I always thought I was just a moody teenager. I didn't learn about mental health in high school, so I didn’t know what was happening when everything came crumbling down in my second year at MacEwan. I had just finished as production manager for A Midsummer Night’s Dream and I had such a fun time with that, and we were going into Reading Week. But when it was time to go back to school, I couldn’t get out of bed. That was my breaking point.
My doctor told me that I had many problems — like persistent depressive disorder — and told me I needed to take a break from school. I realized I had been struggling with mental health forever. My teachers were super supportive, but I just wasn’t comfortable explaining it to my classmates, so I made up a story about running off to Paris and that I would be back in January, but I eventually told them the truth.
I’m taking better care of myself and I haven't had a bad day in a while. I’ll definitely be watching out for the first-year students and telling them to pay attention to themselves. I’m going to mother the heck out of them. I want them to take better care of themselves than I did.
Saron is sharing her story as part of Changing Minds: Creating a healthy campus — an initiative that makes mental health a priority. The program connects training opportunities, support services, resources and stories from real people across the MacEwan University community.
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