May: Mental Health Awareness Month

Sometimes it just hits you suddenly. It does not matter where you are, who you are with, or what time of day it is. Something just is not right.  All you want is to leave and go home where you can be alone. These thoughts are all consuming and every emotion can be felt. Consuming every ounce of you. This is only a small part of what anxiety feels like. This is what runs my life every single day. 

For as long as I can remember; I have always had anxiety.  I remember being a child worrying about the littlest of things.  My parents and teachers simply called me “shy”, which isn’t a word to describe me. It was in 2016 when my anxiety mixed with depression forced me to see a psychiatrist. I was at my lowest, but I knew that I needed to do something.

Before I could see the doctor, I went on vacation and slept for 15 hours. I was mentally and physically exhausted from trying to pretend that I was fine. A week later, I was prescribed medication for anxiety and depression. I am not ashamed of this. It took me months to finally admit to my best friends and my husband that was dealing with anxiety, depression, and OCD. I am lucky to have an amazing group of family and friends that understand, but some people are not so lucky. I find that a lot of people reject others because they simply do not know how to deal with it. I am writing this to break the stigma.

Mental health affects everyone. Did you know that people who identify as two or more races were more likely to report any mental illness within the past year than any other race/ethnic group?[1]  Were you aware that 39% of individuals who identify as LGBTQIA+ struggle with mental illness?[2] Anxiety disorder is among the most common mental illness in the United States. According to a 2023 study by Mental Health America; 21% of adults have experienced at least one mental illness (roughly 50 million people.) 55% of adults with a mental illness have not received any treatment. Per the CDC, 20.3% of adults have received any mental health treatment in the past 12 months; including 16.5% who have taken medication for their mental health. [3]

I love working for Brkthru and being part of an organization that celebrates diversity in such a positive way and allows everyone to celebrate and accept who they truly are. 

[1] Mental Health America;

[2] Mental Health America;

[3] Emily P. Terlizzi, M.P.H., and Tina Norris, Ph.D., Mental Health Treatment Among Adults: United States, 2020, CDC,,In%202020%2C%2020.3%25%20of%20adults%20had%20received%20any%20mental%20health,health%20professional%20(Figure%201).