Losing Mum and Dad – Depression, Mental Health and Grieving

Aged 17 losing Dad to Lung Cancer and aged 21 losing Mum to Alcoholism, there’s no way I thought I’d ever get over the loss of my parents. I always said to myself, if my Mum died, I’d never be able to cope. My Dad tried his hardest to keep me at comfort by telling me everything, and preparing me for the day he finally left us, but with Mum, there was no preparation, so I was in denial that it would even ever happen.

With Dad, I didn’t really have any idea of how to grieve, I suffered with severe depression, I couldn’t hold a job down, the responsibility of taking over everything he had was just too much. I’d drink heavily, self harm, comfort eat, cry myself to sleep most nights and even attempted suicide three times. I had no tactic or way to distract myself from the hurt and the pain. I used to write him letters expressing how hurt I was, then feel bad for writing negative things and rip up the letter and start again and pretend everything was ok to make him proud. I hated myself at the time, he was a proud Dad, and the thought of him seeing me in that way just ate away at me daily.

I’m not sure I have ever got over the loss of my Dad, I’ve not tried, and I still hold his ashes to this day.

With Mum, I was in Birmingham at the time and received a phone call to say that she had been taken in to hospital and was in a bad way, she was an hour away in Wellingborough, so I made my way over to be with her. It was the worst I had ever seen her, she was frail and just looked straight through me, this hurt. It was as if she didn’t know who I was. I didn’t know what to do, wether to comfort her and show my true feelings, give her cuddles and tell her how much I loved her, or be angry and try to make her realise what she was doing to herself and her loved ones. I think I was in denial as much as she was.

Looking back now, I should’ve got help with how to deal with someone addicted to alcohol, I could’ve maybe helped her more.

The last day, she laid there on the hospital bed with a machine keeping her alive, there was nothing more that could’ve been done to save her. I just remember looking at the poor nurses and thinking they could do more and they could save her, but when they asked if we all felt ok with them ‘letting her go’ they just wanted her at peace. We couldn’t keep her in pain forever. I watched her take her last breath, with her sons and family around her. She looked beautiful, just as she always did.

Everything after that was a bit of a blur, I knew I had to distract myself this time and be as strong as I possibly could. There was a funeral to make perfect, I still had bills to pay, a house to run and to not let myself get to the point I did when my Dad passed away. I turned to photography, I bought my first camera, and just went out and photographed anything I could find. It was arty, and my Mum loved art, she’d have been proud.

Every night, it would hit me. When the world goes quiet and your in bed ready to switch off. I’d sob. My partner would comfort me the best he could and tell me to put the telly on to distract me, but I’d always be scared that there’d be something relatable come up and it would make it worse. So we turned to comedy. I’d have four choices that always made everything feel better. Jason Manford, Live at the Manchester Apollo, Michael McIntyre Hello Wembley, The Big Bang Theory or anything Lee Mack related. Anything to make me laugh would just work.

Now 8 years later, I still write Mum and Dad letters. I have two children to be the best Mum I can be to. And to this day I still use comedy to get me through hard times.

If anyone has lost someone they loved and are struggling to grieve, I will always be there to chat with or try my best to help the best I can.

Here’s a few contact details where you can seek help.

MIND – Help with Mental health issues and anyone struggling with addiction and Alcoholism

Sue Ryder – Help with Grieving

Please don’t just sit and hope the feeling will just go away, get as much help and support as possible, and surround yourself with positive people always!

What’s Going Through My Head Right Now!

So, I’m back!

This post is going to be super random, it’s an on the spot one, no planning, no pre shot pictures, literally just rolling out the camera roll.

It’s been a good few months, and Oh My God, things have changed! Let me fill you in before I crack on with my weird thoughts…

As most people know in 2017 I decided to take the plunge in to becoming a MUA. I’d been doing make up now and again since 2010 one shoots anyway, but never really thought about going pro. I did a course in 2015, started doing friends make up and here I am, with a budding and successful new business venture.

I have started having lip fillers by Jo Boyton, as my lips were one of my biggest insecurities. I plan to have another ml or more in June. I’ve had micro blading done by Laura Lou Gray, I went for the ombré style, this means hairstroke to shading .. I think? But on my god, I love my brows, and I hated them so, so much before.

Wedding photography bookings have more than quadrupled in the past 8 months, meaning starting from the end of this month, I’ll be shooting 2-4 weddings per week, and being part of couples biggest days of their lives. I’m happy with that!

What else has happened?! I have a new car! My Mini broke, I bought a dodgy BMW, now I’m in the soft top Audi club.

I have new hair! (Separate blog post coming up) but I’ve gone from black/grey to platinum blonde/grey, and I love it. All thanks to Hair By Jess…

Anyway, on with the thoughts…

I was doing the school run, and was looking around at all of the mums, just thinking ‘I wonder if they overthink things as much as I do’ So as I do, I spoke my thoughts and said to my friend Jess, I wish I wasn’t so weird, why can’t I just be one of these normal Mums’

They all look so normal! I wonder if they lay awake at night tossing and turning because they’re thinking too much and can’t shut down. I wonder if they ‘have’ to sleep on their partners side of the bed when they’re working night shifts because they might sleep better. I wonder if they iron every single piece of clothing in their household, or what if they don’t iron at all? Ya see, things like this bug me, and I find myself odd.

Do they look at me and think the same? Who even is normal these days and what is normal? I’ve had massive insecurity issues, and I’ll admit, I still do now, I still feel massively self conscious, but does everybody? To the extent that I do?

But then how do I feel insecure, if I can go three days out of 7 with wearing no make up at all, go to the shop with no bra on, pyjamas under my coat? Do other Mum’s do this?

I want so many answers to so many things. I want to know how to get rid of certain memories. And how to remember other memories for as long as I possibly can. Do other people struggle holding a full conversation when they have things on their mind, like I’ll just shut down, do a little mumble, agree and change the subject, people must think I’m a right sausage!

I honestly think I have about 4 people in this world that I can express my weird thoughts to, my besties and my fella, I know they’ll never judge, as much as I’m probably telling my readers right now and you’re all judging nine ways to Sunday haha! Maybe I’ll get some answers…

So there you go, I’m sure as soon as I post this I’ll think of more odd thoughts that I could’ve posted. Other than that, I’m happy and content at the moment, no drama, no negativity and no toxic people around me. I’m in happy land right now.

Peace out 💕

Hannah S.C x

Links

Microblading – Laura Lou Gray

Hair – Hair By Jess

Instagram – Hannah Smith Chilton

Wedding Instagram – Weddings By Hannah Smith Chilton

How I keep motivated!

So NYD 2017 I set myself a goal of losing 5 stone by 2018, I can proudly say I am now 2 stone in with 3 to go! Its been a long ride, with the diet I’m on, my weight can go up and down very easily. Being on a very low calorie diet, I put myself in to a state of ketosis, so when I do eat food, I end up with a lot of water retention. I have only researched this recently as I was wondering why the hell I put on 6lbs in 24 hours after a small plate of party food. Apparantly its something to do with sodium and salt intake (or something or other)… 

Anyway… As I have stuck to the exersize and dieting, I have noticed results…looking in the mirror, I’m seeing smaller hips and a smaller waist, my legs and bum are more defined than the wobbly state they were in before, and my arms are now more in shape than looking like a couple of aubergines attached to my body. This is what keeps me going!
The measurements, rather than the weight. I noticed my weightloss had stopped, and I decided to measure instead, to find I had lost 7 INCHES!! This felt awesome, to know that I have been building the muscle and losing the fat, when I thought I was at a standstill with it all just makes you keep going. 
 

So 4 months in, I would say I have dropped 2 dress sizes, lost 2 stone and 7.5 inches down all over. 
I’ll go over my routine, and what I eat etc again, so if you want to do the same, you can!

I have now tweaked my diet, so I only eat and snack between 10am and 6pm, and out of these hours I fast. 


7am-10am
– I would have drank 1 litre of water

10am – Forza Shake It Slim time! (vanillas my favourite!) followed by 250mls water. 

11am – Forza T5 Super Strength  for a pre workout boost! 

In this time, I aim to burn 500 calories on the cross trainer, this used to take me 54 minutes, and now only takes me 34 minutes, which is a huge improvement. I then do 3 sets of 10 squats with my barbell, followed by some arm exercises and 3 sets of 60 second planking to target my ab area.
1pm – 2pm – I’ll be guzzling that water again (1litre)
3pm – Forza Shake it Slim time again… 
4pm – 5pm – Another litre of water goes down! 
6pm – A 250 calorie meal, so this will be soup, cod or chicken breast as I’m a fussy eater… I’ll mix this with my favourite vegetables to get as many nutrients as I can. 
***I am in no way a health expert and do not recommend this way of dieting to anybody. This is just my way of losing the weight I need to lose. Please seek medical advice before starting any diet, and make sure the choices and options are right for you.***
To get yourself a nice little discount on these ultra low calorie meal replacement shakes and supplements use code AMB10 when ordering! 

CLICK HERE TO BUY!

Fat To Flat | My First Week With Forza Supplements

Day 1 – 

Waking up at 6am is never easy for me, but with two under 5’s, a lay in is not an option. I knew today was going to be a big day though, so out of bed, get the children ready for school and settle them down with their Coco Pops. 

7am soon came and it was time for my first Shake It Slim, they honestly taste so good. The vanilla shakes taste just like melted ice cream, better than any meal replacement shake I’ve tasted. I then dropped the children at school, and set out for a run. I knew I was aiming for 3 miles, and thats what I did. It was tough, my chest hurt a little after and I felt like I had ripped all kinds of muscles under my ribs, but oddly my legs felt fine. It was a good run! 

12pm came, and it was time for another shake, this time I chose strawberry. The strawberry taste like those American shakes that taste again all Ice Creamy… Nom Nom Nom…

By 2pm, all the family were home, children playing, and Danny my other half decides to pop on some food/recipe videos on YouTube, you know, the ones that make you drool and froth from the mouth..Haha! After dribbling at the telly for an hour, it was 3pm and time for a small meal. I was feeling lazy today, so an egg and spinach protein pot from Aldi seemed ideal. 

Honestly, I feel amazing! I feel full of energy, chatty, not droopy in the slightest, I feel great. 
Lets see if I still feel the same tomorrow… 
Day 2 – 

Today is a Saturday, and still I am up at 6am!! Not happy… I wake up, jump out of bed, get ready for my day (make up takes an hour!), and make my shake, went for chocolate this morning, delicious! 

A morning of editing some photography for clients while being mum at the same time and I almost forgot to take my second shake on time at 12pm, but I did, and Strawberry it was, my second favourite flavour. 

I didn’t feel too well in the afernoon, so I prepared food for the family for the evening, then taken a long, hot bath and got straight in to my pyjamas at a nice early 4pm. 

No third meal for me today, as I wasn’t very hungry, so I had a third Shake It Slim. I haven’t felt hungry all day today. I will be honest though, I woken up in the middle of last night with major sweet cravings and had myself a little bit of chocolate. I felt awful for it after as I never eat in the night, but it satisfied my cravings, and I was back to sleep. 

So now, It’s 8pm, I’m having myself a white wine spritzer with soda water, and still not hungry but feeling great! 
So far so good!!! 
Day 3 –
I have been dreading today, it’s usually Sunday roast day, whatever shall I do. I’m not gonna lie my Sunday dinners are the best in the land, and I’m going to miss out, but think of those pounds I will shed.

Anyway, enough of dreaming of Yorkshire puddings, I woke up had my first Shake It Slim of the day, did my spring cleaning, some online promoting and a shop trip and before I knew it it was shake no.2 time. 

The rest of the day went on, I cooked Sunday dinner for Danny and the tots, and taken my plate round to my friend Jess who lives round the corner. I suprisingly didn’t miss it that much at all, and had another shake instead. I’m finding my cravings have gone, and knowing I’m getting more nutrients and vitamins with the shakes than what I would out of my usual meals gives me a great feeling.

So a day of three shakes and no meals, and I feel better than ever! I also weighed myself today, and I’m 4lb down from when I started with Forza 3 days ago, thats now 15lbs in total!!! 

Feeling gooooood!
Day 4 – 
Todays the first day of half term, so I have a whole week of being at home with the children. To resist the picking at their chicken dinosaurs and potato letters! I had my usual shake In the morning, followed by another at 2pm. Dinner tonight was chicken breast, asparagus and a handful of mushrooms. 

Today was totally easy, no hunger at all. I worked out to a Joe Wicks Hiit session on YouTube, absolute killer!! 
Day 5 – 

Woke up up at 6am, without any kiddies even waking me up, sat up, had a stretch and woke the children up, oh how different that felt. We went downstairs, I had my first Shake of the day and popped YouTube on to do a dance work out with Keaira LaShae (hope I’ve spelt that right), if you love urban music her dance workouts are the best.

A chocolate shake for my second of the day and soup was my choice for dinner tonight. 

I’ve had quite a down and moody day today, and not felt my best, literally anything would make me sad, but I’m human, and that’s allowed so on with tomorrow, lets hope I’m happier and not ripping people’s head’s off like today.. 

Day 6 –

Today, I was super busy in the morning and didn’t have my first Shake until 10am, this didn’t bother me as I was too busy to even think about eating or even drinking for that matter. Having my first Shake at 10am meant that I didnt really want another shake just a couple of hours later, so I decide to have a super light lunch at around 2.30pm of Tuna and cucumber followed by an apple.

Dinner for the evening was a grilled chicken salad.

There was no workout today as I was way too tired at all times of the day, and just couldn’t wait to jump in to my bed. Even when your trying your best to lose weight, you also need to rest and relax. So as Danny had moved the bedroom around before he went off to work at lunchtime, I thought what a perfect opportunity to relax, up went some fairy lights, on went some music, and I was in my chill zone. 

Day 7 – 

WEIGH DAY!!! 

Well, Forza supplements, you have done me proud, with your amazing tasting shakes, you have helped me lose… 

7LBS IN ONE WEEK!!! (4 inches in total)

I’m so happy, thats a total of 18lbs since 1st January 2017. 

As I have done shake diets before such as the Cambridge diet, I know that I you dont stick to it, and maintain a healthy eating regime afterwards complete with exercise, the weight will pile back on, and I know that from experience. This time around,im doing 3 weeks on,  1 week off, where in my 1 week, I eat regular meals 5 times a day. 

I will continue to keep you guys updated on my progress, and try to post pictures regularly…
Good luck to anyone out there trying to reach their weight goals! 
Thankyou to Forza Supplements 

Learning to love myself, being body positive and defeating negative people.


2017 has been one of the most positive new years for me, I have never had so much ambition for a year ahead. I set a goal, to gain confidence mostly. No matter where I go, who I meet I would say 1 in 7 of the people I meet are super negative, and I used to be one of them. 

I can’t stand bitchyness, people who bodyshame, people who put down others who they barely even know. It seems to be people who have issues of their own, therefore they make out that other people are worse of than them in a way. I suppose it makes them feel better and gives them a boost in life. 

Well this is wrong! If you’re one of those people, you need to re-look at those people, and look at yourself. How are you that different? We aren’t! There are 7.5 billion people in the world, and you and me are just a couple of them. We’re all human, different shapes, sizes, names, genders, sexualities. It doesn’t matter what we have, we should learn to love and support each other, as we are not going to live forever. 
This brings me to my school days. Without knowing, I would say I was minorly bullied, being told more than once a day I looked different because I chose to have short hair. Being called big nose…I’d go home and get stressed out in more ways than one.. Get in to situations I won’t go in to. 

Then along came social media, where you can show yourself to the world in anyway you want to. People love following trends. Those pictures of stunning girls plastered all over Instagram that we follow daily for inspiration. I’m not gonna lie, I can sit and look at Mini Instagram videos for hours, Watching make up tutorials but the majority of the girls have had lip fillers, and this has lowered my confidence even more, so now I feel like I now need fillers…I shouldn’t feel like that but thats my own insecurities. 

My nose has played a big issue in my life since I was 15, I am always conscious about it since it was mentioned to me amd still is…I laugh it off, but the next time I look in the mirror, I’ll be trying to see the size of it from every angle haha! There I go laughing it off again…

Anyway, my point is…I am learning to not give a f### about peoples opinions on myself. They’ll have forgot about what they said less than two seconds later. If they know they have brought you down, they’ll be smiling forever more. No hater will ever get a response from my strong ass self…and I think that goes for everyone. Dont let other peoples bother you. Don’t dampen someone’s success. 
Let’s love ourselves, I am, and I’m loving it! 
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New Hair, New Me…

Just a short one on how the little things make you feel amazing.

Every now and then, we all need a little pick me up. Being a busy mum, (and kinda’ lazy) means that I dont wear make up every day, and rarely actually even wear make up.
Last week was my birthday,my roots were as long as a giraffes neck, and I needed sorting out. So I decided to hed to the hairdresser’s and ask to be turned ash blonde, after three sessions in two days, we got out the colour book and I came out grey…I love it! A huge pick me up…

Even just visiting the hairdresser’s,  popping a bit of make up on, doing something good for others, can give you a massive boost in life. I now find myself waking up in the morning, getting everything done before lunchtime. I do the school run everyday, sort through e-mails, get home chores done, and still manage to blog and get the camera out.
So my moral of todays blog post, is that if you feel sluggish, go do something positive for yourself…you’ll feel great!

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How I like to relax… 

My down time…
Usually appears around 7pm, i would have the children asleep by 6.30pm, then light a candle, pop on the Channel X playlist on Spotify, maybe kick back with a magazine and chill..

If I’m not listening to music, I’l be catching up on the Kardashians, i love my Kardashians! I like to make sure I don’t eat after 7pm too, if I do, it’s usually cheese to go with the odd glass of wine. Il have around 3 glasses a week, if I’m feeling awake enough by the end of the day, being up at 6am daily really isn’t my cup of tea! If I’m not drinking wine to chill out in the evening, I’m more of a squash girl, I hate hot drinks, so soft drinks are more my thing.

My new favourite candle by a mile has to be my new one from Imperial Candles… Not only does it smell beautiful, has two wicks and look gorgeous on my bedside table, but it also has a hidden piece of jewellery inside too which I can’t wait to see. Honestly, believe me when I say,  it smells AMAZING! 100 times better than my usual Yankee Candles too. 
A lot of people like to say a nice, home pamper session is their way of relaxing, I’d say that’s effort, and I’d much rather just lay, and do nothing! My cat always keeps me relaxed too, I love my Kitty cat 

So yeah, go relax, let tomorrow be tomorrow and just enjoy a quiet Now!

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Eating clean & sticking to it

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Yesterday, I had my health check on joining Alpine Health Club, it was honestly, the most detailed health check I’ve ever had. I had sticky things stuck everywhere to check my fat/water/muscle I had blood pressure and lung checks, the results were scary..

My lungs and heart are both working perfectly, but I was extremely dehydrated, and had very little water in my system, and this worried me as I thought I’d been drinking enough water…I hadn’t..and this was the reason why my eyes felt so dry, I’ve been tired and just feeling generally sluggish.

So last night before bed, I drank 850ml of water, and woke up feeling refreshed and ready for my day. I started the day with some Alpen Granola and a cup of Pukka Cleanse Detox Tea.

Sugar has always been my downfall, I crave sugar, I have a sweet tooth rather than savoury…I’m one of those that would rather have ice cream for dinner rather than an actual meal. This needs to stop, and reading ‘Sarah Wilson I quit sugar for life’ has been such a good example on how I can actually quit sugar. The positivity from Sarah appears as a natural trait, I can’t wait to read more and carry on with a sugarless diet.

My advise on keeping to your diet, or healthy new lifestyle would be, keep a diary, a detailed diary of how your days been, how much you’ve craved your bad foods, why you didn’t choose to eat them, why you feel good or bad, and learn from your own diary. Think of where you would like to be in 12 months time, how fit and strong you want to be, and most of all, what mood you want to be in. Food is one of the main causes of what mood you are in..eat bad, feel bad..

So eat well, feel well and change your bad habits. I am!

Changing My Ways

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So over the weekend, I have been having a good think, maybe over thinking, but I have definitely come to a conclusion, and I hope that it’s the right one. When it comes to diets, I have to wait for the time to come to me, I can’t just say, “right, today I’m going to eat so well, and become a goddess!”, that just doesn’t work for me. So I wait, and all of a sudden wake up without a fat persons appetite. Today’s that day, for some reason, I woke up with a major craving for cucumber, so thought I’d mix it in to my water for the day.

Cucumbers amazing, it’s a superfood which explains a lot. It is rich in fiber, which will keep you feeling full. It’s an antioxidant, it works wonders for your skin, and helps your brain function normally too. So here we go, I’m gonna try this…

Oh my God…

I usually hate fruit infused water, as I think it’s like having a soft drink without the sugar…yuk. But this is completely different, super refreshing and tasty., and obviously I know mentally that it’s not a sugary fruit, so I’m not expecting the sugary taste. My new fave drink…

So I’m sure this can only help my weightloss journey. I’m not planning on losing weight on the scales, as I want to build muscle too, to be strong and fit, and it’s hard for some people to understand this when they ask how much weight you are losing..when they look at you in disappointment because you say you’ve lost 2lbs in your first week, don’t be disheartened, you know you feel better and stronger and that is all that matters.

Mentally, over the past 12 months, I have wanted to see every positive aspect of life, and drown out any negative energy. This means eliminating negative people from your life, luckily I’ve been able to do this without offending too many people. You may find Facebook to be the most negative place possible, constant upsetting posts pushed in your face daily from people passionate about things that you aren’t or don’t want to see. My solution, the ‘unfollow’ button, they don’t need to know your not following them and you don’t need to press that harsh ‘unfriend’ button, tadaa..problem solved.

Now you’re just left with the actual humans..the ones that moan, the ones that judge you out loud and make sure you know about it.
My solution…let it go in one ear, and out the other! There’s billions of people in this world, you are just one, everyone is different, we all have a dream and need to follow it regardless of what others think or say.

So that’s my positive note for the day, I have many changes to make starting from today…so go get drinking those cucumbers, and be positive!

X