Reading Mr Enoky’s submission to the Xbox Ambassadors Blog earlier last month encouraged me to share my story too. Just like Mr Enoky, I have dealt with anxiety and depression as well. It has been a struggle these past few years but finding the Xbox Ambassadors program again and gaming with other ambassadors has helped a ton.
For four amazing years, I was a medic in the Army. During this time, I was able to figure out my purpose in life, which is to help others. I got to go overseas and see parts of world I have never been to, and overall I was happy with my life. My plan was to do twenty years in the Army and then retire. Unfortunately, sometimes life has other plans for you and decides to intervene. I ended up being medically retired after four years due to an injury and I was devastated. Growing up, I always wanted to be a soldier, so being medically retired hit hard. I felt lost and, well… I ended up falling into depression.
The past few years when I was feeling lost, gaming helped me the most. Gaming gave me a chance to socialize and interact with others in a time when I felt alone. I got to meet some amazing people, and while some have come and gone out of my life, I still cherish them and those memories I have of us bonding over video games. I would not trade those memories for anything in this world.
This past year, I’ll admit that my depression was at its worse. During its peak is when I found the Xbox Ambassadors program again. I remembered hearing about it a long time ago when the Enforcement United program was still around, which I was a member of, and I had joined but I wasn’t active until recently.
I started reading up on the program and watching some Ambassador streams and I was liking what I saw. I started completing missions and being more active and then I found Emericagirl24’s stream, who is also an Xbox Ambassador, who I had previously also watched on Mixer. I loved how inclusive she is and allows viewers to join in her games, no matter who they are!
I remember how friendly her community was and I ended up joining her discord. Playing games with her and her awesome community, as well as other Ambassadors, has helped me a lot. I felt my depression getting better and I was being more social and not isolating myself. Even now, I try to be active in her community and the Ambassador program because of how much they have helped me! I can honestly say I am doing better thanks to them and this program.
I just wanted to write this to let anyone who reads this know that gaming can bring people closer and that even if you are struggling, gaming can help you find a community where you feel like you belong, just like I did. I don’t ever want anyone to feel alone, and if I can do that as an Xbox Ambassador, I will continue to be one. So, if you’re ever feeling isolated, check out some Ambassador’s streams or reach out to me to play some games and combat that isolation! My gamertag is Colormericky if you want to take me up on my offer!
And to all the other Xbox Ambassadors out there, remember that everything you do can change someone’s life for the better so lets all keep trying our best and make gaming fun for everyone!