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Daily Inspiration: Meet Kay S

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kay S. 

Hi Kay, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
Hi! I am Kay and I will be 16 August 11th, and will be a junior! Growing up, I didn’t have the ideal childhood. I gained 10 years of PTSD throughout it and it always made it hard to fit in with all the other kids. Starting as early as elementary school was the start of kids bullying me. However, I have always wanted and said that I wanted to make the world a better place. In sixth grade, I won a pageant as miss Kentucky junior high and with that, I used my platform to go to schools and raise bullying awareness to elementary kids. I would read books and incorporate fun into some very important lessons. Seeing the kids admire me and what I had to say really encouraged me to continue to raise awarenesses. Throughout middle school, I had a few undiagnosed mental illnesses. It was not as common for kids so young to have them, so we hadn’t exactly went to the doctor for anything. Then, quarantine hit and I had a lot more alone time and realized how bad I really felt when I wasn’t distracted by school and sports. I lost access to seeing my guidance counselor at school, and having a usual social life. I felt super alone and that nobody would understand me so I often kept my feelings to myself. I also went viral on TikTok during this time and began to build a platform on there. Once freshman year hit, my father ended up going to prison. The amount of harassments and bullying I received was outrageous and things continued to go downhill from there. I didn’t feel comfortable showing my face in public anymore, I had panic attacks at every volleyball tournament I went to, I became very angry fast causing me to push people away, and other concerning symptoms arose. I stopped caring about myself care and school, which didn’t help at all when I realized that those were super important. Then, the trial of finding a medicine to help started. The first one I tried made me gain 40 pounds, so that did not help my mental health at all. The second one led me to a suicide attempt in December 2021. After that, I really started to notice how much my mental health was affecting my every move. At the end of January 2022, I made a huge choice to go to Children’s hospital and get the help I needed and deserved. During, I felt unbelievably alone, even though my mom was there 90% of the time. I quickly realized that if I wanted to get any better, I needed to fix my mindset on life, and work for it. I gave in to doing all the cheesy therapy lessons and was shocked by how much they helped. I left the hospital a week later feeling like a better person. Now, I have over 60,000 followers on TikTok, and I’ve used my social media platforms to help me build mental health awareness, there can never be too much. It’s incredible how many people reach out to me and say that my posts have helped them so much. Knowing I can help even one person warms my heart. I now have been getting many emails from colleges, and hope to continue to build on my mission. I have even started working with brands who want in on my mental health mission! 

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
The road has been nothing but bumps. Coming to terms that I had something “wrong” with me or that I had this “illness” always seems personal. I always questioned, “why do I deserve this?” Looking back now, I would not be as strong and understanding without all the challenges. A huge challenge after getting help was when I had my bed mental days, they still freak me out and sometimes I will catch myself thinking that all my progress is gone, and have to remind myself that I’m doing the best I ever have. Finding good coping skills is a very big important thing, too. 

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
My TikTok is what I am most known for. I’ve really tried my hardest to use it in a positive way and help people who struggle like I did. 

Do you have recommendations for books, apps, blogs, etc?
Following many people who also share their stories or post cut mental health posts on Instagram helped me a lot. 

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