My journey on the Overnight is fueled by own personal struggle.
These green beads I wear signify a decade long battle with addictions, and depression and the struggle to find myself in the midst of that pain.
My journey has not been easy and it is far from over, I know there are many things I still have to face and conquer. But the fact that I wear these beads without shame or fear of judgment is a testament to the work of AFSP.
It’s not an easy task to stand up and say: “Yes I have struggled. Yes I wanted to take my own life. Yes I am scarred and bruised and battered.” But when I wear these beads, and see others with them, it is a reminder that I am not alone.
I am more than a statistic, I am more than an addiction, I am more than a diagnosis. There is much more to me that hasn’t even been discovered. There are places I long to see. People I want to grow old with. Changes I want to make in my life and in others’.
Every step and every tear is a reminder of how far I have already come in this journey called life.I have experienced deep pain, I have struggled to come to terms with loss in my life. I have seen the depths of despair. But I am still here, still fighting, still trying to make a difference. There are miles ahead of me, but all I have to do is turn around and see the miles I have already conquered.
The Overnight is an event that allows me to share my story and connect with others. It is the fuel that gets me through the night, and all the days ahead.
The scars on my wrists represent a life that could have ended; A life that was filled with so much pain,disappointment, and heartbreak. I will have these scars for the rest of my life. I will have the memories of sitting on a bathroom floor and just giving up. But I also have the memory of waking up, and being given the chance to start over and get help for the battles that I was facing. There are still times that I struggle, but I know that I am not alone. There are many people who wear the “green beads” of depression, bipolar disorder, addiction and other mental health conditions. We are in this together.
The things I have struggled with are the very same things that fuel me to help others. I believe that I have walked where I have walked for a reason. I know that my journey is a blessing, because it has given me the tools to be able to help somebody out of their darkness.
So I will continue to walk this journey called life, and give my life to help others.