From breakdown to breakthrough.

For so long I was ashamed of my story. I hid behind closed doors, feeling like a total loser.

After the fire, having lost everything that mattered to me, I hit rock-bottom.

I knew I had to rebuild myself & my life from the very ground up, and to try to piece together the broken person I had become, with nothing of value to offer the world. Odds were stacked against me.

On the morning of my trial, after a sleepless night filled with terrifying visions of spending the rest of my days behind bars, feeling exhausted and desperate, I climbed over the railing of the attic terrace overlooking the pavement two and a half floors below. I aimed my head at the ground, imagining my skull cracking upon impact. “Only 9-10 metres. Better make each one count. Don’t want to wake up paralysed forevermore.”

However I didn’t jump (I was ‘this’ close multiple times). And later that day I was acquitted and free to go.

The tribulations didn’t end there, though, oh no…

But fast forward to today. Having turned my life around and now, as a criminal justice peer supporter, I’m able to help those who find themselves in a similar situation to the one I faced, feeling lonely, lost, isolated, misunderstood and suicidal.

To date I’ve been asked to share my story multiple times at various mental-health related occasions and events. The ongoing warmth and positive welcome I’ve received so far has made me say ‘yes’ to another podcast appearance. I feel ready to dig even deeper into my story with the hope it’ll help someone out there who is struggling right now.

Anne’s podcast is usually available only on audio, but she has kindly allowed me to use the video footage of our chat to share on my website and socials for people who like the visual aspect too. If any of the above resonates with you and you’d like to know more, please click below to check out the interview.

(Video edit: Liv Slania and Shais Ahmed)