Holly Lawson "Not All Heroes Wear Capes" (Column #1)

I have rewritten this piece at least seven times. Every time I got to a certain point I would delete the copy and start again. I was hoping to write the perfect introduction to my forthcoming bi-weekly column for URMND, to explain why I was doing it and the experiences I have lived through, which afforded me a perspective not often found in print.

The dilemma was, where should I start?

Do I introduce myself as a trainer, and explain how my training style is different from a lot of other trainers? Such a huge part of what I do with clients is based around figuring out how to get them to talk to me and allowing them to unload their fears, angst and worry. I am all about building their fitness training in a way that allows them to grow.

Do I let everyone know that I am a professional boxer? That I have spent many years of my life chasing a dream in a sport that was so largely dependent upon a strong psyche, that the athletes who compete in it are often riddled with psychological damage from finding ways to cope? Should I talk about how some boxers find ways to accommodate the stress of having to face a literal life or death situation daily? Do I discuss how living in a sport that is bound by weight classes, inevitably gave me enough issues with food, that I must admit it certainly developed into an eating disorder?

Would it be best to start at the very beginning of my experiences with depression? To explain the household I was raised in, the turmoil and abuse that existed for years? Is it easier to start at childhood, to give a glimpse of how I had found ways to cope with depression when I was too young to even understand what that meant, let alone put it into words?

Do I touch on the mental toll that past trauma has had on me?

I could start the column talking about domestic abuse, touching on my own experience in a relationship so violent and emotionally abusive, that I was certain my then boyfriend was going to kill me. Would it be better to acknowledge the years of therapy and work it has taken to get to a point in my life where having a healthy relationship is possible? Do I talk about the after effects of that relationship, how I found a way to rebuild my life not only physically, but also emotionally?

Since the site is dedicated to mental health, would it be easier to simply talk about my cousin and how he was diagnosed and subsequently institutionalized from the mental health issues, that eventually contributed to his passing? Do I just hint at how that affected me, how it still resonates through my life daily?

Or was I overthinking everything, and simply should’ve stated that I am so excited to be starting this new project with URMND? Perhaps I could’ve skipped all of that and just said that I plan to write from my own personal experiences, to discuss the mental health issues which I see affecting so many people around me, and that I’m hoping the column is going to allow some more honest conversations about mental health and how we need to prioritize it more……..

I’m beyond excited to be starting this new journey with you guys and welcome to the team!


Follow Holly on Instagram (@lilbearlawson) and Twitter (@lilbearlawson)

Photo credit: @slaucienga

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