Salud Mental: Mental Health Awareness Month
Let’s talk salud mental! You may or may not know that I am a licensed social worker and work in the medical center. Meaning, during the “day” outside of Tierra, I spend my hours working with children and adolescents who have experienced a trauma or grief in their lifetime. In the past, I’ve worked for the largest school district in Houston and provided therapeutic interventions to children who were struggling with depression, suicide ideation, anxiety and many other mental health issues. In both settings my population has always been with Latinos.
How does Tierra, a place that is full of color and works from a place of what is thriving and working, have to do with mental health…?
Absolutely everything! We cannot thrive and function at our best capacity if our mind is not well. Mental health is not about illness but about full wellness. It is about thriving. Getting the help we need, practicing self-care and making sure MIND and BODY are working in sync. Starting this business, having employees and working with international artisans, my body and mind require me to check in with myself and a professional, to continue this small business venture.
Personally, friends and family will often hear me talk about therapy. The importance of talking to a professional about the messiness of life and even the beauty of growth. My life has changed because of each of those sessions. The ones where I wanted to walk out on my therapist and the ones where I thought, “bless her soul, she is in my head”! Tierra friends, as a community of color we must collectively de-stigmatize any mental health taboos and if needed, seek help.
A few stats from SAMHSA:
· As of 2016, 1.4 million Hispanics/Latinos reported having a serious mental illness in the past year
· As of 2016, 2.1 million Hispanic/Latinos reported having a Major Depressive Episode in the past year
· As of 2016, 1.3 million of Hispanic/Latinos reported having serious thoughts of suicide in the past year
We are not exempt from life adjustments. If you need help and would like to find a culturally competent mental health therapist please visit:
· https://www.elcentrodecorazon.org/ (sliding scale fees)
· https://www.legacycommunityhealth.org/ (sliding scale fees)
· https://gomezcounselingconsulting.com/what-is-trauma/ (Private Pay, Somatic Experiencing)
· https://www.texaschildrens.org/departments/trauma-and-grief-center (For Children ages 7-17)
One of the bravest things one can do is ask for help.
My personal best wishes on your journey,
P.S. I took a mental health break (from all things) the picture is a snapshot of the beginning of that time.