Christal ariana Clashing O'Reilly
I’ve lived in five countries across the globe. Followed my passion across oceans. Thrown myself into unfamiliar situations and lived to tell the tale.
Passions I've followed across the oceans:
Engagement with Aquatic Environments
Why: Wherever there is a body of water there exists a fear of the unknown
What I do: Empower persons to find their own adventure by being comfortable in the water and respecting the aquatic environment
Favourite Experience: Teaching under-served primary school children how to swim
Diversity in the Outdoors
Why: There are more black people doing adventurous things than is portrayed in adventure media
What I do: Breaking the stereotypes that black people don't do adventurous and aquatic activities
Favourite Experience: Working as a SUP, Scuba, Kayak and Mountain Bike tour guide in Costa Rica
Breaking Mental Health Barriers
Why: Persons connect with mental health stories because it speaks to the internal struggles much of humanity has to deal with at some point in their life
What I do: Addressing the stigma of mental health by sharing my experiences of PMDD and depression
Favourite Experience: Creating a short documentary on the impact depression has had on me and my family
the ocean healed me...
Since my teens, I've struggled with an ongoing battle with depression.
Yet, it is my connection with the ocean be it through open water swimming, diving, rowing or paddling, that has encouraged me to go after my dreams despite the crippling nature of anxiety, shame and depression that plagued me for much of my life.
One Life To Live
From her participation at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, 2006, Antiguan Olympic swimmer, Christal Clashing, reflects on her history of depression and the impact it has had on her family and friends.
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Copyright 2017-2021. Images by Paul Calver.