Since I remember, I have had to face the world through a haze of mental-health disorders. Growing up in India, with blind prejudice against mental-health related issues, my family got torn apart by the dysfunction. "We are never talking about it but locking her up, and if needed, sending her to the mental hospital" was our approach to my mother. My brother and I both ran as fast and as soon as we could, to breathe.
This country gave me shelter. But more than that - it gave me the words and ways in which mental-health can be talked about and treated. And it was a gift that I took back to my mother, on my visit home, that allowed her to seek help and get better. Thanks to my learning and her work - she is now a functional and happy mother, wife, grandmother, cook and an artist. During all this, I too picked up deep depression and several anxiety disorders. I stumbled, fell, dropped into the abyss, soared in chaos and over shadow-lands, and like many considered suicide, a couple of times. But the world, this magical thing called life, the friends and family I have in this country - held me in a web of holding on - AND FIGHTING. One step, one day, one breath.
The journey I had already started, as an advocate, became a fight for survival. I realized I knew nothing - until it was mine. I read, I listened, I tried anything and everything that was suggested, I got help and I began to learn how to ride the waves, every day, to stay on top of depression and anxiety and other mind games. From self-help books to using my artistic tools (painting, theater, writing, storytelling, spoken word etc.), from cognitive behavioral therapy to homeopathy, from Ayurveda to talk therapy, from Hindu rituals and philosophy to shamanic practices of this land, I left no stone unturned. And finally, over last six years, under the guidance of my personal energy study teacher, I managed to pull them all together to create what I call is a toolkit, for not just survival, but for choosing happiness and living by it.
For those who have never had to get a taste of what it feels like, to live with nuances of mental-health issues, it's like wanting to breathe, but not being able to and yet not dying. I wish you never get a feel of that. But having done it for over 25 years now, and grown into a more mindful, more compassionate, more evolved a human being than I was before, I feel like it's my calling to bring my learning to all whom would allow me to serve them.
I have created a 10 week soul journey for a small group of women, who are ready and willing to go deep, play, explore and express, and allow the wisdom that they hold and new teachings that ring true to them - to heal and transform themselves. Enough - to walk out with day-to-day tools, practices and resources they can use, to Stay on Top of Anxiety, Depression and Other Mind Games.
I have a calling to serve and be of support to all mind warriors. Please feel free to reach out to me if and when appropriate.