Friday, 28 November 2014

The Role of Running.

And so it is confirmed, I have a charity place with Rethink Mental Illness to run the London Marathon!!! April 2015. All 26.2 Miles of it...

Don't get me wrong this is something I've really really wanted to do, although now I have a place to do it I'm a little bit terrified!!
However; being able to run for a charity that has so much relevancy in my life is a huge privilege in itself, regardless of the achievement it will be to reach that finishing line!!
And so the tough training begins...

Some people use running as a route to better fitness, a certain goal or race, for weight loss or general health benefits. Running has been something I have been able to use as a coping mechanism, a release if you like and a way to just 'run away' from all the thoughts going round in my head and to put my focus into something else.
Having the ability to be able to grab my trainers and my headphones and get caught up in the beautiful outdoor scenery, rain or shine, is something I consider a huge blessing. Whether I'm feeling overwhelmed, angry, stressed or beaming with happiness, running only ever makes me feel better, allows me to release the bad/painful emotions, even if only slightly. My glass returns to being half full after a run, (metaphorically of course!), and I wish I could explain the feeling it gives, everything else seems so insignificant when all my energy and focus is to 'just get to the top of this hill' and being able to enjoy the view once I get there! (Not so much the case in flat-as-a-pancake Felixstowe of course)

Granted it is not always easy to work up the motivation to go for a run however much I love it once out there, on those days where it is a massive achievement just getting out of bed going for a run can seem like the very last thing I want to do! Running plays a huge role in my life at the moment in terms of control, focus, determination and one of my coping mechanisms.
So I'm going to try and blog more often throughout my training for the Marathon, through the highs and the lows of it!

If you'd like to sponsor me please follow this link to my VirginMoneyGiving webpage! :) Thank you in advance for your encouragement, support and donations! :)

Sunday, 14 September 2014

NOT a holiday!!!

Half full optimism in Africa reduces to Half Empty Pessimism / Back to reality of the UK.

This summer I had the amazing opportunity to spend a month in Zambia!!!
Besides being absolutely awesome it was also very challenging both physically, mentally & emotionally.

My two weeks with Mission Direct - It was soooo lush to return to the same location, be recognised by the school children and see how things had changed & catch up with old friends! I was SO pleased that there were new people, some salvationists, some of the 2012 team and my school best friend!! We had an incredible team of about 20 and all worked really well together & got on so so well!!

One of the things I love about being in Africa is that I instantly feel at home, I'm completely myself and often a very different person to who I am in the UK!
Some of the things we experienced together were a shock to the system, emotional and others just purely life changing and amazing! - It's super difficult to come home and have no one who understands unless they have been there & seen it for themselves, we worked hard, we saw shocking scenes and emotionally connected with people and situations that have changed us but not everyone will want to hear it and try to understand.

After a whole month of being there, coming home has been a very big challenge for me. I'm still struggling to adjust and everyday that goes by I just want to take all my family and friends and go back to Africa!! I could go on and on about it forever but I'll leave you to ask questions about it if you're genuinely interested.

One thing I'm super excited to share with you is that whilst out there I met some families that have really touched my heart and I think about them everyday... Here are a few examples..
                             First of all Innocent, my boy from 2012. Still as sweet as ever!!
                   Innocent's Auntie Dorcus & cousin Abigail (Now my goddaughter!!) Dorcus is 21 years old, we are keeping in touch & I really hope that she can get to do the education she really hopes to achieve!! Love this little family to the moon and back!
               Finally, Emma Maddern, Hannah Watchorn & Myself are now sponsoring these 3 children who have now just started school!!! After visiting and praying for their bed-bound mother and being touched by their story & knowing they were unable to afford school, we were unable to leave them and not do anything about it!! Love our little sponsor Family!

                              Natasha. 10yrs old.
                          Innocent (A different one than I spoke of earlier). 6yrs old.
                         Bianca. 9yrs old.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Depression - there! I said it!!

The news of Robin Williams has hit the worldwide news pretty hard!! 
An inspirational and amazing actor that many of us will never forget! 

The main news headline regarding his death? 'It was Suicide'. 

Realising that actually I've never 'labeled it' in my blog, just highlights the fear of stigma, being labeled & the scary thought of people knowing, thus judging, that I have. 
So here goes...
I am a depression sufferer. 
Therefore I have some understanding (to a certain extent as all experiences are different!!) how Robin may have been feeling. Comments of how much money, a loving family & a stable career he had have nothing to do with his mental health, and maybe one day people will understand this without the torture of experiencing it first! 
Maybe the worst part is when people say 'you'll be fine' or 'stay positive' when there's not a bone in your body or an ounce of energy left in you to actually believe or do that! 

I've felt a bit like the british weather recently, very up & down. There doesn't seem to be an inbetween for me, either I'm high on life acknowledging how blessed I am and the love that surrounds me, or I'm in a dark pit of what seems like oblivion; exhausted and hopeless. 

In all honesty, it often feels as though I'm walking through this horrible dark, cold tunnel... Then I see the light at the end!!!! - But it turns out to be a train. 
At least using this analogy of a tunnel can show some positive sign... That train gas to come from somewhere, meaning there is a way out! I just need to have the strength to get there!! 

The point of this post is that we shouldn't have to wait for celebrities etc to be defeated by depression to talk about it and start acknowledging it! It shouldn't have to be a taboo and sufferers like myself shouldn't have to be ashamed of it or be afraid of the stigma!! 

Only our population have the power to change it - so what are we waiting for?! 

Saturday, 9 August 2014

I am...?

I kicked off my super duper summer with one of my favourite weeks of the year - Territorial Music School!! (Which has come & gone waaaay too quickly!!) 

Not only was it a very fun week spent with these beautiful gals
but also a very challenging week both physically & emotionally!! 
The theme was 'I am...' which has had me thinking ever since - who am I?! Who is Sabrina Waters, what makes me, me? What am I? and what does that name mean to other people?!

If there is one thing I can say for certain it is that I AM extreeeeemely blessed!!! Without a doubt! 
I wish I was able to spend mooore time with my TMS family, each and every one of them are incredible people! 

I'm now lying under my mosquito net in Zambia listening to the TMS2014 soundtrack. Here my eyes and heart are constantly being opened to more & more realities & challenges!! 
Life here is super different and as much as I can't wait to be home to tell everyone all about it, I'm very much dreading what effects returning to reality is going to have on me!! 

Very excited for the rest of my time here though :)))


Friday, 4 July 2014

'Share My Yoke'

Almost a whole year since my last blog post but I'm finally ready to post another one.

Those of you who have been close to me this year will know what a tough year it has been even though I've had amazingly wonderful friends and family right there to support me, it's not been an easy road!! 

Recently I heard a recording of my big brother playing the song 'Share My Yoke' as a solo. 
Thinking more and more about the words in this song (as well as having some rather obvious things pointed out to me in hindsight by my closest friends) it made me want to share with you via my blog that actually, it's okay to lean on other people, it's okay to need help sometimes and not be able to take it all on your own, to share your burdens with other people because if they are true friends then they want to help, even if it's just talking things through with someone over the phone or having a good cry every now and again!! 

Apprehensive to admit this...but the reality is that if I hadn't trusted and confided in certain people (the right people) when I was at my lowest I'm really unsure where I would be today!! I know too well the effects of ignoring your own problems and not sharing them with someone you trust as well as trying to help others around you and take on their problems. As human beings we're very good at pretending that everything is fine, not wanting to look weak or pathetic by talking to others about what we find tough etc. but also as human beings, our problem-masking nature really only leads to self destruction. 

If there's one thing I've learned this year it's who really are my close friends and that people wouldn't offer to 'Share the Yoke' if they didn't want to or care, I'm so blessed and thankful that I have a wonderful family and incredible friends who are always there for me, even when my thoughts lead me to think they aren't!! I absolutely cannot wait to see and spend a whole week with some of these friends in a few weeks time!!!

So I'll leave you with this... 
When you're tired and nothing's going right for you...
When you've lost everything that seemed so sure...
When you're alone and isolation increases day by day...
When closest friends can seem a thousand miles away...
Share your Yoke!!