I used to think Mental Health was something lazy people made up to excuse their poor thinking. I had never in my life experienced anxiety. Depression or anything like that. Yeah I was a super introverted and shy kid growing up, with a lot of self judgements and flaws, but I always felt that growth was always within hands reach. Just a few better thoughts away. So I judged, in my head, people who said they were depressed or anxious. How can you listen to those negative thoughts so much you start to believe them? How can you use your imagination in such a bad way, it freezes you from opening up, taking risks, or connecting? I could not relate.
I used to stutter and shake around people (specially women I found attractive) growing up. I could not hold eye contact or express myself. Yet I never felt limited. I always did what I wanted, with lots of nervousness.. Yeah, but I did it. So why be depressed? I thought. As if it was so simple.
About a year ago I faced, for the first time, depression, addiction and anxiety. My world was flipped upside down after a bad experience. And for the first time, I felt what it is like for your mind not to be on your side. For your body’s biochemistry to pull the other way… Spontaneous breakdowns mid week would have me juggle and reschedule clients. I’d lay on bed crying for hours. I’d cry over the heart ache a little, and I’d cry over the feeling of powerlessness a LOT. Then I’d try to numb it through drugs, sex, alcohol, work,etc…
I was judging myself, just like I judged people in the past. I realized life is not so black and white. I noticed how it can happen to all of us. Chaos hits and suddenly the floor we were standing on vanishes …What then? What do you do when you’re lost? Well… Among having a support network of incredible friends. Reaching out, and connecting with family, the number one thing that helped me was to accept this as part of the human experience.
“This too is okay”. To not whip my hurting self with shame and judgement over the way I felt. To accept and create space for my heart…
To feel. To heal.
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