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Capri’s Story

“My life changed because my level of conscious awareness changed.”

Share your stigma experience.

I was depressed for over 20 years and didn’t even know it. I knew I was hurt, I knew I was in pain, I knew I hated my life, but I didn’t know I was depressed. I did a great job covering up my feelings by self-medicating; I would drink to “feel” something different because I was so unhappy and felt so powerless. I drank to dance, to laugh, to escape into an alternate universe and eventually I started drinking at work to endure the grueling 12-hour midnight shifts. I felt imprisoned in an existence I had no idea how to change.

I lived with the stigma of depression and racism: I wasn’t white enough for white people, I wasn’t Puerto Rican enough for Puerto Ricans, and I wasn’t black. Who was I? I had no idea. This caused a huge idenity problem for me because I had grown up in the foster care system, void of any consistent relationships with my family where identity is supposed to be first formed. There I was in a world trying to find my place, but I had no place because I had no self-love. The problem was I had no idea of who I was at my core. I lacked a self-concept and no matter where I went there was always someone there to remind me I didn’t fit in. “Go back to where you came from you mud nigger” some white girls said to me in high school. “Why are you trying to act black and take our men” some black girls would say when I was in my 20s. And even at 40 years of age when I was meeting some of my family for the first time, my Puerto Rican cousin sarcastically said “Well, I guess she has some of our blood in her”. With every jab a piece of me always died because what I knew to be true was that I was in this world completely alone. It crushed me and led me to isolate.

Having lost all my biological family, my husband who was the love of my life, and my best friend, I kept finding myself over the years comforted by my rum and coke. During my depression, I could count on it. It never let me down until it almost killed me. I consider myself a miracle because today I am a successful author, speaker, psychotherapist, and hypnotherapist. I’m not even quite sure how that happened; oh wait, I do. It happened the night my boyfriend held me down and abused me. All I could do was look into the devil’s eyes and cry because I was physically bound by the weight of his body on top of mine. That night I hit rock bottom and sank to my lowest low. That night, I was set free. My consciousness awakened and I was introduced to a new version of myself. I was 37 years old and I finally woke-up.

How did you overcome this experience?

I overcame my depression somewhere between my boyfriend holding me down on the couch that fateful night and me sleeping in my car in my girlfriend’s parking lot. When I awakened the next morning, something had shifted in me. I started seeing life through a new lens. Although I still had a lot of transformation ahead, I was no longer just the recipient of my life experiences; I became the creator of them. I stopped looking for people to love us and I began to love us. I went from being a passenger of my life to being the driver.

Help others by sharing a brief, positive message.

My life changed because my level of conscious awareness changed. I had been reading personal growth and development books for about 7 years, so when I hit rock bottom, my mind was already primed to awaken. I highly recommend consuming self-improvement books, youtubes and podcasts.

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