Went to a Christmas party, got chatting, had a few drinks, decided to jump out of an aeroplane. That's about the long and short of it!
On 28th July, I have agreed to do a SkyDive (in tandem) in order to raise as much money as possible.
It would be quite selfish to deny that it's obviously going to be a great experience for me personally, but having the opportunity to raise money for the cause adds all the more motivation.
Mental health is something that affects a staggering amount of people, not just those that have been diagnosed, but those that spend so much of their life suffering in silence, not realising they are dealing with issues that they require help with.
It's this latter issue that I hold close, having first hand experience of so many people that had absolutely no idea that they were dealing with mental illness themselves and just chalking things off as a phase, or purely something they need to 'get over'..
In particular, men are notoriously bad at opening up about their feelings and emotions.
In the last 12-18 months, I have personally seen and read first hand just how many men have opened up and shared how they feel and have been really taken back by the numbers, but also the support offered by others around them.
Us guys being more closed off emotionally is often joked about by our female counterparts - for good reason, of course as we are pretty simple creatures! - but this in fact hides a much darker problem, that a lot of men are worried about really opening up to the fact they may be suffering, or have been suffering mental issues (for many years in some cases) and have kept quiet through fear of being judged as being weak or flat out playing down the issue, thinking it's just something they 'man up and get on with'.
Depression and Mental Illness doesn't care about race, age or sex and is pretty non-discriminatory about who it affects and when.
Mind are a charity which offers support for people suffering mental health issues to people from all walks of life, through all sorts of circumstances and situations, offering somewhere to get help and offer advice on services and support.
South East and Central Essex Mind are my local affiliated Charity and it's for these guys that I will be doing this jump.
It would be great if I could raise my target (and maybe more!), but if this page even nudges just 1 person into going to seek advice, then it would be worth it.
I really appreciate your time and donations