We are so excited to begin introducing you to our Kansas City team! The show is Sunday, May 7th at the H & R Block City Stage at Union Station at 2:00 p.m.
Today we meet Kansas City Co-Producer, Erica Williams.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am the wife of a pastor, a mom, a board member for the Greater Kansas Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), a field advocate for the AFSP, a mental health advocate, a celebrateur, fashion time-traveler, storyteller, tutu runner, and creative weirdo.
How has mental illness affected your life?
Back when I attempted suicide, I had no idea I was actually struggling with a mental illness since these two subjects were taboo at the time. By the time I was finally diagnosed with depression, it had already affected relationships, things I loved to do, and my job at the time.
Why did you want to be a part of This Is My Brave?
When I first heard about This Is My Brave, and I realized it was about others telling their stories of resilience on their on mental illness journeys, I knew I wanted to be a part of this somehow! I looked to see when it was coming to Kansas City. When I realized it wasn’t, I wanted to see how to get it here. I know I do better when talking about my battle & struggles, and I found there are others out there wanting to do the same.
How do you stay mentally healthy?
I need to keep myself mentally healthy for my family, for my friends, and for my advocacy. When I slip & figure out (sometimes others have to nudge me) that I might not be in a good place, I feel a bit hypocritical since I try to keep others encouraged to stay mentally healthy themselves. I also need to just stay mentally healthy to be able to enjoy life as I try to live it to the fullest!
What do you hope the audience takes away from the show?
When the audience experiences This Is My Brave, I hope they come away with a better understanding of the array of mental illnesses out there & how they can effect anyone. The amazing cast we have will show that mental illness doesn’t discriminate & can affect anyone in their lives…and maybe even themselves. And if they are the one struggling, I hope the show encourages them to know they aren’t alone, step up to get help & maybe share their journey, too.