Feel. Felt. Found.

When it comes to mental health, I feel you and while I may not understand exactly what you’ve been through or are still facing, I can empathize with you. Over the years I have had my own battles with depression and anxiety and I want you to know that its okay not being okay but know that things will get better.

Depression and anxiety has been something I’ve felt and privately battled but hid it behind my smile. It really hit me hard a few years back and had me in a dark place. I was dealing with a lot at work, as well as with matters within my personal life , and I just wasn’t happy with the way my life was going. My weight was up and down and I was in and out of the hospital dealing with different health issues and I wasn’t sleeping or really eating. While I never thought of or tried to hurt myself, there were times when I wish I was not living and before going to sleep at night I would tell the Lord if he did not wake me the next morning it would be alright. I felt alone and I felt like no one would understand or care about what I was going through. I feared being judged so I never opened up to anyone about what was going on and I just put a smile on my face and went on about my days like everything was alright. I spent many of nights at the beach just sitting there and some of the nights tears just ran down my face uncontrollably with thoughts of “why me” running through my mind. There were other times where I would go out and just run and run until my body couldn’t take it anymore. Having to keep up the “I’m okay” facade wore on me and made me feel exhausted because of the expectation I felt people had of me to always be smiling, upbeat, and full energy. How I felt, I would never wish on anyone, I was ashamed and felt if I spoke up about what I was going through people would judge and look at me different. Suppressing what I was dealing with got to a point where my cover was beginning to be blown because the pressure was getting to be too much. In addition, I was also struggling with doing what was best for me and I tended to consider what others were dealing with more than I considered myself. I held a lot in and not only carried the pain I was dealing with but, I also took on the burdens of others and it was all wearing me down.

One morning I woke up and found that I did not want to feel that way any more and I wanted to take back control of my life. I knew that it would not be an easy or a quick process but I began to put things into place that would put me in a position of progression. I had a co worker who I found peace in and began to open up to them and it became a safe space for me in the midst of my battle. I opened up to my parents and released burdens I was carrying and in true mom fashion she stated to me “I knew you were going through something and was just waiting for you to open up when you were ready”. I began to make conscious efforts to not allow things to consume my mind that I have no control over as well as avoiding situations that could be counterproductive to my healing process. One of the biggest factors that aided in my healing process was leaving my job and in doing so, I was blessed with a new career opportunity that brought me to a new state to call home. In my new home I found a running family, reconnected with college friends and found a healthier and happier new way of life. Meeting my Movers+Pacers running family allowed me to continue to enjoy my passion of running in a more healthier way. Rather than running away from my struggles being apart of the M+P Family provided me an outlet that allowed me to run through my struggles and remain steadfast in my journey through life.

Overcoming your battle is not going to be easy and will only be as hard as you make it. If you don’t want to feel that way anymore then, get up and take back control of your life. Talk to someone, find healthy lifestyle options, separate yourself from people and things that are not beneficial to your healing process and know that you are loved and cared about. I find myself sometimes trying to slip back into those old ways and it may happen to you but you have to stay strong, keep pressing on and not allow anyone or anything to defeat you. “Trust your faith not your struggle. The storm will end. Don’t let it break you, let it build you.” If no one told you today I’m telling you now, you are loved, you are cared about, you are important,you matter and, this world would not be as awesome without you in it.
Be Blessed!

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