For Mental Illness Awareness Week (MIAW), that is.
Last year, it took me by surprise.
But this year, I ordered the materials last month and I got them yesterday. Posters, brochures, bookmarks and wristbands.
I have them on display at the studio now. Some of my fellow team members work in the health field so they took a bunch of them to display at their workplaces too.
There was a time when I would rather die than admit I had a mental illness. There was a time when I thought people would run away from me if they knew. That I would lose my job and nobody would hire me ever again.
But not anymore. I now understand that if I am not open about my illness, I am contributing to perpetuating the stigma. If I don’t feel comfortable talking about mental illness, mine, my children’s, my friend’s, I am only making the paradigm even more rooted in our society.
So I’m wearing the orange MIAW wristband and I’m hoping a lot of people will ask me what it means!