What Mental Health Awareness Month Means To Me

What Mental Health Awareness Month Means To Me

Anxiety shouldn't define who I am, but it does.
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Anxiety has always been a big part of my life. It determines whether or not I get out of bed in the morning or what I will do that day based on how I feel. My sophomore year of high school, I was officially diagnosed with severe anxiety. I had always gotten nervous about big events or tests or presentations, but this was completely different.

There were many things that ultimately lead up to me going to see someone to get diagnosed. Once I had gotten the diagnosis, everything changed. Me getting out of bed in the morning now depended on what my anxiety was telling me, as opposed to what my body was telling me such as if I was too sick to get out of bed. Participating in activities was also a struggle because if I did not feel good about an event, as in thinking about that event made my anxiety spike through the roof, then I did not participate.

This changed my personality also. I used to be so outgoing. I used to go up to anyone and everyone and talk to them, and suddenly I shut down. If I didn't know someone, I wouldn't go up to them and start a conversation. When I was introduced to people I was very reserved and quiet. I am a very outgoing person, once my anxiety calms down and I am able to show my true self without that one thing stopping me.

Anxiety has also changed the way I saw myself and saw other people. I started to put others before myself and started neglecting myself completely. I still do. I put my own thoughts and feelings and opinions aside because I am so anxious about what other people think of me. I have a really hard time presenting myself to others because I am so obsessed with making the other person like me.

I have had to learn many hard life lessons. These are things that I am still learning and coping with. I need to not neglect myself. I have to put myself first. I also have to learn and understand that not everyone is going to like me. This is the one thing that I have the most trouble with because I want everyone to like me and if they don't, my anxiety spikes every time I am around them.

I have had such a strong support system through my journey. My mom is my absolute rock and is always there for me no matter what. I can always count on her to make me feel less anxious when my anxiety hits me hard, which it has recently. College has been a struggle for me. My anxiety has definitely shaped my college experience and I regret it. I want to not listen to my anxiety and be able to enjoy college, and sometimes I just can't. My grandma has been a huge part of helping me cope with my anxiety in college also. I know I can always call her and she will give me the best advice and help me get through whatever I am going through.

Cover Image Credit: Taylor Dean

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44 Lyrics For When You Need An Instagram Caption

Your caption is just as important as the filter.
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Choosing the caption for your Instagram can be almost as challenging as deciding on a filter. So, if you’re ready to post that Insta, but don’t know what to say, here are 44 lyrics for when you need an Instagram caption.

1. “Be young, be dope, be proud.” - Lana Del Rey, "American"

2. “I can’t really see another squad tryna cross us.” - Drake, "No Tellin’"

3. “Darling I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream.” - Taylor Swift, "Blank Space"

4. “I’m throwin' shade like it’s sunny.” - Nicki Minaj, "Want Some More"

5. “I’m gonna live like tomorrow doesn't exist.” - Sia, "Chandelier"

6. “Find me where the wild things are.” - Alessia Cara, "Wild Things"

7. “If I was you, I'd wanna be me too.” - Meghan Trainor, "Me Too"

8. “Sweet like candy to my soul, sweet you rock and sweet you roll.” - Dave Matthews Band, "Crash Into Me"

9. “I swear this life is like the sweetest thing I’ve ever known.” - Drake, "Over"

10. “I hope you never lose your sense of wonder.” - Lee Ann Womack, "I Hope You Dance"

11. “But if you close your eyes, does it almost feel like nothing’s changed at all? - Bastille, "Pompeii"

12. “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.” - John Lennon, "Imagine"

13. “You can’t choose what stays and what fades away.” - Florence + The Machine, "No Light, No Light"

14. “She acts like summer and walks like rain.” - Train, "Drops of Jupiter

15. “She’s a good girl, loves her mama. Loves Jesus, and America too.” - Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, "Free Fallin’"

16. “Lights will guide you home, and ignite your bones.” - Coldplay, "Fix You"

17. “Say you’ll remember me.” - Taylor Swift, "Wildest Dreams"

18. I’ve got thick skin and an elastic heart.” - Sia, "Elastic Heart"

19. “Give me the beat boys and free my soul.” - Uncle Kracker, "Drift Away"

20. “One of these days the clocks will stop, and time won’t mean a thing.” - Foo Fighters, "These Days"

21. “Sunshine mixed with a little hurricane.” - Brad Paisley, Perfect Storm

22. “You are the piece of me I wish I didn’t need.” Zedd feat. The Foxes, "Clarity"

23. “Her mind is Tiffany twisted, she’s got the Mercedes bends.” - The Eagles, "Hotel California"

24. “Life imitates art.” - Lana Del Rey, "Gods And Monsters"

25. “Nobody said it was easy, no one said it would be this hard.” - Coldplay, "The Scientist"

26. “You’re gonna keep my soul, it was yours to have long ago.” - State Radio, "Keepsake"

27. “Celebrate we will ‘cause life is short but sweet for certain.” - Dave Matthews Band, "Two Step"

28. “It’s always darkest before the dawn.” - Florence + The Machine, "Shake it Out"

29. “There are many things I’d like to say to you but I don’t know how.” - Oasis, "Wonderwall"

30. “You say you want a revolution, well you know we all wanna change the world.” - The Beatles, "Revolution"

31. “God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy.” Billy Currington, "People Are Crazy"

32. “Well my heart is gold, and my hands are cold.” - Halsey, "Gasoline"

33. “I don’t want to be heard, I want to be listened to.” - Twenty One Pilots, "Forest"

34. “Where you invest your love, you invest your life.” - Mumford and Sons, "Awake My Soul"

35. “I think I need a sunrise, I’m tired of the sunset.” - Augustana, "Boston"

36. “All of these lines across my face tell you the story of who I am.” - Brandi Carlile, "The Story"

37. ‘Ready or not, here I come. Where you at? The night is young.” - Bridgit Mendler, "Ready or Not"

38. “In the land of Gods and Monsters, I was an angel.” - Lana Del Rey, "Gods And Monsters"

39. “Turns out not where, but who you’re with that really matters.” - Dave Matthews Band, "Best Of What’s Around"

40. “Know yourself, know your worth.” - Drake, "0 to 100"

41. “I’m little but I’m coming for the crown.” - Lorde, "Still Sane"

42. “Didn’t they tell you I was a savage?” - Rihanna, "Needed Me"

43. “Hands in the air like we don’t care.” - Miley Cyrus, "We Can’t Stop"

44. “I’ma keep running because a winner don’t quit on themselves.” - Beyonce, "Freedom"

Cover Image Credit: https://pixabay.com

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15 Rules I Broke In Less Than A Year

Breaking a 200 year tradition
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Growing up in a conservative Hispanic environment, moving out at 18 wasn’t exactly in the cards. Moving to one of America’s most liberal cities caused an uproar that led many to comment “she will go astray”. I took a bat against the glass wall and stepped out of the white veil, yellow house, white fence, traditionalist view. Into a "I have $10 dollars on my bank account and protest for human rights." Below are 15 Rules I broke in less than a year:

1. "You can only move out once you're married"

No, in fact I am moving out at 18, for college. By the way, I will be living in San Francisco. Yes, the city where the rainbow flags adorn every corner. No, I won’t have anyone cook or clean for me. Pepper spray? It really doesn’t help while walking through the Tenderloin.

2. "This tastes amazing! You can get married now!"

Thank you, I actually don’t like to cook. That was actually boxed mashed potatoes.

3. "There are topics of conversation that aren't appropriate between women and men"

I just got back from a night out with friends. Guys and girls, yes. We spoke about the sex-obsessed Tinder culture. We actually found friends on Tinder and super liked them to mess with them.

4. "He has to text you first"

No, you know this is the 21st century. Actually, Bumble can back me up on that.

5."25 is the prime age to get married. If you miss this deadline, you might as well kiss marriage goodbye"

Yeah, I actually am almost 5 years away from that deadline and so far no frog has turned into a prince. Also, I will be on the other side of the globe by then sooo….

6. "You should study literature or art. That way you don't have stress and can focus on being a wife and mom"

Um, I am actually doing a 12 year career in medicine so I think I passed the deadline. *gasp from the audience* BTW, my friends in literature and art majors are pulling at their hair with projects so I think stress is unavoidable.

7. "Red lipstick makes you look promiscuous. Men don't like that"


First of all, red is my favorite color. Second of all, it is Chanel’s signature lipstick, so your argument is invalid. Yes, aunt, it is not my business if they don’t like it, I didn’t pay $40 for nothing.

8. “You can't speak your mind at dinner parties, it’s rude”

Well, this conversation wasn’t particularly stimulating so I decided to spice things up.

9. “You have to understand something, it is common that a businessman cheats with the secretary. She understands him more than the wife at home”

It is common that women leave their husbands for Chris Evans because he’d be able to cook shirtless while looking photo shopped. My argument doesn’t make sense? Funny...

10. "Tampons steal your innocence"

Tampons, prevent bloodbaths. Enough said.

11. "Gay people are not a good influence"

Gay people, straight people, bi people, trans people can be bad influences. Also, you should swing by the Castro, you’ll love it.

12. "Don't carry objects, have a guy help"


I do, I actually am very lazy so I like watching my brother struggle with boxes while I sip on my Starbucks. However, I end up doing it because well it’s not him who boxes.

13. “She most likely is a mess living on her own, she’ll get pregnant, get into drugs, and lose herself”

I’ll let you poke the balloon at the gender reveal. I did lose myself once walking down Market Street. You forebode my mess, I can’t walk from my bed to the closet, there’s a pile of clothes surrounding “the chair.” And drugs, well, I have almost overdosed on caffeine.

14. “Smile, you don’t look cute with your face so serious”

I’ll smile once I see my poke bowl.

15. “You cannot go on a date without a chaperone”

Well, I wouldn’t really call it a date. But I’ll have you pay my Uber next time if you come along.

Moral of the story: Breaking the rules can sometimes be the key to achieving your maximum potential. Independence is key to understanding the world through a different lens while maintaining your integrity. Transforming the impossible into reality is achieved through the risk of swimming against the current. The process of becoming your own voice in a world filled with uniform ideologies can lead to a myriad of opinions, many times superfluous ones.

15 rules reigned the environment once, and 15 were sufficient to create independent criteria. Some may refer to it as rebellion, I call it thinking. To all the young minds in the process of becoming: question everything as you pave your own path. It is easy to conform in a world of no’s, but it’s a personal must to become your own voice. Even if you must become an outlier.


Cover Image Credit: Rocio Flores-Villa

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