How Mental Illness Shapes Us

mental healthMental illness is as challenging as any other illness in this world.  It can terrify us, hurt us, defeat us, and bring us to our knees.  It can bring us to the edge of ourselves.  How it shapes us, though, is up to us.  I say this with the utmost compassion, as I’ve been there, but how we face hardship is a choice.

I’ve walked out into the woods and cried and screamed at the top of my lungs, and prayed for help.  I’ve been drugged and locked up and told to lower my expectations for myself.  I’ve been broken, and I lost my trust in life.  Ultimately, each of us has to choose, mental illness or not, if we will let hardship in life embitter us, or will we let it shape us in a positive way?

Through the act of letting go, we can learn valuable lessons from an illness.  It takes tremendous courage and faith, but an illness can make us stronger.  It can show us what truly matters in life.  I am exponentially more compassionate and caring now, after having gone through a debilitating mental illness, than I was before.  I am much more appreciative of the blessings in my life.

I know it’s not easy, and I understand.  Just know that you’re not alone.  Know that healing is possible.  You can get better, and you can regain your trust in life.  There are countless people suffering with mental illness and going through similar experiences, and there are many others fighting to help those people heal.  Godspeed.