May 3rd, 2015 I attended the Walk So Kids Can Talk 5km walk or run! This was an amazing opportunity to get in shape for nationals and also to support an organization that has helped me so much when I was younger.
Growing up, I was bullied a lot. Whether it was for my weight, who I talked to in school or my personality, I was the target of these attacks that have stayed with me through all these years. I had coped with these feelings in so many different ways, all unhealthy. I started retaliating, bullying the ones that bullied me but I soon learned that it just made things worse. I started taking the pain out on myself by self harming. I am happy to say that I am 5 months clean and I have to thank all the support of my family, friends and councilors that keep me busy and fighting everyday! When I first started self harming and having thoughts of suicide, I called the Kids Help Phone. Many of my first calls lead to me dialing, hanging up mid-ring and than 5 minutes later calling again. It was so nice to have a pal at the end other end of the line; I never felt alone. The loneliness, I find, is the hardest part to deal with. You’re trapped inside your own mind with just the constantly refreshing thoughts of the insults; some that people have thrown at you, others you murmur to yourself. It’s so incredible to have a support team at the Kids Help Phone, ready, trained and prepared for any situation you throw their way. You are never alone in this world, and once you can see that, it is the most beautiful feeling of relief.
I had the pleasure of walking with such a lovely team, Team Courtney. Courtney Brown was a incredible girl, but due to her being as incredible as she was, people decided to attack her. In 2011, Courtney took her life. Ever since, her wonderful parents take part in this event to help raise money to support kids and teens across Canada in staying safe, happy, and cared for. It was such an honor to be representing not only Airdrie, but Courtney, Jamie Hubley, Leelah Alcorn and so many others that have lost their life due the fight inside their mind. There’s a quote that I hold dearly in my heart; “For you I shall live.” I have attempted to take my life several times in the past 3 years, and been hospitalized 90% of my teenage life. I have this opportunity now, to look at myself and change, to live for those who can’t anymore, to not be another number in a psychology book. 1 in 10 people diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder will take their life, and I have made a promise to my mom, my friends, my city, myself and to the teens like Courtney, that I will not be that one. I will be the one that stands proud and says “this is who I am, but it’s not all that I am,” I will live my life and cherish every moment I have with this world. When I wear this crown upon my head, for me it is a symbol of gratitude, strength and accomplishment. So many told me I’d never pass a bylaw, I did. I was told I’d never change the way people look at mental health, I have. Now, I will represent my city, myself, and the voices that can no longer be heard, but surely never be forgotten in my reign.
PS. T-MINUS 2 months till nationals! So much left to do, I’m so excited!!
Until next time,
Miss Teenage Airdrie 2015, Mackenzie