September 30, 2018
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Deb Steedman’s Story:
” I have lived with depression and social anxiety ever since I can remember. I am 65 years young. I struggled of of my life with “who am I?” and without knowing I turned my life to fate.Whatever came my way through fate, I did well, but to do well addiction masked my depression. Without really knowing my being, I allowed all the hurt during my life to identify my being. The hurts built so much that back in April of 2012, through emptiness, loneliness, darkness and despair, I had a close attempt of suicide.
I lived alone with my feelings (Who am I? I feel like I am just taking up space. I just don’t belong. I am different and wishing I could be like others). It was a lot of turmoil and conflict within. What stopped me from looking for help? I did not know where to go and I did not know the resources to go through. To be honest, it was also stigma. Is my mental health that bad that I have to seek help? I am not like the worse case scenarios that are portrayed in the media and tv and I am not like those people. I don’t lie or steal and I am never aggressive and basically I am a good human being, therefore I don’t need help.
I received help and finally found the resources available and even though I am still on a healing journey, I have learned so much about my being. You can find more information on my page “MY JOURNEY OF HEALING”
I have lived and survived mental illness and I don’t think anyone should have to suffer due to not knowing resources that are available and due to stigma, either within or by others. I have also experience stigma not only from within but from siblings and their families. In the end, it is your being and it is only you that can take control of your mental health, BUT, you can ask for help to acheive a better you.
Because of my appreciation of the help I have received, I embarked on a “Run for Mental Health” which only involved Ontario from April 29, 2013 – May 24, 2013 running/walking 522 miles/855 kilometers. The event was to raise money for the difference branches of CMHA and to raise mental health awareness and eliminate stigma. During my run, I was inspired by the CMHA’s who did support me, to want to do more.
Doing a relay with people who have experienced addictions and mental illness, I believe will impact the public and media more so, than one person trying to do so. I believe things happen for a reason. I had to live it, I had to endure it all my 60 + years. I believe we are put on this earth for a reason and I never knew why. I believe this may be calling.
AND THAT IS THE WHY:
Let’s work together in a united goal towards mental health awareness and to stop the stigma!
My relay is supporting the following agencies. It is your choice as to where you would like your donations to go. I hope to see you all out! For more information, visit the Relay for Mental Health Awareness website at relayformentalhealth.ca/ “