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Balancing Advocacy and Personal Struggles: A Journey of Struggle & Resilience

Dreamers, I know reading blogs is a thing of the past but please read this.

Today, I want to open up about something deeply personal yet profoundly important—the journey of being a mental health advocate while wrestling with my own mental health challenges.

Running a mental health brand comes with immense responsibility, especially when dealing with depression, ADHD, and various other struggles that can make every day feel like an uphill battle.

The Weight of Responsibility

As someone who has always been passionate about mental health, it's both a privilege and a burden to lead a brand dedicated to helping others. There's a unique pressure that comes with this role, a constant drive to be the beacon of hope and support for our clients. But let's be real—being an advocate doesn't mean I'm immune to the very issues I'm trying to address. In fact, it often amplifies the struggle. The expectation to have it all together, to be the source of strength, can sometimes feel overwhelming.

Living with depression and ADHD means that my days are often unpredictable. Some days, the fog of depression makes it hard to get out of bed, while the constant hum of ADHD makes focusing a herculean task. Yet, these experiences also fuel my passion. They remind me why DREAM exists—to provide support, understanding, and tools to navigate these challenges. It’s a constant reminder that mental health is a journey, not a destination, and it’s okay to seek help and lean on others. I have always tried to let that message bleed through our clothing but sometimes it falls flat. 

Navigating Economic Challenges

Switching gears a bit, let's talk about the economy. It's no secret that we’re living in tough times. The financial landscape is challenging for most people, and it's no different for us here at DREAM. The cost of running a clothing line with the increase of shipping costs, materials, and advertising coupled with the economic downturn, has been incredibly taxing. Adapting to these changes has been extremely difficult. 

We've had to make some hard decisions—tightening budgets, seeking out alternative funding sources, and finding innovative ways to keep providing top-notch services without compromising quality. It’s been a rollercoaster, to say the least. The economic strain affects not just the business side of things but also the emotional well-being of everyone involved. It's hard to maintain enthusiasm and passion when financial stress is a constant companion.

The Debt Struggle

One of the most significant challenges has been managing the debt incurred to keep DREAM operational. There were times when it felt like the debt would swallow us whole. The sleepless nights, the anxiety, the fear of not being able to continue our mission—it was all-consuming. Finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel with our debt is a relief, but it hasn’t been the end of our struggles. The current economy means that while we're making progress, we’re still fighting an uphill battle. 

 

Losing Passion

With all these challenges, I must confess—there were moments when I lost my passion. The constant fight to keep things afloat, the personal mental health battles, and the relentless stress took a toll. I felt like I wasn't myself anymore. The joy, the drive, the spark that once fueled DREAM seemed to dim under the weight of it all. It’s a tough place to be, especially when your work revolves around bringing hope and healing to others. But it’s also a testament to the reality of mental health—that it's okay to struggle, to feel lost, and to seek renewal. You may see the Instagram and Facebook posts of my struggle and I hope that doesn't push you away but rather it helps you feel the human side of DREAM. 

Finding New Ways to Give Back

Amidst all these challenges, one thing has kept me going—the desire to help others. We’ve started finding new ways to connect with our community and give back, even when resources are tight. One of the initiatives I’m most proud of is our free gifts and giveaways. It's a small gesture, but it brings joy to those who receive them and helps keep DREAM in people's hearts and minds.

We started this because, honestly, our donation stream dried up. The economic crunch hit everyone hard, and contributions that once helped sustain our free services dwindled. But instead of giving up, we adapted. For every item ordered, we donate one. It's not a sustainable model in the long term, but for now, it’s our way of saying, "We’re still here, and we care."

These giveaways are more than just freebies—they're a symbol of hope and resilience. They're a reminder that even in tough times, kindness and support can make a difference. It’s about creating moments of joy, no matter how small, and keeping the spirit of DREAM alive.

Moving Forward with Hope

As I navigate these challenges, I’m constantly reminded of why I started this journey. The responsibility of being a mental health advocate, the economic struggles, the debt, and the loss of passion—they’re all part of the story. But so is resilience, creativity, and the unwavering desire to help others.

To everyone out there struggling, know that you're not alone. Whether you're facing financial stress, mental health challenges, or a loss of passion, remember that it's okay to seek help, to lean on your community, and to find new ways to keep moving forward. At DREAM, we’re here for you, and we’re committed to continuing this journey together, no matter how tough the road gets.

Stay strong, stay hopeful, and keep dreaming.

With love,

Sammy Dreamin'

A lot of you have been asking how can you support us for all we've done the last 5 years. The answer is to donate directly to us. We are in the very long process of turning DREAM into a 501(c)(3) nonprofit which will help us do a lot more for mental health. We have to take in donations first to qualify so any bit will do. 

Donate here. 

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