Her Migrant Story

Stories Shared By Women Activists

From the Shadow of Trauma to the Light of Awareness

It’s a Friday afternoon, I’m sitting at my window enjoying the sun, the smell of nature, the tree right before the apartment starts burgeoning, it’s Spring 2022!

A few years earlier, none of this was noticeable to me… I was too absorbed by my problems and my pains… my trauma was speaking louder than anything surrounding me.

I recall this day when I was walking in the streets of NYC, and I suddenly started crying – this lady stopped by and asked how she could help, I couldn’t stop crying, I just wanted my beautiful and successful past life to come back, but I knew in my inner self that this was gone forever and that I would have to adjust and adapt if I wanted to make it.

I had to put myself in survival mode and quiet my pain – First thing was to make a living, I then found a job, … I remember these days as if it was yesterday – every morning, I pretended everything was alright in my life, but once I got back home, I was the unhappiest person in the world. I recall going to bed every night and praying to God that I didn’t want to wake up anymore. I lost hope in humanity, everyone I encountered was a potential threat to me.

After the trauma, it was difficult to trust again. I saw the devil in anyone who approached me in a certain way, I suspected everyone was trying to hurt me. I was emotionally unstable: sometimes laughing, then a minute later crying. What a mess I was!

I attended a few counseling sessions, I participated in a couple of yoga activities that helped to control my mood… But the pain was still there!

In 2021, when I joined HMH I was very far from realizing how much I would learn about mental health…in the society where I come from mental health is associated with craziness, someone who lost his/her mind.

At HMH, we feel listened to, nobody will judge you, nobody will take advantage of you, it’s all about sharing, and serving!

Meeting after meetings, I was able to name each mental symptom I experienced: excessive paranoia, worry, anxiety, long-lasting sadness, and irritability. But I’m glad I’m using the past tense as today my life is much better and I’m emotionally stable even though I will never forget.

I’m glad to be an asset for HMH and will continue to contribute as much as possible.

Thank you,

Lilly

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