MENTAL HEALTH: A FAMILY STORY
The Beginning-Sort Of:
“We are all messed up on the inside.” Speaking with my cousin Will in Connecticut, whom I just met after 30 years due to our family being disconnected, he stated these words which rang true. We are all messed up on the inside in my family, and now finding out that depression runs in the family beginning with my great-grandparents, it’s great because now I know I’m not the only one in family who has episodes and it’s hereditary. Sidebar: the most exciting factor about learning the history of my family with depression is being able to work through it and learning the triggers causing the episodes.
“We are all messed up on the inside.”
Additionally, with some of the traumatic events which took place in my family before and after I was born, is why some of my family suffers with depression. A family with a history of depression makes it easier to talk about and learn what is necessary to take care of our mental health.
So, mental health has become one of the core issues in our society which is long overdue. Mental health is crippling to many people who have a lot of potential and want to succeed. This road-block in many people lives prevents them from reaching their full potential-a clear example is me. I know firsthand how this setback gets in the way and prevents me from succeeding which is not a good feeling. Additionally, this setback causes more problems since it has forced me to work harder when I should have taken time to focus on my mental health.
“Sidebar: one of the best lessons I’ve learned from working through my mental health issues is I have to build relationships for my longevity of life and it’s great to have someone to lean on and talk to.”
Aside from not reaching your full potential, having mental health issues can cause bad relationships or no relationships. Learning over the years, building relationships are critical because we all need someone, and relationships are part of helping our mental health. Sidebar: one of the best lessons I’ve learned from working through my mental health issues is I must build relationships for my longevity of life and it’s great to have someone to lean on and talk to.
“Sidebar: my family history, it was my grandma Sandra who had episodes with mental illness, specifically seizures caused by an injury.”
Although, not proven, in my opinion traumatic events cause episodes of mental illness which in my grandma case, her traumatic injury from a child. In my case, it’s mistreatment of past events which put me in a state of stress, depression and anxiety. Triggers of past events and pushing myself without breaks is why I have episodes of depression and anxiety. I’ve been on and off with episodes with a combination of depression and anxiety for 2 years. However, what I’ve come to realize and reflecting on my life, is that I’ve always had a combination of depression and anxiety without realizing why I was down or upset.
Through my journey in learning the triggers of my episodes of depression and anxiety, I’ve learned to manage, take breaks and process what’s healthy to be a better person.
First, this was a struggle to write this blog because being open it’s not who I am, but it’s time to lay off the politics for a minute and focus on an issue which many people live with daily. Next, working through my own mental health issues of depression and anxiety has shown me that taken care of yourself is optimal to be the best person you can be. For the longest time, I neglected myself which caused issues within myself and with other people, but most importantly it cost me peace which I am getting back.
Mental health is an issue which some people are embarrassed to discuss, if it’s about themselves which I am one of those people. What I can say and what I am learning is that, we all need someone to talk to, we all need healing, and we all are not alone. Take time for ourselves and our minds each day to have better mental and emotional health.
Also published on Medium.