Dealing with mental health trauma and illness - my story

I’m someone deeply affected by mental health trauma and illness, and I have learned to cope and heal in my own ways over time. A few years back I was facing what I now recognize as an immense wave of depression that had been slowly building up for some time. It was incredibly overwhelming and debilitating, but with the support of friends, family, and mental health professionals, I eventually began to understand the root causes of my pain and illness.

From there began a difficult but necessary process of working through difficult emotions and experiences from my past. I’ve been able to identify trauma triggers that can set me off when I least expect it and have developed helpful coping strategies to properly manage my emotions so that they don’t spiral out of control. That process has also included understanding how certain lifestyle changes can positively affect my overall wellbeing - exercise, talking through any worries/concerns with friends or a therapist, developing healthier habits with food/sleeping/etc., spending quality time outdoors whenever possible.

I’m so far removed from where I was before but am grateful for everything this experience has taught me about self-care and taking full responsibility for my mental health. Looking back at it now, it’s hard not to be inspired by how resilient we can be even during our darkest hours; our ability to face tough situations head on without running away isn’t easily won - it takes courage along with deep commitment to recover from the hardest times in life.