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From Suicide to Finding my Passion

There is Hope

By Sam HamiltonPublished 3 months ago 3 min read
Created with Adobe Firefly: A prompt based generative AI tool

My 2023 started with deep dark thoughts and feelings that I couldn’t shake. I took medical leave from college, tried marijuana for the first time, found myself in the car as my “friend” dealt drugs, and landed myself in a Mental Health hospital not once, but twice, for a total of five agonizing months.

As I recount this story, I’m astounded by the fact that I emerged from the darkness. I’ve struggled with mental illness my whole life, stemming from a mixture of genetics and childhood trauma. I thought I had “gotten over” episodes of deep depression as I grew older and entered my late 20’s, but there I stood in the hospital at age 28 feeling as desperate as ever for a way out.

It was my second admission to hospital that was a life changer. In my second admission, I received ECT (Electroconvulsive Therapy) for three months and nearing the end of that admission my mood took a dramatic shift. I was able to think about my future and actually see a future for myself. That deep seeded emotional pain seemed to lessen. I finally cared about life again and could feel enjoyment.

Thinking about it as a type I have tears in my eyes because I am so thankful for the treatment I received. I literally went from attempting to kill myself while hospitalized in a locked ward to applying for jobs and attending virtual interviews from my hospital bed.

While I didn’t get hired, probably for the best at the time, I made it out alive with a sense of purpose and a future oriented mindset.

The summer of 2023 was a bit of a struggle to get through as my days had no structure and I was just waiting in limbo for school to start in the fall. My physical health was declining and I was gaslighting myself about my health.

The fall semester rolled around and I started back in college for my last semester and I felt so relieved to be part of society again.

Somehow I discovered the app Goodnotes and started creating a digital planner for myself. Through that fad I learned about digital stickers. I thought to myself, maybe I can create digital stickers. From there I went down a rabbit hole of YouTube videos learning how to create digital stickers using Procreate, and eventually I switched over to Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Fresco.

Over the past month and a half I made a dramatic change. I cancelled all my subscriptions to streaming platforms and replaced them with a Creative Cloud All Access Subscription.

I replaced habits of mindlessly watching tv shows and feeling like I’m not accomplishing anything to listening to YouTube how tos and tips while drawing art on my iPad. I spent all of my free time learning how to draw and learning about selling on Etsy.

Every day I am learning something new and improving. While, I am a newborn baby in the world of selling digital products, I feel so much passion and drive for what I am doing. Some may argue that I’m using this new business venture to escape my emotions, and they might be right, but at least I can channel my efforts into something that will support my journey towards healing and self-discovery. And, maybe I can make some money to fund my therapy! Laughs awkwardly…

And so, I conclude this chapter of my story, but if you’ve found your way here and are curious to learn more, consider taking this journey with me. Follow along as I navigate the highs and lows of this exciting new chapter in my life.

Before you go

Originally posted October 30, 2023 on Medium:

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About the Creator

Sam Hamilton

I am a Social Service Worker student and small business owner writing about my journey through college, self improvement, mental health, disability, millennial experience, learning to code, digital art, and much more.

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  • Naveed 3 months ago

    Well done! Keep pushing forward with your excellent work

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