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Meet Kaya

Mental Health Mondays

Meet Kaya

Morgan Daniels

What brings you joy?

What brings me joy is knowing I'm on the path to becoming a better me. I have joy because I am able to change my life and the lives of others.

Kaya's Mental Health Story:

"Depression is something I’ve known about my whole life. I saw my mother struggle with it as a single parent, and I watched my older sister struggle with it in her teens. I honestly grew up accepting that being depressed is normal, and that when times got hard you were allowed to shut yourself away, turn off all the lights, and fall into this dark emotional hole.

Since that was my childhood, I was probably one of the last people to realize the severity of my depression once I got to Spelman College. By the end of my senior year, I had been committed to a mental hospital twice, attempted suicide, been through several therapists/psychiatrists, experienced alcoholism, developed social anxiety, and lost so many friends… all while carrying so many campus titles/positions. I can’t lie, it was an extremely dark period in my life but I made it through by support.

The support of my family, and my Spelman sisters was so overwhelming, they showed me my life was important when I couldn’t see that. I had to be brave enough to say to everyone “I’m not okay”, and honestly that was the first step towards recovery. Depression will always be something I have to manage, but at least now I know that with my support system and God on my side, that it doesn’t have to be something I have to manage alone."

Kaya Rand is the founder of She Unplugged.