Rona Foy: what recovery means to me

17th April 2018

In the 50th contribution to this popular series, Rona Foy, participant in the Making Recovery Real in Dundee project and film, tells us what recovery means to her.

‘Recovery means the world to me’

When you go through the pain of anxiety and depression it is horrendous. But coming out of it you have a different attitude and way of thinking. Recovery means getting back to the person I want to be. I am able to be a lot more independent. I live in my own home and take more responsibility for my life. I feel able to handle things and have a more positive outlook.

Recovery is not going back to the person you were. This may sound odd but if I had not gone through what I had I would not be the person I am today. I went through a lot, and while I am not saying that I am glad I did, I survived it. More than that I am now a stronger person and feel that I am much more knowledgeable and aware of myself and others. I know right away if I start to feel bad, so I get back to the tools I use to feel better and keep my recovery going.

Being able to help other people in their recovery is a big part of my recovery. I have been able to use my insight, knowledge and understanding to help others in their recovery journey. Knowing we are not alone really helps. The more I am involved in peer support the more I am getting back to trusting my gut instincts. This helps my recovery and shows others that they have the knowledge themselves to recover. It’s amazing how much people appreciate you being there and sharing your experiences.

I have been involved in peer support in the acute in-patient wards at Carseview. It is great when the nursing staff see me differently – not as an ill person but one who has recovered and can support others in their recovery. Recently I was talking with someone in Carseview who was expressing feelings that I had had when I was in hospital. I didn’t tell anyone so it was great that this person could tell me and know they are not the only one feeling like that.

I have just completed the Peer2Peer course. It was fantastic experience. I learnt loads and really enjoyed working with the others on the course. I think it is one of the best courses you can do. It really emphasises that peer support is an equal relationship where no-one is the boss. The peer supporter is a guide. Everyone is their own expert but I can use my understanding and insight to help people find and trust their own expertise.

Watch more of Rona’s story in the Making Recovery Real in Dundee film

Read other contributions to the ‘what recovery means to me’ series

Rona is also a graduate of Peer2Peer training