Conway The Machine miraculously survived being shot in the neck and shoulder in 2012, but his life would change following the incident. The rapper’s injuries resulted in Bell’s palsy, a partial paralysis of the right side of his face. Conway has gone on to have an illustrious career but he recently opened up about just how difficult living with his diagnosis has been.
Conway discussed the state of his mental health following the injury in a recent interview with The Athletic. The rapper said the most difficult part for him was thinking about how his kids and family would see him afterwards:
“I don’t feel like I’m disfigured or none of that, but when you gotta look at yourself in the mirror and you know that you don’t look the same or your kids gotta see you don’t look the same and your momma gotta see you like that, it definitely takes a toll and it’s like a war in your mind. In my mind it was like, ‘Man, I don’t even want people to see me like this.’ The mental part of it was harder than the physical. I had to re-calibrate. I had to strengthen my mind before I could strengthen my body. I lost it for a minute. Mentally I just wasn’t in a good space.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Conway outed the stigma surrounding honest mental heath conversations, particularly in the Black community. “I’m opening up more and knowing that it’s okay if you need to talk to somebody,” he said. “Especially in the hood — in the Black community, period — it’s like this stigma of mental health issues is equal to weakness. Even I struggle with that.”
Ahead of the honest interview, Conway had a highly prolific 2020. The rapper impressively released four projects including two collaborative EPs, his anticipated From King To A God album, and its revamped deluxe version.