My background story isn’t a very happy one. My father has not been in my life since I was about a year old. He was abusive to my mom as well as my sister and me. Aside from that, my mother was a drug addict which led to my sister and I being placed into Child Haven.
My maternal grandparents took us out of Child Haven and began raising me while my sister went back with my mom. My first encounter with death was when my grandpa got hurt at work. I was eight and didn’t really understand what was going on. My grandma pulled the plug a week later.
Then when I was 12, my grandma received a call from a Utah hospital. My mom was pronounced brain dead. She had died of a drug overdose. Since then, it was just my grandma and me. She had become my best friend.
When I turned 22, she had hurt her back and was placed in the hospital. Just when she seemed to be getting better, she went into cardiac arrest. She was revived but quickly went downhill. After a week, she began to refuse treatment and as her Power of Attorney, I had to be the one to decide to pull all medical treatment. Her heart stopped within 10 minutes. It devastated me. I began to fail all the prerequisite classes I was taking.
I eventually was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder and PTSD. I was battling my own mind every day. It took almost a year, but I eventually got myself back on track. It comes in waves sometimes where I’ll have good weeks and really bad weeks still, but since then I’ve dedicated my platform to help bring light to mental illness. People view mental illness as something that is almost taboo to talk about and I don’t know why.