When I left the Emirates Stadium after watching Arsenal vs West Ham on Saturday, March 7, I left the ground with a bit sad knowing that I wouldn’t see my team for a little while because our next scheduled home match wasn’t for nearly a month.
It was also very sad, because coming to the Emirates to watch Arsenal play was my way of dealing with my mental health.
It’s weird how much life has changed since that final whistle went after the Arsenal vs West Ham game.
The things we once took for granted, popping to the shops for treats, being able to go to pub to meet your friends, and of course sports for us to enjoy, have been removed in the bid to fight coronavirus.
My mental health has taken a hit since lockdown
As someone who has autism in a form, Asperger syndrome, I’m used to some sort of routine and order - but that’s just not the case anymore.
My mental health since the lockdown has taken such a big hit and this time I’m not able to use my coping strategies this time.
I live in a seaside town and one of the things I miss is being able to walk around the beach hearing the sea and the seagulls. But one of my biggest regrets at the moment is not being able to go to the Emirates Stadium to cheer on our beloved Arsenal.
I miss Arsenal and friends - I even miss moaning about VAR
I miss moaning about VAR and how it’s affects the game we all love. But most of all I miss being able to see my friends at the Emirates Stadium.
Some days I really struggle with my mental health. To be honest it’s hard when everything that we once took for granted is now out of reach for the time being, but I believe the lockdown is the right thing to do to protect us.
Thank you to the NHS and our carers
I want to thank our hardworking and amazing NHS, careers and key workers who are helping to keep the UK on course to beat this Coronavirus outbreak.
As people know if you follow me on social media @JakeCoare14 I like to speak openly about my mental health and having autism I normally on speak when I’m over a mental health issue.
It’s ok to ask someone for help
However, I feel I need to be open with people about my struggles with my depression and anxiety to show it’s ok to ask someone for help with my mental health issues - whether its a family member, a friend, a loved one, the mental health service, or mental health charities - because it’s important that we look out for each other at this scary and difficult time.
I’ve had to stop watching the news because of my anxiety. It’s making me have sleepless nights to be honest. I’m scared of what’s happening at the moment and I’m not ashamed to admit that. I miss being able to see my family and my friends who I miss greatly - but I know this lockdown is the thing to protect us and I have no plans to break this lockdown.
Don’t suffer in silence – support is out there
So if you suffer from mental health issues there is support out there - please don’t suffer in silence.
I would like to again thank our hardworking and amazing NHS who are putting their lives at risk each day to save others – as well as careers who are looking after the most vulnerable people at this scary time. And the key-workers keeping the United Kingdom moving.
We’ll Meet Again…
I want to leave this article with an amazing quote from the Queen that is keeping me going because one day soon we will back at the Emirates Stadium cheering on our beloved Arsenal football club:
“We will succeed and that success will belong to every one of us.
“We should take comfort that while we may have more still to endure, better days will return.
“We will be with our friends again.
“We will be with our families again.
“We will meet again!”
PS Here are useful numbers if anyone wants help during these difficult times. Please feel free to share.
Childline: 0800 1111
Samaritans: 116 123
Domestic Violence Hotline: 0808 2000 247
The Survivors Trust: 0808 801 0181
Mind: 0300 123 3393
Age UK: 0800 169 6565
Calm 0800 58 58 58