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Sammy Taylor: Bathurst Cast Member 2020

Hi there! What’s got two thumbs, type one diabetes

and a mental illness? Me. I do. Nice to meet you. I’m

Sammy and I’m taking part of This Is My Brave

(Bathurst) for a few reasons.

First of all; selfishly, for myself. All my life I have felt

like I never belonged, like I was some sort of alien.

Life felt so painful all the time, it was tiring. Finding

out there was a reason why I felt this way changed a

few things for me and beginning to talk about it

helped too. That’s when This Is My Brave popped

along at kind of a perfect time for me. Not only did I

want to break the stigma and normalise mental illness for others,

I wanted to be comfortable with it in myself. Normalise it for me, To belong. Sometimes I

do still feel like a bit of an alien, but for different reasons, like the fact that I’m

super-hot and talented. Kidding.

I think I used to be in denial about needing help with my brain. I just used to

think that I sucked as a person. That other people with mental illness were

definitely valid but when it came to me, I didn’t have a mental illness. I just

sucked at emotions and sucked at being able to handle them. But that doesn’t

even make sense to me… Does it make sense to you?

Now that I am getting help, I’m getting the tools to help me in times where my

emotions take over. I’m getting help understanding my reactions and why I

find life so hard sometimes. I’ve started to realise I deserve to feel good about

myself. I deserve to let myself be loved and to be happy. Everyone does.

Being a part of this has helped me see what life could be like and hearing the

stories from other cast mates has inspired me greatly.

Secondly, I wanted to take part because the conversation around mental

health is so important. If me standing on stage telling my story can help

someone else out there struggling, then I’m all in. The stigma around mental

illness is dangerous, and talking about it, normalising it, is a great place to

start. I have type one diabetes and I struggle with mental health issues. Why

is one more accepted by society than the other? Why should I be

embarrassed to talk about one and not the other? They both affect me daily,

they’re both serious, and neither of them are caused by any fault of my own.

To anyone reading this who may be struggling right now, I understand. I know

what the darkest of days feel like and I know there are brighter ones ahead…

Even when it’s so dark you can’t see. You are worthy of a good life. You are

worthy of a life and you are enough. You shouldn’t be ashamed at how strong

you are. WE shouldn’t be ashamed of how strong WE are!

Being involved with TIMBA has shown me I am brave and strong, and that I

shouldn’t be afraid to say that. TAKE THAT, WORLD! I can brag all I want!!

It’s shown me that there are people who have felt like I have, there are people

who feel the way I feel. That although it can feel so gosh darn lonely, I am not

alone. Being a part of this has given me a confidence that I never had before,

a confidence to be myself and no longer be ashamed of my emotions. I’m

proud at how much I can feel. I used to curse at how much I felt, at how

painful feelings were. Now, I’m proud that I can feel so much and turn that

into a song, or a poem, or a joke (an appropriate one) or a performance. I’m

proud that I can take that pain and make a difference by taking part in this