Keep Moving FORWARD...

Photographer: Beverly Flannory

Let's Talk about Something REAL...

I wanted to take out the time to shine some light on Mental ILLNESS in our community. It is rarely the topic of discussion. I felt so strongly to write about this topic, I asked someone to co-write the blog post with me.

**Introducing, Joanne, based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Joanne is a wife, mother, blogger and real estate agent.

Thank you for having me to cowrite this blog post with you. This is a very touchy subject for me and I rarely speak on it. I think it definitely need to be talked about. I know this subject so well, I too, have been through some things that has caused depression.

I will like to give my spill...

At this moment in my life, I am all about self love. Loving me as I am and teaching people how to love me! Trust me, I mean EVERYONE in my life have to come correct. I have to protect my essence and energy.

It took me a while to get this point. It was not easy at all. I remember not having much confidence about myself. I grew up being the quiet and reserved little girl that read books and explored her imagination more often than her peers. I had a few friends growing up. I was not invited to the poppin’ parties. I learned at an early age, how to be alone but I did not have the confidence to be okay with being alone. I hated being alone. I hated sitting by myself while everyone else explored the school with their friends. Fast Forward.

At the age of 13, I was cold and angry. I was in a very dark place. While living in another state, away from my parents, I was molested by an uncle. Unfortunately, no one believed me. I moved back home, at the age of 14, I was raped again. And again... No one believed me. I was looked at as the "problematic child". I found myself leaving home and living on my own at a very young age. My childhood haunted me for years.

I thought drinking and drugs would help but it didn't. Actually, drinking and using drugs made it worse. I had an anger problem. I found myself, fighting and arguing all the time. I ended up in a toxic relationship that lasted for eight years. After the second year, the relationship became abusive. I was completely broken and found myself in deep depression. I contemplated suicide on a consistent basis.

Fortunately, I was able to find strength to get out of the relationship and move back home. I had so much to live for. I wanted to protect me, my daughter and my career. I decided to sign up for therapy to heal. In therapy, I learned to not use alcohol to cope with my depression.


I found myself in Bedford, Texas in a one bedroom apartment. ALONE... Oh shit, here comes the SILENCE. There were no co-existing with other energies. Just me... Learning about the energy I possess. I cried many nights simply because I was alone. So many of my friends and family felt like I was living too far so I rarely had visitors. (Bedford is only 45 minutes away from Dallas, LOL) I believe God me up to be alone. He knew it was one of my true weaknesses.

Don't get me wrong. In high school, I belonged to a group of friends. We did everything together but I found myself escaping them every once in a while. I needed "ME TIME". But... When I was 23 years old, balance was not an option. The only choice I had was isolation.

During this time, I found me. I travelled to another country alone and created my business. I also built my own website and completed two internships. In the mist of it all, I didn't realize the blessing that comes with isolation. I learned how to love me! I would do it all over again.