Since becoming a community ambassador for RUOK Charity, I’ve been speaking openly about my journey as a teenager with mental health, in order to show others that hope and light can come out of the darkness of mental health. As sharing this journey opens me up to being vulnerable, the importance of spreading faith helps me overcome that challenge. This is also why I’m so passionate about supporting RUOK Charity, not just with my finances but my time too.
Emma Taylor at the 2018 R U OK charity convey launch – spreading light to who she meets.
I love the idea that the RUOK motto is “A conversation can change a life”. It’s a powerful yet simple thought, isn’t it? It’s got me pondering that by sharing my own story I can hopefully be a light to those who struggle in silence with mental health. I hope I can be a lighthouse at that moment, by being vulnerable and real with my audience, I might come across as a bright light that’s all-consuming like a lighthouse or a flash on your camera. It might be blinding to look at if you’re coming out of the darkness but anyone who has struggled with mental health and suicide knows how dark it can get in those seasons. Without a doubt, I wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for unexpected friends and family being that lighthouse to me during that time in my life.
I feel like it’s my mission and purpose in life to challenge myself and spread the message of R U OK Charity. A conversation we have, a message or text we send could really change a life. I know there are always people who can make you feel worse or say the wrong thing when your struggling. I had a kid at school tell me during my dark time at 15 years old that “I’m worthless and should just kill myself”. Hearing that in a low moment in my life clearly didn’t help, and it set me off on an awful spiral downhill. But, I also know if it weren’t for the few friends who looked out for me and stood by me while I went through this dark time, I wouldn’t be where I am today.
One thing I have learnt is that life is full of seasons, and although the lows can be really low, there will always be someone who can be your lighthouse. Just look up and open yourself up to someone who you trust and supports you. Trust me nothing you say to your close family and friends will ever change how much they love you. When I look back and reflect when I was 15 years old in that horrible season of life, I had no idea how low I could get and how the darkness almost took me away from the light I could see at the end of the tunnel I was in.
I’ve learnt doubt will give you faith, fear will give you trust, darkness will give you light and defeat will give you victory!! Does that mean we will go through life with no struggles, down days or hard times? No, it simply means that the backdrop we view the darkness will be replaced with truth, hope and an inner voice that will get you through any season that comes at us in our future.
“Be that beacon of light in someone darkness”
“Light Trumps Darkness every time!”
“I walk in darkness so others can see the light”
Kate Taylor – Founder – Managing Director of TaylorCare Recruitment