6 January 2014

And the award goes to...

Being a typical Brit, I don't like to blow my own trumpet, so it's nice when someone else does it for me.

In December, I received an email from a fellow blogger ('Emily'), who also writes about OCD and anxiety, saying she had nominated me for a Blog of the Year 2013 award. Alyson Sheldrake, an artist based in Portugal, set up this scheme, which encourages people to share details of blogs they enjoy. I was delighted that Emily valued mine enough to include it amongst her nominations.

The award requires me to select my own favourite blog or blogs - there is no limit - which presented me with something of a dilemma: I'm hopelessly indecisive and there is a lot of good writing out there. Although I follow blogs on a variety of topics, I decided to narrow it down, by selecting from those chiefly concerned with mental health issues, in line with my own. 

I also decided to nominate just one, but did want to mention two others.

Image courtesy of Simon Howden/FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The first is Emily's own blog, Dreams to be anxiety free. She writes very openly and her post on intrusive thoughts about paedophilia was particularly moving and courageous. It's not an easy thing to admit to, but I'm sure that, in doing so, she will have achieved her aim of helping others.

The site ocdtalk, which provides the perspective of a mother of a child with OCD, is also excellent. The posts are informative and a good resource for both sufferers and their carers/families.

My current favourite blog, though, is that run by Tina Fariss Barbour, called Bringing along OCD

Not only do Tina and I share a surname, but we are both writers, suffering from OCD and anxiety. Tina also experiences depression.

What I love about her blog is that it covers many other aspects of her life, in Altavista, Virginia, USA, including: her work as a reporter on a small-town, weekly newspaper; her relationship with her lovely, supportive husband, Larry; and the activities of their beautiful cat, Chase Bird. All of these posts contribute to provide a context for her mental health battles.

Her descriptions are detailed and charming and create a vivid picture of her home, her town and her lifestyle, which are so very different from my own. Tina and I may live nearly 4,000 miles apart, but it feels as if she is a friend just around the corner.

I hope that you will take the opportunity to check out these blogs and that you will enjoy them as much as I do. 


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the mention, Helen, and I enjoy your blog also. I think you made a great choice, as I also love Tina's blog. I feel as if I truly know her through reading it. Wishing you all the best in 2014!

Tina Fariss Barbour said...

Helen, you may receive this message three times-I have had a silly time getting one to go through. But I want to say thank you SO much for your kind and sweet words and for the award. It's wonderful to have supportive friends like you. And thank you for all YOU do for mental health/illness awareness and understanding. Yours is a strong voice.

Helen Barbour said...

Thanks, ocdtalk - wishing you a Happy New Year, too, and I look forward to your future blog posts.

Helen Barbour said...

Thanks, Tina, I only received your message once, so please don't worry. Thank you, also, for your lovely words of support. There is certainly a great mental health community out there, supporting each other, sharing experiences and informing others.

Emily Benet said...

Brilliant news! I'm so pleased to hear your lovely news :)

Helen Barbour said...

Thanks, Emily. As I've said before - and will, no doubt, say again! - I couldn't have done it without your great blogging workshop to get me started. Which I would have said, if I'd had the chance to make an acceptance speech...