I’m a fairly private person. I know there’s a lot about me and my life that would shock people. But I also believe that there’s a chance that sharing could reach a person, touch a person. So, for that reason alone, I choose to share. I’m 38. Ive worked in the mental health field…I also struggle with clinical depression and anxiety.
My life has been challenging, since childhood. I come from a troubled family. (I don’t know why I allow admitting that to cause me so much shame). This caused me to experience depression since as young as 9.
In the past decade alone I lost my father to brain cancer, a close friend in a plane crash, and had two car accidents that left with me with a broken nose, torn labrum, fractured sacrum, herniations, nerve damage and a defeated spirit. I live in chronic pain. I’ve been active my entire life. It has always been an outlet for me. My accidents robbed me of my strongest coping skill. I slipped into the deepest depression, isolating myself from the world. Not showering. Not eating. Crying all night, sleeping all day.
One afternoon in January of 2012 I overdosed on my pain medication in attempt to end my life. The days following were a blur, but I was hospitalized, kept for a few days and returned back into the world in which I had lost faith in.
It’s taken me years to get back to where I was physically and I continue to journey down the road to get to where I would like to be emotionally.
The stigma behind mental health is disappointing . One should not feel embarrassed to admit to depression or otherwise just as one shouldn’t feel embarrassed to admit to having cancer. It’s an illness! Its a shame that people easily throw around judgments, opinions, etc. Perhaps it stems from fear and ignorance. After all, how well do you really know a person? Even those you think you know may be carrying a burden so heavy, privately, like I did.
Everything in life takes work. Degrees, relationships, careers etc. I look at mental health in the same manner. For some people it takes work to feel happy, content. There are good professionals out there. They can help. And for anyone who is feeling alone- You Are Not. To all of those who struggle, I have faith in you. Keep going.