For today’s post I would like to introduce to you a story that led to the establishment of a motivational clothing line . That clothing company is called Connect and Spread Love and its based on one man’s personal battles with depression. Connect and Spread Love was founded by Sammy Christopher Sucu and in today’s interview we’ll talk about his journey in life.
Andreea : Sammy let’s talk about the time when you faced an enormous challenge in your life – depression – that took you some time to get through and how in the end your ingenuity helped you overcoming it and you are now stronger than ever.
“Battling depression was the hardest thing I have ever done, but I am proud to say that I am a bigger man today than I ever was before.
It was in 2010 when I first realized that I was not happy. I was a Psychology major at a local university and I was getting close to graduating. I wanted to enter the world of clinical psychology and become a therapist. However, my parents told me “it is not for you, you should become a lawyer”. I fought with my parents and my family but eventually I lost the battle and started to prepare for my Law School Assessment Tests.
I started to believe that law school was what I wanted. I kept fighting to get into a decent school and I eventually did. I was scared, but confident I would succeed. I proposed to my girlfriend of 6 years and was prepared to go through law school with her by my side.
During the first two weeks of class, reality hit me. The content I was reading was not only boring and bland, but I did not agree with some of them as well. I kept thinking about how I wanted to try to make a difference in this world and touch the masses with my writing or research.
There I was, trapped in law school without the ability to do either of those things. I tried my best to do well in my classes. For the most part, I did okay, but it was not enough to keep a smile on my face. The rest of my classmates were excited about the work and I was not. One of my professors told me that I looked like I hated my life. She was right. I hated myself, I hated my parents, my family, my friends, my fiancé, my everything. I hated them because I MADE THE WRONG DECISION and I POINTED FINGERS AT THEM.
Finally, I decided to drop out of law school, move back home and face everyone. A lot of my loved ones were disappointed in me. Some were happy that I dropped out because they knew it was not what I wanted. Although I never heard it, I felt that everyone looked at me as some sort of quitter or loser. That was exactly how I felt.
I had no job, no school, no happiness, and no confidence. My parents were not around because they were outside of the country for a long period of time. My father has been living outside of the country since I was 12 years old. It has always been tough for me to deal with that fact but it taught me a lot of things that I would have never known if he had been here. Regardless of my father not physically being here, he was always by my side to support me, but the physical distance took a toll and added to melancholy emotions.
Eventually, I applied to go back to school to get my Masters in Business Administration. I felt that I had all the tools to be a successful businessman but needed the proper education. Then I decided on finding a job and I was looking for months. It seemed like every job I applied to I was turned away from. No calls, no e-mails, no responses, not even an interview. I was unemployed for 10 months until I finally got an interview with a company that I truly wanted to work for. I was preparing for the interview and slowly getting out of my funk. I felt that I beat the battle of depression…but I was wrong.
As I drove home from my sister’s house I noticed that there were no cars in front of my house. I had this gut feeling..a bad feeling too. I drove to my grandma’s house and I found out that my gut feeling was right. My grandfather fell asleep and never woke up. All I could remember was how cold my body felt while I was screaming “Why will I never be happy”.
I have never been to a funeral of a close family member. My other two grandparents passed on but they did so out of the country where I was not able to attend. Although it did not help the case of my depression, I was apart of the whole funeral. I was a Paul bearer to my grandfather and I let his casket down. I was happy for him because he battled dementia and Alzheimer’s for so many years but I was sad at the same time because during my fight with depression I lost someone who I loved. I finally went to the job interview for the company I dreamt of working with. I had a great interview with the interviewee and I felt like the job was mine….and I was wrong, again.
I was turned away from the job, I lost my grandfather, and I felt hopeless. However, if it weren’t for my grandfathers death and being turned away from my dream job I would have never been inspired to start my own motivational clothing line and beat depression for the last time.
I finally experienced happiness.
I felt like I became a man because I had the idea to start something that would use my business savvy side and help change the world.
I am proud to say that I created my business, Connect and Spread Love, based on my personal battles with depression. My company is a motivational clothing company that will donate a portion of our proceeds to foundations who research clinical depression and Suicide Prevention. Not many people take depression seriously. Most people don’t realize the severity of depression and how many things can cause it. Hopefully with the support of everyone and my support to these foundations we can help change that notion with the masses and create awareness around depression and suicide.
Andreea: Sammy I’m really glad that you overcome that time of your life . Let’s talk a little about Connect and Spread Love.
My brand was not only inspired by my battles with depression, but it was also inspired by my love for graphic t-shirt designs. I love graphic t-shirts because it is a great way to show people a little bit about yourself without communicated. That is why I wanted to create a motivational clothing line with graphics that will make people think, understand, and inspired. Currently, our company only has a a couple designs to order. However, we have about seven designs ready to be ordered! We will also release crew neck sweaters, long sleeve shirts, beanies, hats, and other accessories in the near future.
This is the story of a man who knew how to stand up and accomplish all this. I hope you enjoyed and learn something from it.
I’ll like to announce that Spread and Love is having their first event/contest! Please read the contest rules and guidelines before entering the contest here!