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With her candle line, a Renton woman sheds light on depression and mental health

Divina Casila's Depress Me Not Candles, and her own personal example, offer encouragement to those facing dark times. #k5evening

RENTON, Wash. — For someone in darkness, a candle can bring light and comfort. Divina Casila says she was in an abusive relationship for years and when depression brought on the darkest of thoughts, candles saved her life.

"Every time I light a candle it just reminds me life is beautiful," Casila said.

During the pandemic, Casila started making candles for friends to raise morale. The feedback she received convinced her to start a line of homemade candles. She pays extra close attention to details, adding touches of color.

"I put flowers on them for decoration," she said.

Casila seals every scented candle with a label offering encouragement.

One says "What if I fall? Oh but my darling what if you fly?" Another says "Plant your dreams" and a third says "My story is not over."

"And I put words inside the lid," she said. "Just a tiny reminder for people that life is amazing and it is possible to come back up when you're down."

She calls her line of candles Depress Me Not.

"I want people to know depression is real and that it's out there," she said.

On Instagram, she spreads hope. Offering the kind of healing words she was only hearing from one person in her life: the high school sweetheart who helped her shine again.

"He is truly an amazing person," she said.

Her husband Antonio Casila is proud of his wife. 

"She helps people promote self-love," he said. "She helps remind people of the importance of mental health and how crucial it is to protect that."

At the Renton Night Market, the Depress Me Not candle booth often becomes a place where people talk about their feelings and experiences.

"I love meeting people at the night market," Divina said.

"I've watched as she's built a community of people who experience life and challenges like her," Antonio Casila said. "And they're being each other's support system."

Credit: KING TV
Some of the candles in Divina Casila's Depress Me Not line.

"I still get depressed once in a while," admitted Divina. "But I don't stay there anymore because I have my family that supports me now and I have my candles."

Candles that bring light and comfort to others.

You can find Depress Me Not candles at the Renton Night Market or online.

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