Dwayne Johnson’s Difficult Past Includes Saving his Mother From Oncoming Traffic: ‘We Both Healed’

Dwayne Johnson gives off a positive vibe that uplifts anyone who’s around him. Whether that’s in person, or through his nearly omniscient presence online, Johnson’s energy is often so inspiring he might be the source for all human optimism in the world. But that boundless optimism was hard-earned after experiencing a difficult time with depression. And Johnson revealed that his mother was affected by depression, too.

Dwayne Johnson went through hard times

Dwayne Johnson Smiling
Dwayne Johnson Smiling | Vera Anderson/Getty Images

Related: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson Wanted To Do Something Else Entirely Before Becoming a Wrestler and Actor

Johnson’s origins are regarded as one of those inspiring rags to riches stories. Because of the worldwide empire he’s single-handedly built from the ground up, it can be difficult to believe, and easier to forget, there was a time when Johnson’s family struggled to keep a roof over their heads. At one point, they even eventually found themselves without a home.

“We were living in an efficiency that cost $120 a week,” The “Rampage” star once told The Hollywood Reporter, reminiscing about a now-ancient time when his father was barely making ends meet in the wrestling industry. “We come home, and there’s a padlock on the door and an eviction notice. My mom starts bawling. ‘Where are we going to live? What are we going to do?’”

Nowadays, Johnson credits eviction as being one of his many motivators for his successes. But hindsight is 20/20, and whereas now Johnson’s adversity is fuel to The Rock’s fire, back then the eviction led to one of the most traumatic experiences of Johnson’s life: witnessing his mother wander off into oncoming traffic.

An eviction led to Dwayne Johnson’s mother heading into oncoming traffic

In a resurfaced interview with Daily Express, Johnson opened up about the day he nearly lost his mother to depression.

“She got out of the car on Interstate 65 in Nashville and walked into oncoming traffic,” Johnson revealed. “Big rigs and cars were swerving out of the way. I grabbed her and pulled her back on the gravel shoulder of the road.”

Fortunately, Johnson’s mother doesn’t remember the incident. But Johnson’s strong enough to carry the burden of the memory for both himself and his mother, which he appreciates for teaching him valuable lessons he’ll never forget.

“In that moment one of the greatest lessons I’ve ever learned was how precious life is, and how in an instant, it can all go away. It changed me,” Johnson said on the OWN network.

Dwayne Johnson reminds his fans that ‘you’re not alone

The Rock’s personal story not only exposed another tragic but meaningful layer in Johnson’s early childhood struggles, but it also allowed other fans with similar feelings to come out to express their own bouts with suicide.

“Thanks for posting this. As someone who suffers, it’s always great to be reminded I’m not alone.” wrote one fan on Twitter.

“Starting a conversation can make all the difference. Thanks to being one hell of an example, dude.” Another Twitter user chimed in.

Johnson has used his own experience with mental health to bring awareness and help others. Little did 15-year-old Johnson know at the time, that saving his mother’s life would echo all the way to his adulthood, where this story would continue to inspire and comfort fans living with the same condition.

“We both healed but we’ve always got to do our best to pay attention when other people are in pain,” Johnson said in the same interview with Express. “We have to help them through it and remind them they are not alone.”

With his 2018 revelation, Johnson has done exactly that in more ways than one.

How to get help: In the U.S and Canada, text the Crisis Text Line at 741741 to reach a crisis counselor for support.