What brings you joy?
I think the small things bring me joy the most. When there’s a day filled with laughter, quality time spent, or just having a really good day, all of these things bring me joy. It’s easiest to find joy when everyone around me is joyous as well.
Krystal's Mental Health Story:
I believe that mental health is still difficult to talk about, even though I’m more courageous than I was. My mental health struggle began when I was 15 years old, in moving to Atlanta from the north, and experiencing some trauma along the way I developed a battle with anxiety and some depression. I was able to get through hard points by seeing a therapist for a while.
I think often it’s so frowned upon to see someone, that you can’t openly discuss it. But I see it as, if you see your general doctor for physical checkups and seek spiritual guidance for your soul then why wouldn’t you also have a doctor for your mind? Although, this has been something I’ve struggled with on and off for years I think it’s most difficult because of my need to be independent or strong.
Admitting to having hard times or going through challenges with my mental wellness can often feel like a weakness and asking for help or sharing that is probably harder than what I experience. I’ve had friends who often look at my life and would wonder what the struggle is for when my physical lifestyle is well, and my family is well and I’m taken care of not understanding that your emotional wellness is not always tied to that. It may even be confusing for family feeling like, “you have it all so what’s the issue?”.
The best ways I cope are by taking time to myself. I often lose people along to way or face a lot of misunderstandings but I know that one of the best ways to get through those tough moments, are to recharge and find what is causing turmoil for me. People can feel a way about it but I can’t serve anyone from an empty vessel. Faith is another way, and in dark times it’s often hardest to keep but God’s promises to keep you lifted, just fighting through it I know He rewards and is taking that walk with me.
Mental health can literally attack all the things you love and strip passions and cause confusion in your path but everyone is here with a divine purpose so I believe keeping that in mind can be that one tiny piece of motivation to keep going if nothing else.
I say to seek the counseling that best fits you, if you can. I know it can be unattainable at times, but I feel strongly about finding a safe haven in loved ones. Even if it’s just a person who has an idea that something is going on so you aren’t alone. I also believe that in struggles you should fight to take care of yourself, put good things in your body, do things you enjoy, sit in nature, read things you enjoy, watch something you do and write out your feelings. Even when hard times last for a while they can’t last forever.
Breaking the stigma to me is undoubtedly being able to have these discussions openly and shamelessly. When someone can say they feel weighed and unwell mentally without being marked as crazy, which should not be used for mental health wellness. Making sure that we are as obsessed with being mentally fit as we are with being physically fit, then I really believe that the world would be better, we would treat and understand each other better. Breaking the stigma, by making these conversations and taking these steps to do better would instill hope in those who may lose it in their journey. It’s time to do better.