Get over it. Snap out of it. Everyone has bad days. Just be happy. For millions of Americans suffering from depression, these are often the responses they hear. But depression is a serious illness that's difficult for many to understand. One in ten Americans suffer from depression. So what is life like for someone battling depression? Follow one courageous woman in her daily battle with depression in a powerful stage-play, "24 Hour Mind Battle” as she takes audiences through a moment by moment account of living with depression and what happened when she realized she couldn't fight this battle alone and got help.
Over 80% of those suffering from depression don't seek treatment. The stigma associated with depression forces many to live in shame rather than seek support or help. Whether you're suffering from depression or know someone who is, this play will change the way you see depression.
I was born in Philadelphia, PA and lived there until the age of 16. My family then moved to Willingboro, NJ where I graduated from Willingboro High School. Later I attended Burlington County College and graduated with an Associate's degree in Liberal Arts (concentrating on special education and Theatre Arts).
On March 2,1992 I married a wonderful man - Curtis Myers. We have two amazing, talented daughters - Charisse and Victoria. I love being a wife to Curtis and a mother to my girls! They mean the world to me!
Currently I serve as a substitute teacher for Burlington County NJ schools including Burlington County Special Services School District, which I absolutely adore! I also enjoy acting, writing, and directing plays.
Given my beautiful family and my rewarding work, you might ask, how did depression come into play? I can’t quite remember exactly when depression became a factor in my life. All I know is that when it did, it hit me hard. I once overheard a junior high school teacher remark that I was “just average”. Of all the things to remember about my childhood, that memory stuck out like a broken bone. It was something about the way she said the word “just”…like I was a reject or something. My ears not only heard “just average”, but I heard, “just dumb, just stupid, just not good enough”. But why was it affecting me as an adult all of a sudden? How was it that I couldn’t move past it? Then I realized that it had always affected me. Self consciously, I was always “just average”. I never thought that I was good enough or smart enough to achieve anything. I had a hard time pushing myself to achieve past being “just average”. It’s like I believed that that was where I belonged. That was my place in life…”just average”.
So yes, these thoughts followed me all the way into adulthood. However, sometime after I became a wife and a mother, it seemed that depression crept in, and thickened until I couldn’t function properly. The fear of being “just” an average wife and mother overwhelmed me. No one knew what I was feeling inside, because I kept it to myself. Too ashamed to share with anyone, I was afraid that people would judge me, and dismiss me as crazy. Like any disease, it spread and infected just about every area of my life until “just average” over shadowed me. I considered taking my own life. After all, who wants a wife and mother who’s “just average”. Soon it elevated into who wants a friend, sister, or co-worker who is “just average”? I figured that everyone would be better off without me. I’m so glad that I now realize that those things simply were not true. My family and friends need me. Furthermore, I am very smart and capable of achieving great things. Though very reluctant, I thank God that I got up enough courage to get help.
It’s been quite a journey. But through persistent prayer, professional counseling, and family support, today I am doing well. Ultimately, I have discovered that part of my healing comes by simply sharing my story with others, with people who really need to hear it, with people who need a sense of hope. They too are perhaps battling depression or know someone who is.
I’ve developed a strong desire and passion to encourage people who are battling depression to get the help that they need. It absolutely breaks my heart when I hear or read about someone taking his or her own life as a result of depression. I know what it feels like to be in that very, very dark place. So whenever possible, I share, share, share.