"The part that was hardest to deal with was waking up every day, for months, going through your day, and doing the bare minimum. Because I just could not find a reason to do anything. I did not have the energy to live my life and that crushed me the most."
"For years, I had suppressed my emotions, thinking it was the "manly" thing to do. But once I started playing the guitar, I realized the importance of expressing myself. Music became my outlet, and through it, I was able to process my grief and anxiety."
"Isolation, ruminating thoughts of my father dying by himself, alone and scared, surrounded only by occasional strangers in hazmatlike PPE clothing (this was a particularly effective form of emotional cutting and torture); junk food; not getting out of bed or showering; not answering my phone; and lots of wine—like red Solo cups full. I was a train wreck. Plain and simple."
"In the past, I didn’t understand my behavior or intense mood swings, but now I understand much of it is rooted in past trauma. Nearly everything in regard to close personal relationships can trigger or set me off. I often describe it as living life with no skin. Everything hurts and my brain interprets every single interaction as a threat or rejection."
"Just because I’m mourning, doesn’t mean that I’m not happy in life. Being happy to me means accepting all of the emotions as they come without judgment. I still experience anxiety and depression but I no longer beat myself up about feeling those things."
"In my first job in mining, I saved my company millions. I thought I was on the fast track to success and happiness, but it all came crashing down. I had a toxic boss and it led me to turn in on myself. Day by day, my manager ground me down. He made me question my choices at work, then my purpose, then whether my life itself had any meaning..."
"Leaving my home country and studying abroad presented its own set of challenges. I experienced months of intense loneliness, barely leaving my student hall. I slept during the day, avoiding people for weeks. I felt emotionally numb, happy for others' successes but powerless in my own life."
"I was ready to do anything and everything to get sober. For the first time in a long time, I was honest. I got honest with myself and everyone close to me. I was going to do whatever it took to successfully detox from the drugs and live a sober life. I dropped my ego and asked for help."
"I couldn’t perform simple tasks like cleaning the bathroom or planning the weekly menu. Thinking of what to cook for the next meal was overwhelming. Little things like the water pump conking out, the dogs missing a feeding, or my household helper going on her weekend off seemed like the end of the world. I had to stop driving because I would have a panic attack at the most unexpected moments."
"Do not listen to people who have achieved nothing in life, especially if you are an overachiever and ambitious person, if you have a dream, run after your dream, God has plans for you and he gifted each one of us with something. My gift was in the arts and since I was 14 years old I’ve been after that dream, even if my own family has tried to “cut off” my legs. Fight for your dream, when things are being the hardest and you’re ready to quit, that is when you shouldn’t quit because big things are coming."