Mourning Reality TV
Wellness and Reality TV aren’t usually related topics but what happens when a wellness consultant tests her survival skills to inspire women. For me, I learned a valuable life lesson and had to practice my own mental wellness to mourn the loss of my mission. In 2015, I began the journey to appear on Naked and Afraid. I thought it would be a life-changing, motivating and inspirational living testimony for women that have endured adversity and overcame it. I sought out to survive 21 days without food, water or clothing not to gain notoriety but only to inspire and challenge myself and others. I endured three horrendous days until sleep deprivation and PMS made me tap out. During those three days I proved to myself and I thought the world that I could survive. I made shelter, fire, collected tinder, fished, cooked, repaired tools and throughout kept an optimistic mindset. I left feeling accomplished and knew others would see my story and find their inner strength.
However, when I finally saw my episode I was at a loss for how everything I had done was edited out. I knew going into it that editing is not on your side as it is for entertainment but what about my mission? What about my message? It was watered down, cut out, and not shown in its entirety. I had to mourn the loss of my mission. I didn’t care that the internet fodder belittled me I was more so hurt that my suffering was in vain. I then began to think about my time there. How I saw a macaw soaring, the beautiful sunrise in Brazil, the sound of waterfalls in the distance, the beautiful oasis where we camped and the prayers I said daily. I reflected on how not only did I survive but it was not in vain it was character building and was a life-changing experience. Despite others not seeing everything, I knew what I endured and why. Once I came to grips with the fact that reality tv is merely for entertainment and that my episode was entertaining and inspirational to a degree, I resolved myself, continued my work through my business, and life. I am thankful to Discovery for the opportunity and will bring the lessons I learned in Brazil to others through wellness, hope and believing in yourself. The world might not have seen it but I know someone was inspired just by seeing me tackle such a challenge and that brings me great mental wellness.