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Remembering Coco Lee: How Losing a Chinese American Icon Can Help Us To Step Back

by Mashaal Hussain

Coco Lee, the beloved Chinese American singer who touched our hearts with her powerful voice and inspiring performances, has tragically passed away at the age of 48. 

Known for her iconic vocals for the Mulan theme song and for being the first Chinese American to grace the Oscars stage, Coco Lee sadly past at the beginning if the month (July 5th) in Hong Kong.

Trigger Warning: Self Harm, Depression

Her death has been confirmed as a result of depression-related suicide by her sisters Carol and Nancy Lee via the social media platform Weibo.

After a prolonged battle with depression, Coco's condition took a turn for the worse, leading to her attempted suicide at home on July 2. 

Despite the dedicated efforts of the hospital team to rescue and treat her, Coco Lee sadly passed away during her 30th year in the music industry. 

For the past three decades, Coco has graced us with her exceptional talent, bringing us joy and surprise through her captivating songs and enchanting dance moves. She paved the way for Chinese singers to break into the global music arena, with many forever be grateful for her contributions.

Coco Lee was also appointed as the first Chinese ambassador for Chanel, solidifying her influence in the fashion industry.

In recent years, Coco remained actively involved in mainland China, serving as a judge on various singing competitions and reality shows, including 'Chinese Idol' and 'Come Sing With Me.' Her passion and dedication continued to inspire countless aspiring artists.

Alongside celebrating Coco Lee's remarkable life, it is crucial to address the profound impact of mental health challenges and provide support to those who may be struggling. 

If you or someone you know is battling depression or any other mental health issue, remember that help is available. 

Dealing with depression can be a challenging journey, but there are steps you can take to nurture your mental well-being and find hope amidst the darkness. Here are a few practical tips to help you cope with depression:

Cliché as it is, prioritise self-care. No, we don’t mean a face mask, cup of tea, and a bath. 

Take care of your physical and emotional needs. Engage in activities that bring you joy, such as hobbies, exercise, or spending time in nature. Make sure to get enough sleep, eat nourishing meals, and practice relaxation techniques like deep breathing or meditation. 

And, more importantly, don’t be harsh on yourself. Care for yourself as you would someone else and acknowledge when you need to take time away. Listen to yourself.

Creating structure in your day can help provide a sense of stability and purpose too. Setting small, achievable goals takes away the pressure. Celebrate even the smallest victories.

Seeking therapy and counselling can be incredibly effective in providing support and guidance. Wether it’s therapy or counselling, a mental health professional can provide valuable guidance, teach coping mechanisms, and explore treatment options tailored to your needs.

Support groups also offer an invaluable sense of solidarity by connecting individuals facing similar hardships. Additionally, hotlines and helplines provide immediate assistance to those in distress.

While none of this will magically cure you, all we want is for you to take time to trust and love yourself.

Let's remember Coco Lee not only as an extraordinary talent but also as a reminder of the importance of mental health awareness and the need to support one another during challenging times. 

Edited by Emily Duff


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