.
You can read more of Amy’s brilliant perspectives on her blog www.amysboarderlineworld.com.