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CHloe Kepner

I am overly self conscious.

Everything I say, write, do, etc., makes me anxious. Because what if it wasn't good enough? What if there's someone secretly laughing at me? I think throughout our lives, ALL of us have experiences that hurt our self confidence. I was always a sensitive kid and nothing has changed. I can remember in the 8th grade, I had a girl tell me that my eyes were weirdly shaped and not the same size. For about six years, in every picture I saw of myself, that was all I noticed. Those 'misshapen eyes'. Some of us have dealt with bullies, ridicule, and criticism. Trust me, I know it's hard. But there's something beautiful about opening up about it all...



Mental illness and silence often go hand in hand. Some people are silent about their struggles because of the stigma that surrounds it. Others are silent because they don't want to appear different. Some are silent because they refuse to accept their diagnosis. Personally, when I was first diagnosed with anxiety and depression, I was silent for all of the above reasons and then some...



I had wanted to serve a mission since I was a little girl. That was my life goal, and I was overjoyed when I got my call and my dreams became a reality. The first year was pretty great, I had a blast teaching and loved my companions. Things changed however when I got transferred to be with a companion who was struggling with some personal and mental issues. There were 4 of us in that apartment and what I didn’t know at the time that the next 6 months would affect me for years to come. Its hard to talk about specific things that went on, but overall that period of time was just one of high stress, high emotion, and feeling all alone while trying to be missionaries at the same time...



In my life, I experienced my first panic attack on my 16th birthday in Disney World. Disney freaking World….of all places! I was having a FABULOUS time and my family and I were waiting for dinner at Planet Hollywood, when all of a sudden, this overwhelming sense of terror consumed my body. At the time, I had no idea what was happening. All I knew was that I had to escape, somehow, someway. When it finally passed, I was exhausted, mentally and physically. I hoped to never experience that again.
Flash forward to February 2013 and once again, out of nowhere, I had the absolute worst panic attack of my life. It was a 2 hour ordeal and from that night forward, I was changed. What was once a rare occurrence became a daily battle...