Jessica Slyhoff

NAMIWalks Colorado

Welcome to my personal NAMIWalks fundraising page.  I am supporting NAMI because the work they do is very important to me. NAMI (the National Alliance on Mental Illness) is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans impacted by mental illness, and this is MY story. 

I was diagnosed with major depressive disorder and anxiety 15 years ago. Since then, I took my antidepressants daily, met with a therapist weekly and participated in suicide trainings and mental illness education.  I didn't realize just how lucky, or better yet, privileged I was to have all these resources available.

Five months ago I decided to leave a toxic work environment in order to focus on my mental health and wellness. Ironically, the end of my employment also came with the end of my mental health resources. I was denied Medicare, almost forced to pay $600 for 90 days worth of antidepressants (thank goodness for rebate sites like goodRX), and could not catch a break. I wanted nothing more than to tap out; I was weak, exhausted and defeated.  Friday, 4/13, I was hospitalized for the very first time. My husband was strong enough to recognize that this was bigger than the both of us. I was discharged a little after midnight with the resources to keep me safe. 

I share my story because I am hopeful that there will be a day that those suffering with mental illness don't have to hit rock bottom before finally getting the help they need. NAMI is working to do just that. NAMI provides weekly, FREE group counseling sessions that I've been taking advantage of since February 2018. This group has become a safe place for me to talk, cry, sympathize, get feedback and most of all–not feel alone.

Please consider a donation to NAMI. Your donation will make a difference and help people and families affected by mental illness in the Colorado region. It has truly made a difference in my life. Thank you for your support! 

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