My name is Amanda and I struggle with mental illness on a day to day basis. I’ve been diagnosed with OCD, depression, anxiety, and ADHD. Like many others, I struggle with a variety of mental illness. After many doctors appointments, mental breakdowns, and a pharmacy full of trial and error of medications, my mental status has went from being rock bottom to almost completely manageable. There is hope out there for everyone but it usually takes a lot of time and patience. I am beyond happy with the amount of medical resources that are out there for people with mental illness to utilize, however I wish there were more public awareness. Mental illness is a real thing and many people just believe that people like me are “crazy”, which is really not the case at all. I have a chronic illness that I didn’t ask for. It was what I was handed in life so I’ve had to learn to make the best out of the situation. My illness is no different than other chronic illnesses. If more of the population were made aware of mental illness then less people would be ashamed of their illness and more likely be open about their problems and seek medical help. I feel there has not been enough education or awareness given to the general public. Mental illness is something that is real and is here to stay, so it is more than important for awareness to increase. On another note, I would like to encourage everyone struggling with any type of mental illness to never give up on anything. Throughout my struggles, I have managed to balance caring for my 3 children, school, and a full time job. I’m not going to lie and say it has been easy because it hasn’t been. I have trusted in God and just told myself repeatability to never give up. I could go on and on and on about everything I’ve been through but I’m not because one, you will be reading for days and two, I have found it’s better to push your hardest to overcome your battles and avoid dwelling on things that can’t really be reversed. The best advice I can give is to be happy, live happy, and know that you can do anything you put your mind to. Just remember you can overcome any kind of obstacle or speed bump in life. Yes, it would be easier if the whole world understood our problems, but for now, until there is more awareness, we’ve got to help each other and lean on God and on the people who love us. I wish anyone with any extent of mental illness the best of luck. I can only pray that one day more people will be more understanding to these illnesses.