Five years ago, when I was 25 years old, I suffered a bipolar psychotic break. I spent a night in an ER Psychiatric unit- part of which was in solitary confinement- a week at a nearby psych ward and then a month in an aftercare outpatient program before moving home to live in my parent’s basement. I had arrived at rock bottom. Needless to say, this event changed the course of my life.
From inside a hospital I had to confront the illness that I had so easily swept under the rug during college. In the weeks, months and years to come I had to find a way to accept that I had bipolar disorder, figure out how to best treat it, heal the trauma inflicted by my illness, and rebuild a life I wanted to live. Five years ago I wasn’t sure I could do that, but I stand here today to say that I did. You can too.
I am compelled to share my story by the belief that stories are powerful. At their best they can educate, foster understanding and encourage hope. Interest in mental illness is on the rise- people want to know more. I hope that by sharing my journey I can help those who struggle and their families feel less alone.
I currently reside in my hometown of Bellevue, Washington where I work in fashion, enjoy spending time with my friends and family, indulge in my hobbies, and continue to write and share my story.