Today’s #SameHere🤙Hero: Nivardo Gonzalez.
I use lots of words to describe these hero stories when I share them. This particular one, I can sum up in 2: Respect & Inspiration. Nivardo reached out via IG, & I was beyond impressed by him & his msg.
This is a Marine, who came back from duty, lost a fellow Marine/friend to suicide, felt MH symptoms of his own upon returning to civilian life, was willing to be vulnerable, & got help. The story doesn’t end there.
As you see in the pic here, he joined an organization: Project Welcome Home Troops, helping vets & their families learn breath-based meditations. The work of his organization was featured in a huge documentary that’s aired on PBS, called Almost Sunrise. Nivardo has shown his friends, it’s ok to ask for & get help – even as a marine/veteran. He’s truly the definition of a hero. Please help us welcome him:
“A few yrs after my discharge from the Marines, I had a friend die by suicide. The transition from active duty Infantry Marine Corps to Civilian life is very complex as is, & this drove me into a deep depression.
I went into a dark place of depression, anger & just overall felt mentally broken down. I didn’t know what to do, where to go or who to talk to. I felt as if I was a burden & the PTS symptoms seemed to increase.
The day after my buddy took his life, I knew I had to ask for help. I knew I couldn’t win the battle against Depression/PTS alone. I needed help from a professional source. It was one of the best decisions of my life, but I was afraid of being vulnerable.
One-on-one therapy, group therapy & meditation have been a big part of my healing. Running marathons for a cause, & exercising regularly, as well as diving into personal development such as reading, podcasts, workshops, etc. have all helped me.
Not sure honestly how others will react to my #SameHere🤙 Story, but a lot of my friends from the Marines were empathetic. I think they see me as a symbol of Leadership. Not being afraid to take the first step, & being vulnerable has encouraged some of them to go seek help as well.
Many won’t say it, but I know they look to me for guidance.”