Pure Heart: The Journey Through Mental Health

I have been battling depression and Schizoaffective disorder since 2014. I’ve had so many highs and so many lows. I knew I wasn’t totally 100% myself. I lost interest in my favourite activities and hobbies, I was irritable, I wouldn’t come out of my apartment most days. I was in school at this point working on my associate’s in graphic design. December 26, 2013 was the day that I was sensing a downward spiral. By the beginning of 2014, I started self harming. Here I was, in the early hours of January 19 (my brother’s 9th birthday) of that year, trapping myself in my closet listening to “On A Plain” by Nirvana while slowly making tracks on my left arm with my x-acto blade. This behaviour was not normal to me, but I kept doing till August of the same year. I finally told my mother about it but she made no judgment in my situation. I’m forever grateful for that.

The Final Straw

The final straw was August 24, 2014. I was home alone with half a bottle of Southern Comfort and a 4-pack of chocolate cupcakes. I was naïve to think it would make me content and calm, boy was I wrong. It sent me to a state of pure and utter numbness. All throughout my sleep, I was just numb. The next day I started an outpatient program and lasted till December of that year.

Overthinking

I went through three visits to a mental facility (I hate the term ‘psych ward’) in three years, my last one on November 4, 2017. I knew I had to get it together and stop over thinking and stop worrying about the outcome.

Over the years, I’ve been taking antidepressants (currently not on them) and a monthly injection for my Schizoaffective symptoms.

Keeping healthy and living by my morals

Fast forward to now, I am an animal rights activist, a mental health advocate, a social justice devotee and a vegan for the last decade. I have been keeping myself healthy in so many ways possible. Music is my total escape as well as writing positive affirmations, which have been the norm for me for the last three years.

Inspiring and not defined

I want to share my story so that every person will understand not just the strong side of me but also the vulnerable parts and provide them the inspiration and faith to lead a better life through mental illness. Some things I say may not make much sense to most people, but I hope it does give them a powerful message. We are stronger than our minds, for sure.

I’m happy in the state of bliss, I’ve recently made a business for myself slowly but surely. Other than that, I’m gonna have mental illness for the rest of my life, but it’ll never define me.