Speaking at the opening of the Digitale Poli: from one experience …
Speaking at the opening of the Digitale Poli: from one experience …

… to the other! Five weeks ago I was asked to speak at the opening of the Digitale poli: the event to celebrate the collaboration between Parnassia (PsyQ) and Sense Health (Goalie, now NiceDay). I doubted for two minutes, I really do not like speaking in front of a group. But on the other hand it was so special that I did not want to say no!

But what was so special?
I was asked to speak as an expert and patient during the official opening of the cooperation between (Sense Health) Goalie (NiceDay) and Parnassia. What an honor! So after those two minutes, I came to the conclusion that I just had to do this. Otherwise I would definitely regret it.

The preparation
My friend Lisa (from Goalie, now NiceDay) asked me if I wanted to participate (she is also responsible for the fact that I blog for NiceDay!). When I got used to the idea, I said yes. Firstly because I was honored that she asked me, and secondly because I could use this opportunity to give something back to Goalie (NiceDay), after all the help I received from them.

After I returned from Norway, we sat around the table and talked about how it will go, so that I knew what to expect. Also, to give me the certainty that I would be ‘protected’ as a patient they told me that if for some reason it did not feel right anymore, that they would break it off discreetly. And that I would be assisted if difficult questions come up from the audience.

The night before was awful. First I fell asleep on the couch because I was terribly tired. From 4AM to 6:30AM I nauseously stared at the ceiling of the bedroom to wake up three hours later aware that it was really going to happen today.

The announcement
I was invited to come a little earlier so that I could already take a look at the room that was set up for the presentation. I already knew the place because of my treatment at PsyQ, so that was very nice. The room was nicely decorated and small. But unfortunately so many people kept walking in! More than I expected! I spoke to myself encouragingly: it is going to be OK, I can do this!

The first 45 minutes of the presentation were organized to discuss the idea behind the Digital poli, what it is and how it works. The insurers who support the cooperation were presenting as well. Then it was the turn of the practitioners! I knew that after these ladies it was going to be my turn, so luckily there were no surprises for me!

“And now I would like to give the floor to Renée”. That is all I hear, for a moment I am  stunned. Put that step forward Renée, you can do this! That goes through my mind and it takes me forever to take place next to the therapists, under an overwhelming applause from the invited guests, I introduce myself. I explain who I am, that I had a burnout, that I have struggled with PTSD and anorexia, but that things are going well for me now. That I study again and have a job for 20 hours a week. After an unanimous “Oooooh” and applause it almost gets too much for me. But I know how to take control over myself and naturally continue to say everything I wanted to tell. Without a cheat sheet, without stuttering. I cannot believe this is happening!

After my story, there are still a number of questions from the audience. For the practitioners who stood next to me and for me. There was also a question about the treatment. One that I thought I had to answer. And I did. At first I was a bit shocked, but then I thought: go for it, I can answer that! And in the end there was a little surprise for me: after I had spoken and wanted to take place on the sidelines again, I received a beautiful bouquet of flowers as a thank you gift.

The Goalie (now called NiceDay) team overwhelmed me with compliments. It was very much appreciated that I was there. Two guests came to me almost immediately after the presentation and expressed their appreciation to me. They usually do not talk to a patient in this way, so also for them it is a unique experience.

And I got more compliments like this. After some drinks I went home with a good feeling. I am proud of myself, without a doubt. And relieved that my anxiety is influencing my life less. That I do what I like and that I can enjoy it. Also the difficult things.

The song of this week is: Conquer the world of Jessie J. Together you are strong, I experienced it again. My partner, parents and friends have ensured that I gained  enough self confidence for this day. And half an hour before the presentation everybody send me sweet messages. Also the people of Goalie (NiceDay) supported me. Thank you! This way I want to wish Goalie (NiceDay) the best of luck! I trust that it is going to be very successful.

Love, Renée x

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Expert in PTSD, burnout, personality disorders and eating disorder. Even if I only help one person by sharing my story, I am happy!

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