So in light of Mental Health Awareness Week I thought I’d shed some light on my journey as I feel it may encourage someone.
I suffered with depression from quite a young age but I hit my peak when I was 22, which was when these left pictures were taken. Through my depression, I became extremely paranoid and anxious and the thought of being outside my house made me panic.
I was underweight, absolutely hated everyone around me and hated myself so bad that I didn’t want to live anymore. I was broken. I didn’t want to talk to anyone around me as I felt it was pathetic and was under the impression that black people didn’t go through these things lol so I just wallowed in my sadness. I tried to go to therapy, but I was too embarrassed to talk. I couldn’t find the words to express how I was feeling, so I just punished myself instead.
It was not until one random day that God put it on my heart to go for a run. I say it was God because it definitely didn’t come from me. I had no interest in exercise at the time and couldn’t explain where this sudden urge came from. I went for my run and it felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulder, so I continued to do it. I found that every time I exercised, I was clearing my mind by speaking to God and just letting go. Eventually, I built up the strength to actually speak to my friend about it and seek help.
When I say fitness saved my life, I literally mean it. It gave me a new sense of purpose and allowed me to start my healing process. Through this, I learnt how to turn negative thoughts into positive actions and I found that by taking care of myself physically, I was also taking care of my mind.
Now I’m in a much better space and actually cannot believe how far I’ve come. I’m proud of what I have managed to overcome and couldn’t have done it without prayer, exercise and good people. If this message resonates with anyone, I want to show you that change is possible. If I can come out better, then so can you.