I was a panelist for the Speak Your Mind Texas community conversation on teen and young adult mental health and substance abuse. It was a great experience and my first time being a part of panel. The turn out was great and I invited Daniel to attend with me. Believe it or not he actually participated at our table and openly spoke about his experience with his own mental health. He was even acknowledged by the facilitator and was given a round of applause by all the participants. I know for a fact that it made his night. He was also invited to speak about his experience with CPS and he said he would once he was ready to speak to a large group. For participating on the panel, I was interviewed by a local news channel KSAT 12 and made the 10 o'clock news and the next day I was also interviewed by Elise from Time Warner Cable news. Daniel was also interviewed by the local newspaper. Overall it was a great week.
Daniel is preparing himself for the first day back to school. He's nervous and he's been struggling a little but he is managing it. The best thing about it is that he has continued to inform me and it helps to know where he is at. In approximately 38 days, Daniel will have his first anniversary. One year without any hospitalizations. After 20+ hospitalizations how can we not acknowledge such a great accomplishment. Don't get me wrong there were moments of uncertainty but we made it. Yet again, NEVER GIVE UP ON HOPE.
To all my parents that follow our page. Please don't give up hope. If you see your child (Young or Old) struggling with something. Always ask "Are you okay?" "How are you?" "How can I help?" anything that will let them know you care. Kevin Hines said he stood crying on the Golden Gate Bridge. People walked passed him and no one asked him if he was okay. In fact a lady asked him to take pictures of her with her camera but didn't ask him if he was okay. He was visibly distraught. He said had anyone just asked once, he wouldn't have jumped. Imagine how that one moment could have prevented him from trying to commit suicide but no one appeared to care. Let's make a change and ask questions. Let's start saving lives instead of passing them up.