Samara s Story

Calgary, Alberta Canada

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"Since I can remember I have always had a pair of skates on my feet between figure skating and speed skating. I was always described as the shy skater.

 

Recently, I discovered why I was that 'shy' skater.

 

I am an athlete living with severe depression, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder and anorexia nervosa. It was out of my control. My mental illnesses were slowly killing me without me knowing it.

 

Today, I don't let it stop me. I take medication to help me cope with daily life. I go to therapy to learn more about how to cope and not to take life's stress out on my body.

 

Through all the hard times, the one thing that has always been there for me are my skates. Regardless if it was my figure skating or speed skating- it gave me my escape and my safety net.

 

Skating is the one place where I am able to be me without my mental illnesses defining me. This sport gave me my escape. Without this sport, I don't know where I would be today.

 

I now have a daily reminder that my body is not the enemy- it is what fuels my athletic life and it is my survival lifeline as well."

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