I Choose Recovery, I Choose to Live Courageously

Here's to another great week! Ayanna Bates is a freshman at Pace University in New York City. She is majoring in psychology and aspires to be a Clinical Psychologist so she can help others who are suffering with mental illnesses. She advocates for Mental Health by passionately using social media to educate and inspire people, encourage hope in those who are suffering, and help break the stigma surrounding mental illnesses.  

a bates


The most important thing I have learned about Recovery is that it is a conscious choice that you have to make and fight for every single day. Some days are going to be unbearable and other days you will move through life happy with who you are becoming and grateful for another day.Living in the depths of depression and anxiety, using disordered eating behaviors to cope with it all, was a seemingly comfortable, lonely, world of darkness.I was tired of living in that world; I asked for help, went into therapy, and I am embracing the journey of Recovery.What does it mean to be happy? Being comfortable with who I am. Not being afraid to laugh and smile big, wear my favorite dress, eat my favorite foods, and talk about my passions. Interacting with the world and not regret my part in the conversation. Acknowledging and then letting go of the pain and continuing to walk with grace.Recovery brings along happiness but I can not ignore the bad days; the urges, the uncertainty, and the vulnerability. But I will not let the negative feelings consume me, I refuse to wear them like baggy clothing. I choose instead to wear strength, courage, inner beauty, depth, and rawness.I am trying to to be completely me and discover new parts of myself; the sound of my voice, what my laugh sounds like, what my own smile genuinely feels like.I vow that that I will keep trying every day, even in the face of defeat, I will try. And if I am tired, I will reward myself with a break. If I need to cry, I will. If I need to feel pain, I will. If I need to take a mental break, I will.But I will continue to try and lower my mask that is Depression, Disordered Eating, and Anxiety, and be completely me. Recovery is hope, inspiring, life changing, and a never ending journey.