In episode 181 of The Just Checking In Podcast we checked back in with Claudia Van-Nimwegen.
Claudia is a mental health advocate, teacher and theatre artist.
In Part 3 of her mental health journey we discuss an Eating Disorder (ED) which Claudia had previously been bottling up and suppressing for a long period of her life.
In December 2022, the ED, the fibromyalgia (which Claudia had been diagnosed with and discussed in Part 2) and general stress combined into a dangerous cocktail and exploded, causing her to collapse at work.
The left side of her body became immobile and she was admitted to hospital where she stayed for three weeks.
During that time, she had to learn to deal with her ED, change her eating habits and tackle the voices in her head that were telling her to take her own life. These voices came in the form of an imaginary friend which Claudia said has been with her since childhood.
Eventually, after lots of checks, delays and frustration, Claudia got some clarity on why she collapsed and was diagnosed with Functional Neurological Disorder (FND). She says this has explained so many things in her life and plays a part in every other diagnosis she has had.
Despite that traumatic moment and all of these diagnoses, she has never let this define her. She was discharged after a month in hospital, is in recovery and back at work doing what she loves in teaching and drama.
We finish by discussing how her faith got her through this traumatic event, how her church community supported her financially whilst she was off work and finding her voice.
As always, #itsokaytovent
You can follow Claudia on social media below:
You can listen to Part 1 of Claudia’s journey here.
You can listen to Part 2 of Claudia’s journey here.
TRIGGER WARNING: this podcast contains a deep discussion about suicide, which some listeners may find distressing or upsetting, so please listen with caution.