From The Beginning...
Mental illness has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. In the beginning, what I was feeling didn't have a name and I was simply labeled as "moody, dramatic, or full of teenage angst." That all changed during my first year of college when I was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder... a discovery that would turn my entire life upside down.
The stigma of having a mental illness brought tremendous shame. For nearly ten years, I kept my diagnosis a secret from friends and family- even my own parents. I built a persona, a mask to keep my illness hidden from the world. Yet how can one truly embrace life if they can't even be themselves?
This project- originally entitled Curiosity, Courage and Cake- was the end of my secret and the beginning of my new authentic life. It has evolved since then, but is still focused on the same idea: it is okay to not be okay. Every experience, interaction, moment in time helps to define who we are and where we will go. Life is not meant to be perfect- the ups and downs are what shape our stories.
This is my story.
Keynotes & Programs
You want to work with good people who speak regularly to college students and support your campus or department's mission. That's exactly what I'm here for. Check out some of my keynotes.
Sharing our stories is the greatest way to overcome the stigma that surrounds mental illness and help others know that they are not alone and that it is okay to not be okay. This is my story.