Calling Angie Tompkins inspirational is an understatement. If there was a word to exemplify the impact of a story like hers it would describe the true story of an underdog. From losing her basketball scholarship, gaining 300 pounds, and being homeless for 5 years. To getting a scholarship to a Division one college Wichita State and playing Professional basketball over in Greece and Australia. Meet the powerhouse who turned her life around and hasn't looked back since.
Be Inspired with Brandy
How do I feel about mental health? Mental health awareness is important. Having a healthy mindset is something that we all take for granted. A vast majority of people in the world aren’t aware of what’s breaking them down mentally, spiritually, physically and emotionally and it’s a blessing to know when have people out here making people aware about the wellness of the mind. Have I ever dealt with mental health/ depression? Yes ,It started when I was young but things really hit the fan when I attended St Petersburg. Things happened to where I lost my basketball scholarship, then after that little ordeal I was homeless for 5 years. Slept on the street, house to house, couch to couch and on top of that I weighted almost 300lbs (so I had an eating disorder). I wanted to take my life and almost committed suicide cause I felt things weren’t going to get any better. But before I made that mistake I just broke down and pray all night. I was stuck in this situation for a min till God gave me an opportunity to play the sport that I love. But yes everything that I’ve been through carried over to me playing basketball in college when I received a 2nd chance to play. How did I overcome it? I still struggle from time to time with things like depression, anxiety and overthinking. But the way I fight my demons is just being around supportive people, changing my environment, and the people I was associating myself with. If you not positive around me I don’t need it in my life. I believe getting out of my living area in Florida into another state has helped me a lot. Also going to counseling and not having all of my emotions bottled up till I exploded and cried myself into a depressed state of mind helped an abundance. Talking to people is kind of hard for me, cause I don’t like talking about what’s going on with me; reason being I felt people didn’t really cared about what was wrong with me, they just wanted a paycheck. but when I did go it helped a bit. Playing basketball was something that really helped as well, that’s my getaway.
Do you feel mental health should be taken more seriously with student athletes? Yes, mental health should be taken serious every where, but yes it should be taken serious with student athletes. To be honest, a lot of these kids have went through something personally that has affected them in a bad way and may have triggered something in them that causes different types of mental health issues. Now... you have they have the extra burden with making sure things get accomplished with school, and going hard every day in practice and trying to balance out the two gets overwhelming. Or say if a kid gets injured that could lead them into depression, anger, lack of interest or motivation.
Did you reach out for help or did you handle it on you own? I think I handled it on my own for a while, until my coach at Wichita State told me I needed to me and forced me to talk to somebody. Again I really don’t like discussing my issues with anyone, cause I felt nobody cared but I really felt like it worked, even though I was reluctant of going. Bottling up emotions and isolation yourself from the world doesn’t help it makes things worse and then puts your mind in this little frenzy of overthinking the wrong things and you really don’t want to be in that state of mind. I still battle with my demons almost everyday but surrounding myself by positive, successful people has helped, cause I strive to be like them.