Tell us a little about yourself.
I was born and raised in Washington, DC and I've proudly remained a DC resident. Growing up a bi-racial child, I was confused and unsure of my place in this world. As an adult, I've embraced my uniqueness! I've been a career musician since 1994, and it's provided me a ticket to see the world. I love God, great food, traveling, DC sports teams, music, and helping people whenever and wherever I can. I truly believe in paying it forward.
How has mental illness affected your life?
Significantly. There are events from my childhood and my upbringing that I've had much difficulty processing as an adolescent and adult. I am also a recovering drug addict and alcoholic, and mental illness has been my constant, although unwanted, companion. Understanding the causes and triggers of my mental illness over time has led me down a much more serene road. However, like my addiction, I know my mental illness "issues" will always lie in waiting. But I feel I'm much better prepared to identify them and address them accordingly.
Why did you want to be a part of This Is My Brave?
Because I saw it as an opportunity to learn more about mental illness from people who truly understand, and also as an opportunity to help others by sharing my experience, strength, and hope.
What inspires you to get (or stay) mentally healthy?
Living an active and healthy lifestyle I find inspires me to stay mentally and physically fit. Hearing the stories of others who who've addressed and overcome mental illness inspires me greatly. Hearing about people who've asked for help and gotten the help they needed is truly inspirational. If they can do it, then why can't I?
What do you hope the audience takes away from the show?
That they are not unique, and that there are people just like them who understand what they're going through. That when they feel overwhelmed by hopelessness...there is still HOPE. I also hope they take away that, just like anything in life, if you want to address something...you must find the courage to take action. Help is readily available for those who seek it. As the saying goes..."If nothing changes...nothing changes."