I’ve been proud to be a Mental Health Advocate for nearly six years. In the midst of this crisis I’ve had moments when I have completely detached from news reports and stepped back from advocating for others.
I would call that survival. Doing the best I can with the situation to cope.
And then I return to my usual habits and begin to delve into data, reading and gaining knowledge. Upon reflection I realized how dire this situation is for the most vulnerable among us, those who are living in institutions of any kind and the homeless population. Those who work in those environments. Healthcare workers who are trying to save people’s lives. Truck drivers delivering packages and products. Essential workers going out everyday and putting themselves at risk in an unknown fashion.
I think about the stars in our community who are preparing meals for others. I think about courageous leaders who are making courageous choices to be conservative until having more information.
And one could arguably say I most likely think too much. But it’s both my strength and weakness. I’d rather have these profound moments of reflection and self-correction than live with my head in the sand.
I’ve learned the hard way I walk a very fine line between advocating, coaching and supporting others, while trying to manage my own challenges. At the end of the day, I decided if I don’t use my gifts, talents, skills, insights and what platform I do have, I will not be satisfied with myself.
On that note, I have learned to try and direct my frustrations with the unknown to the things I can control. Sometimes I win and sometimes I lose in that balance.
Some have said, “we are all in this together.” But I think the reality is we are all just trying our best to navigate and play the cards we have been dealt. Some have a far better hand than others. But I’ve learned in life to play the hand you have…and maybe just maybe…you’ll end up coming out ahead.
I deeply care about Mental Health Advocacy. I care a lot for others. And I’m trying to do better in giving a voice to those who don’t have one.
Will you join me if you can?