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Why Am I Here?


    As I write this, I still but question myself if I should share, but when I think about how I ended up on, it feels necessary sharing.


    It all started with a Breakfast Club interview around the same time I took my 2-year sabbatical from corporate America. I knew who Romany was, but in all honesty, I don't follow a whole lot of celebrities but I liked the fact that he was a "free thinker." So I started following him on social media and then became a Prison Logic fan and supporter. How I eventually met him on set is a long story, but there are a million shifts in the universe that had to occur for me to be standing at his table. I freaked out a little (maybe a lot), and I gave him the death stare until he acknowledged me (since he was so busy working lol) I told him I was a Prison Logic supporter, and how much his videos has inspired me, and I cried a little and the rest is still currently a video on his IG page. Of course, I went to the ATL premier of Prison Logic and of course, I'm up in all of his "Lives" asking to be a member of LMT, so here we are.


    I knew the show A Million Little Things was about male depression, but watching Romany's character attempt to down a handful of pills in the trailer, I was immediately rattled. Not rattled in a way that I was "triggered." But I'm just thinking "Wow, this isn't a coincidence at all"!

    Only my immediate family and friends know about my history of depression and anxiety. I've never talked about this publicly because I don't want to be labeled or handled with care. But I'm getting to realizing that my story can help others just as the people whom I have watched and admired have helped me.


    28 years old, I was a year removed from an abusive relationship, but at the same time I was sad that exiting, left me a single mom. I'm college educated, from two parents, sub-urban/military household, being a single parent just wasn't supposed to be in the cards for me. But I did not just have the tools to cope with my new reality. On top of that, I was on birth control which I think exacerbated every feeling I had. And the "love of my life" or should I say "reconnected high school sweetheart" broke up with me because he wasn't ready to be a dad. I could honestly give you a list of all of the insecurities that whirled around my head that were so silly but kept me up at night. I maintained appearances though; and I had a decent job as a Marketing Manager that afforded me a decent lifestyle despite being a single mom living in Woodley Park, DC.


    No one would have known I was depressed, cause I didn't realize I was depressed. I just knew I was sad, crying uncontrollably every night for probably three months straight, until one day I just decided I have had enough and came up with my plan. I knew when I was going to do it; my children were going to my mom's house for the weekend. So before I dropped them off, I stopped at Target and bought them about six months worth of clothes, because somehow that made sense to me at the time. Then I called up my three best friends and invited them to dinner in Georgetown. We laughed and had a wonderful time and when we separated, they had no idea what I had planned next.

    On my way home I stopped at a convenience store grabbed some otc sleeping pills. At home, I had a bottle of champagne waiting in my fridge. I ordered "The Bounty Hunter" with Jennifer Anniston on pay per view and began trying to take my life by chugging handfuls sleeping pills with champagne. The pills weren't strong enough, so I just ended up just being sick and sort of paralyzed. I crawled into my kitchen and found a knife, but I was too weak or could it be that the knife just wasn't sharp enough because I just ended with surface cuts on my wrists.

    The next morning, I eventually ended up driving myself to the emergency room. I told them what I had done was an accident, just thinking they would pump my stomach or something. However, seeing the cuts on my wrist prompted them to place me in an involuntary 72 hour 5150 hold that included a 24-hour suicide watch where someone followed my every move even when I peed or showered.

    My mom came to visit me while I was hospitalized, and I could tell she didn't know what to do. My dad refused to see me because to him depression isn't the real thing. And my attending doctor was this beautiful woman with perfect eyelashes and she had like 4 carats on her finger telling me "everything will be ok." I'm like "uh, fuck you, no it's not, I want to jump out of the window." Well, those statements would kind of extend your stay and prompt another suicide watch.


    During what ended up to be a six-day hold, I was put on an anti-depressant. Following the hold I entered a voluntary 30-day counseling program where I engaged in individual and group therapy as well as medication management.  I was on so many drugs, one for depression, one for anxiety, one to help me sleep, one to help me with energy. I was in a fog for one good week or so before I could really understand that I spiraled and made some terrible decisions.


    Group therapy was eye-opening for me though. For thirty days, I spent my entire day with people who also had lost hope and needed to dig there way out of depression. On one side I was sitting with a white, middle, aged female executive, and a 19-year-old white college student from an affluent community and I wondered WHY/HOW? could they be depressed. But on the other side, I'm sitting with a gay military veteran who grew up in the bible belt, and a male executive who was battling thyroid cancer and I think they SHOULD be depressed. But getting to know these people I found that everyone's pain was real, and it was valid for them. In the time we spent together we loved each other, and we all pushed each other to do the work required to cope with and address the issues that got us to where we ourselves.

    For the first time in my life, I actually talked about my feelings and addressed the trauma associated with being in an abusive relationship. I spent so much time and effort trying to present a pretty picture that I stuffed every real emotion I had so deep down, that I really had no clue who I was or wanted to be.


    I learned a lot in those 30 days and continued individual therapy afterward. Being on medication, however, has its ups and downs, like yeah I wasn't "sad" anymore, but I really couldn't feel anything. I wasn't really motivated to do anything either. I rarely had an appetite, but somehow I gained 30 lbs in a month. And yeah, I could sleep at night, but I lost the edge that got me where I was career-wise.

    I did not stay on medication much longer.  My brain isn't the same as it was before the drugs and that was another issue to deal with on top of trying to use the new coping skills that I learned in therapy. It took me a year or so to really figure out life and motherhood with my new outlook. And a few more years to recognize that I couldn't MAKE myself happy, I just had to be happy and live consciously and on purpose. I have since focused on holistic methods to manage my depression and anxiety such as therapy, chiropractic therapy, meditation and continuously seeking good books and people that gives me good and positive energy.


    It's weird to say, but I am grateful for hitting rock bottom. I know that I am a better mother, friend, sister, daughter because of it. Not just because I am appreciative of life, but because I listen, I empathize and I take responsibility for my feelings. I raise my daughters with more compassion and affection, and I know they are better for it.

    In actuality, I really did end a life. I killed off a girl who didn't know her power and didn't know how to be a

    present and loving mother. And I was given the opportunity and tools to build a better, and more conscious me.


    There is so much value in sharing your story. I can rattle off every book I have read, every video I've watched, and tell you what it meant to me or how it inspired me. But I've neglected to share my own story with others. In some ways, I do keep up this picture of strength, when in reality it takes a lot of work to be strong and mentally healthy. So, I know I found this place to share my story and learn from others.

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