On 2nd November, I will be flying to Burma with my work colleague Annie to participate in a 5 day cycle across Burma. A country of jungles, mountains and fertile plains, we will be riding through hot dry lowlands, passing small villages, teak plantations and rice paddies before tackling the long winding roads up into cooler jungle-clad hills. London to Brighton has been my only other experience of long distance cycling, except this time, I will be riding 400km over 5 days in the blistering Asian sun.
Why am I doing this? I want to help raise money for this incredible cause The Lucy Rayner Foundation. They do great work in raising awareness
of the signs and symptoms of depression and mental health problems in young adults and to provide support services in the community. Every £150.00 raised pays for 6 free counselling sessions for one person. This can make an enormous difference to that person who may have not had access or been able to afford this treatment. Please do take a look at the website for their full story that is told much better in their own words: https://thelucyraynerfoundation.com/about-the-lucy-rayner-foundation/
Raising awareness for mental health is particularly important to me because in my late teens / early 20's a close family member attempted suicide 5 times over a 4 year period. Although I did not fully understand the impact this had on me at the time, it is something I am still working through today - 16 years later. I am not ashamed to admit that I suffer from anxiety that has led to panic attacks over the last few years. I am a confident, happy person, fortunate enough to work for an incredible company who support me in being the best version of myself, but I can still be caught off guard by an overwhelming feeling of doom. It comes out of nowhere and it is not always stress related. In fact, I have only ever had a panic attack when I am at my most calm. Fortunately, I do have a much better understanding of my anxiety and the triggers associated with my panic attacks. It is not something that will be cured overnight but it certainly will not be something that controls my life.
Please help me to support this wonderful cause by sponsoring me to take on this crazy challenge!