The Secret Life of a Fundraiser

Well….. that’s step 1 done…… At least I got out of bed after 36 hours.

In that time I didn’t open the curtains (despite it being a wonderful sunny Good Friday), I didn’t eat, I barely drank anything, cried most of the time, threw in some sleep for good measure, didn’t shower or brush my teeth. I’m still in the same clothes I was wearing 3 days ago.

Yes. It’s gross. Judge me if you want. Sympathise. Empathise. Do as you wish.

 

Just now, I got out of bed and can feel the horrible dark cloud has finally started to lift away.

This fundraising malarky for my Great British Rowing Challenge is the toughest, most relentless thing I have ever done. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t think it would be easy, but I certainly didn’t think it would destroy me like it has.

As a result, I have lost my appetite, lost the ability to think about anything else, I don’t want to socialise and because my mind is so busy all day, I have the weirdest dreams that wake me up leaving me unable to get back to sleep.

Was this what I expected when wanting to row around Britian, demonstrating that anything is possible, whilst raising money for Centrepoint? No!

I can quite honestly say, I have ruined the last few months of my life and am now genuinely worried about my own mental health.

Most people are starting to question if I should carry on.  Even the ones that are fully supporting me in everything I do are questioning if I should carry on. They can see I have lost my personality and am on the edge of depression. The truth is, I am too scared to admit to them that I am actually depressed. Not getting out of bed to even eat or brush my teeth for 36 hours pretty much comes under the category of depression for me. I’ve cancelled all my Easter holiday plans and don’t want to see anyone. I’ve been there before, I know what the signs are.

So, why am I carrying on?
Why am I doing this to myself?

7 weeks today, I leave from Essex to row 1,800 miles around Great Britain. You like my optimism?
I have dedicated the last 12 months of my life to this challenge. Even when I didn’t have anywhere to live, I would spend my days in the local library, learning how to design my own website and contacting sponsors. Little did they know, I was sleeping in the back of my van.

With less than 2 months to go, I am not going to give up.  I could be just one day away from a sponsor contacting me, wanting me to represent them in my challenge. If I throw in the towel now, I am going against everything I believe in, and that’s working hard for the things we want the most.

I’m the top one.

 

If I give up now, I would feel just as low as if I carry on. Imagine the questions…

Them: “How’s the training going?”
Me: “Oh. I’m not doing it anymore, it was too hard.”
Them: “Oh.”  **Thinks: Clearly she’s not as tough as I thought.** And then continues asking questions that just make me feel uncomfortable.

Whether they think that or not, it would be as much of a ball ache to cancel all the media appointments I have booked, refund everyone their money and I’d likely go into hiding just so people didn’t ask me any questions. It’s just as easy to carry on.

Plus!!!!!! I really must make a difference to those that do not have anywhere to live and no support.  As rubbish as I am feeling now, it’s not as bad as not having a bed, a home, regular food and a support network. I’ve been in that situation and it sucks!

I’m £7,000 into my £21,000 target to row 1,800 miles around Great Britain.
I do not have family members supporting me.
I do not have a marketing business, PR company or design team advising me.
My charity is unable to support me until I have raised the £21,000 to take part in the challenge.
I’m teaching myself everything and making it up as I go along.
It is the biggest learning curve I have ever been on and I am shattered.

I have 5 weeks to raise the remaining £14,000.
Most say it is impossible. But I don’t know unless I keep trying.
I have sent thousands of emails, invested hundreds, maybe thousands of pounds of my own money into this. So much so, that there are weeks where I sacrifice my food shopping money for marketing materials.
I cannot even begin to guess how many hours I have dedicated to this project.
Something from this has to result in something surely?
Please, Universe. Reward me with something 🙏🏼

 

Next time you are scrolling through Instagram and see someone getting paid to go on adventures, next time you watch Bear Grylls and think he has it easy because he has loads of money and a massive support crew, that person who blogs about products and gets paid for it, it’s likely they have all worked their asses off to get to that stage.
I wonder if they ever stayed in bed for 36 hours and didn’t brush their teeth as well?

On that note, I have a date with my toothbrush and my rowing machine. I’ll likely pull her out of the shed and into the fresh air to help me make my next action plan. I’m thinking about doing a half marathon to get rid of the demons and send the black dog on his way for a few days.

The truth is, doing this alone is so very lonely. But I suppose this is all part of the challenge.

 

Thank you for reading and have a wonderful Easter xxx

If you would like to help me achieve my goal of £21,000 which allows me to hire the boat and buy all the necessary electrical and safety equipment to row around Britain, please visit my GoFundMe page and make a donation.  Anything from £1 really does help. No amount is too small. Each time someone deposits some money in there, it gives me a lift to know there’s an extra person supporting me.

If you can’t do that, please Like and Follow me on my social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and share my challenge. Each like, share, retweet and follow helps spread my message. Thank you x