NEW DELHI: Cricketer Robin Uthappa has revealed that it was the darkest time of his life from 2009 to 2011 as he was suffering from depression and had suicidal thoughts constantly.
It was in 2006 that Uthappa made his debut in a match against England and has played 13 T20Is and 46 ODIs.
He said, "When I made my debut in 2006, I wasn't overtly aware of myself. A lot of learning and development has happened since then. Right now, I am extremely aware of myself and really clear on my thoughts and myself. It''s easier for me to catch myself now if I''m slipping somewhere in someplace."
Uthappa was the part of the second session of 'Mind, Body and Soul'. It is a platform brought forward by The Royal Rajasthan foundation in association with McLean Hospital (Harvard Medical School Affiliate) and NS Vahia Foundation.
The sportsman also revealed that the mental illness drove him apart from cricket in some ways, "There were times where I wasn't even thinking about cricket, it was probably the farthest thing in my mind. I was thinking about how I would survive this day and move on to the next, what''s happening to my life and in which direction am I heading."
He further emphasised, "Cricket kept my mind off of these thoughts but it became really difficult on non-match days and during the offseason. On days I would just be sitting there and would think to myself on the count of three, I'm going to run and jump off of the balcony but something kind of just held me back."
However, behind every dark cloud, there is a silver lining indeed, and for Robin, it was venting out in a diary. He revealed, "That is when I started noting this down about myself in a diary and started the process of just understanding myself as a person. I then started to seek outside help to make those changes I wanted to make in my life."
Although Uthappa spent years in suffering in misery, he says he has no regrets because all these prior experiences, no matter how dark have made him who he is today.
He concluded by saying, "For me, all my experiences have moulded me into the person I am today and I have no regrets on my negative experience as they've helped me develop positively. You need to go through the lulls to make you feel ecstatic about the positives. I feel life is about balance and we can't have it one way, a lopsided life is not going to be great, both negative and positive experiences are essential."