These past couple of years have been hard. Since the pandemic began in 2020, many people have been battling mental health issues. In some cases, they are new issues that had never come up before. In others, pre-existing issues have just gotten worse. That's the case for me.

I've always tried to be open about my mental health, but if I'm being totally honest, lately I've been trying to handle everything myself. I'm not sleeping well, little things are impacting me more than they used to, and I'm living in a constant state of anxiety. I've been trying to find a medication that works AND doesn't give me terrible side effects, but it's been a bit of a struggle so far. The worse my anxiety gets, the more embarrassed I am to talk about it, and that's a big problem.

When I was 8-years-old, my dad died by suicide. Today, July 1st, is the anniversary of his death. I used to think he was selfish. That he didn't love us enough to stay. But as I've gotten older, I've come to understand the state of mind he was in when he made the decision that he did. It's a hard concept to grasp, but it's also important that it's openly discussed. I really feel that it's the only way that other people battling the same thoughts can feel comfortable enough to open up and get the help that they need.

Courtlin
Courtlin
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If you are struggling with your mental health, you are not alone. Your loved ones are absolutely not better off without you. You are not worthless. Your situation is not helpless. Please, don't be embarrassed to ask for help. As someone who has lost someone to suicide, I can confirm that your absence is felt every single day by the people that love you. It's not something that anybody ever really gets over. You belong here.

From what I know, I got my dad's love of music and movies, his passion for martial arts, his weird sense of humor, and his awesome hair (as seen below). I just wish I had also gotten more time to get to know him. Rest in peace, pops. We love you!

Courtlin
Courtlin
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Courtlin
Courtlin
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Courtlin
Courtlin
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