It's a great day when you can look at your own reflection and feel worthy of living, worthy of enjoying the life you have decided to create.
Not everyone will understand how the power of the mind can work against you, how daily thoughts of helplessness lead to dark places and control your every thought, every action and ultimately lead to what some still call a cowardly choice... Suicide.
My own journey through bipolar and suicide ideation led me to hospital with significant injuries after a suicide attempt, the very moment I thought I was going to die, was the moment I realised I wanted to live.
In the coming year, I had to dig deeper than I ever expected just to walk outside of my house, for months I hid in shame, guilt and embarrassment because I was one of 'those' people that tried to kill myself.
And work bloody hard I did.
I faced everything from reliving sexual abuse as a kid by a bloke I called dad, financial ruin, a broken family for my kids, affairs and it seemed like everything I did made everything worse.
3 more breakdowns, trips to hospitals and one day, it changed. I met someone that listened without judgement, he was a bloke with a lot of experience in the Mental Health field, and all he said was.... Go and do what you love, do one thing tomorrow you didn't do yesterday or today, don't try and prove anything to anyone, just be you, and don't try to find yourself by returning or rebuilding who you thought you were or should be now, and by all means possible, talk about what's happening for you, not what's happening to you.
So I rode my dirt bike, I drove my 4WD and above all, I got honest with myself.
Now, after a few years, I'm fortunate enough to have a will to live that exceeds my illness, the power of story telling and living life means I won't become a statistic and my kids will always have their Dad.
If you're struggling #itsoktotalk
Dig deep and have a chat with someone, anyone, because together we can prevent suicide.
My story is not uncommon, it's just a story, but I'm super proud it's one that has been used to create this organisation that puts prevention first and in some way changes the way we think about mental illness to help others see that hope is real.
Have an amazing day, see you on the trails.