Being a metal health advocate… Okay I’ve done that bit a bit too much on here. Let just start off with saying Charlamagne tha God’s book Shook One: Anxiety Playing Tricks on Me could not have come at a more convenient time. Being an African resident where mental illness is linked to demons or just laziness I feel we need to talk more about it than ever. If you haven’t watched my #LetsTalkMentalHealth clip please do.
One of the things that really got to me about what Charla’ said in the book was how being scared got him his success. Having dealt with depression and anxiety personally I know it can be a crippling thing and it helps knowing that you are not alone.
I have learnt to face my fears head on, which I would have avoided at all costs. A hyperactive brain as a creative bring out the best in you but it also brings out the worst in you. The perfectionist in me never sees like I do enough or have achieved enough for me to earn rest. As much as it pushes me to do more it could also spiral out of control and send me down a depression wormhole.
Through this book I have realized that I do need someone to talk to or just vent to. I’m thankful that the woman in my life understands this and has supported me when I needed it most. In turn I know that I will be there for her when she needs me.
I thought PTSD only affected soldiers that have been to wars. Growing up in developing Africa counselling is not something that is valued. You just have to tough it out. Which is wrong! I did not know I once had PTSD until this year. It took me 4 years to get over the death of my father. When he passed away I didn’t cry, not a single tear shed, which confused the living daylights out of me because my dad and I shared more than just a name, he also doubled up as the older brother I never had. A few days after I was diagnosed with bronchitis, which was treated but mentally I wasn’t the same. Maybe that’s the reason why I never bonded as much with my mother as I should have because a year after I’d finally dealt with dad’s passing she left. What followed was a year of zombie-like routine.
So yeah, I too am a shook one. If you have dealt with mental illness or know someone who has this is an eye-opening book. I’m still reading it but already this is what I have learnt from this brilliant idiot.
My mental wellness journey is a daily commitment and I hope my journey motivates others just like this book has motivated me.