Youth Speaker

“Sometimes something so bone-shaking happens to us that it creates a timestamp on our lives. We might see it as, ‘my life before x,’ and, ‘my life after x’. Unfortunately, I experienced quite a few of these moments in my life; Trauma after trauma, for what felt like years on end. After escaping from a dangerous situation in my youth, I began my journey of recovery. It took years of self-advocacy to find the correct diagnosis, but once I did and began the right treatment, I found hope at the end of the tunnel. I began to learn coping strategies and how to set healthy boundaries. I learned that it’s okay to say no, and it’s okay to move at my own pace. Most importantly, I learned to accept myself as I am. I hope that by sharing my story I can empower others to advocate for themselves and find the self-acceptance that we all deserve. Recovery might not be a straight line, but it is always possible.”