We all want to live the good life. And when you grow up poor you often associate that with having money and being able to afford certain things, live a certain kind of lifestyle. That was me, small town girl moved to the big city, got educated, got a job, got small small money and made good – sort of.
I didn’t have a lot but I had enough and was living my dreams in many ways. Life being life, I got my fair share of Ls but I was dealing with it like you do, getting over stuff and “keeping it moving”. Then I started to realise more and more that I was deeply sad and didn’t know why. The sadder I got, the more randomn illnesses I had – migraine, heart palpitations, fainting spells you name it. Turns out the good life is not just a state of having but also a state of being.
Not knowing who to turn to I spoke a General Practitioner. They said I had classic symptoms of depression and referred me to a psychologist. At the time I struggled to find one who would accept my medical aid, struggled to find any therapist who would take me on as a client really. I have since realised just how hard it is generally to get professional mental health services of any kind in Zimbabwe, and how expensive.
Most people are going through what they are going through alone because they cannot get help. This is why I think we need to normalise talking about these things so people have the information and tools to take better care of their mental health by themselves so things don’t reach breaking point.