3 Surprising Advantages My Life Gave Me After My breakdown.

Naomi Sturrock-Whitehead
8 min readFeb 8, 2021

Photo by brut carniollus on Unsplash

If you haven’t taken stock of your life, you need to do it immediately.

When my youngest child was only six weeks old, I had a breakdown. The impact of having a fourth child was so great; I wish I had gone into this next phase with my eyes wide open. Instead, I was stumbling around in the dark, unknowingly damaging all of those around me.

The tension had been building for years; it was just I had paid no attention. The depression I was feeling increased; I didn’t know who I was or where I was going in life. I was a stay at home mum that struggled daily to get through the day. If I had one day without suicidal thoughts, I considered it a mediocre day.

This dark phase of my life stood me in good stead for the future years; it made me a better person. It was such a difficult stage of my life, one I will never forget, nor would I ever want to. I find it difficult to reflect on those past events, yet it is necessary and conducive to my self-awareness and personal growth.

I would forgive you for thinking that I am still a crazy old lady for claiming that my breakdown was an instigating factor in my recovery. But the advantages have led to having had a profound impact on me and the way I now live my life. Here are a few of the key factors:

Advantage 1: Self-care

“Just when you feel you have no time to relax, know that this is the moment you most need to make time to relax.”
Matt Haig, Reasons to Stay Alive

It has taken so long to eradicate feelings of guilt every time I do something for myself. It doesn’t even need to cost any money either. I have lost count of the number of times I would feel guilty just because I took time to relax in a bath, do a facemask, paint my nails or read a book.

Of course, anytime I took time for myself, got sabotaged by one or all of the kids.

Those ten minutes I wanted to steal from the day to enhance my thoughts and raise my self-worth only resulted in the crashing and burning of my soul. I almost always felt crushed, suffocated and down-trodden. What had I done to deserve such a shitty life?

Naomi Sturrock-Whitehead

Learning how to play the game of life and making it worthwhile.