Quick read on Mindfulness.

Quick read on Mindfulness.

I’ve been on the DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy) form of treatment for quite sometime now.  Even though that it was primarily used to treat those with Borderline Personality Disorder, it has helped me very well in taking my coping skills to the next level.  

This article from TWLOHA slightly touches of the foundation of DBT, which is Mindfulness.  Think about taking a subject, and being able to just accept it.  You don’t have any reaction to it, thoughts, opinions, or anything of the like.  This something that is easy in saying.  This is hard to master, as I’m finding out.

I hope you enjoy the read!  I know that I said that I would have a big update post ready, but I got hired by my psychiatrist’s office!  Therefore, my time is stretched thin.  However, I will find some time to write about what has happened since that last huge post that I made!

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Empathy: The Great Equalizer.

Empathy: The Great Equalizer.

This is a great read about how empathy can affect a lot of lives, including our own.  One of the things that is not in abundance in this world are people that can look at a given situation through another person’s point of view and take that into their lives to make their life better.

One of the things that I pride myself on and has been a big help in my personal recovery, is being as mindful, and empathetic to others’ situations.  Because of this, I feel like that perhaps there I have changed a handful of lives, and ultimately, I changed my own life because of this.  So, if you are suffering from any mental illness, I invite you to take a few minutes and read this.

There are also links to a test that I guess measure how empathetic you are as well as how sympathetic you are.  I invite you to take these and see where you stand!  

Expect a new entry with how I’ve been doing in the next week or so!

A cool article to help keep people like myself striving in the journey.

A cool article to help keep people like myself striving in the journey.

This article here is something that I read while I was really struggling earlier this week. 

It’s just striving for the importance of keeping yourself doing the right things with bipolar disorder.  The descriptions he portrays are good comparisons with everyone with bipolar disorder, but to be honest, this can be also be adopted with anyone with a mental illness.

As for me, I’m doing a lot better.  I think the shock from the early part of the week was that I am starting to feel alive again, and in that, I felt a lot of emotions that I didn’t really have before now.  This led me into a sort of shocked and frightened state of mind, because I did not know how to process the new emotions that I was feeling at the time.

Striving to be perfect in everything, I missed a lot of things.  Thanks to the support of a lot of people, I was able to recover.  Granted, I still stand by what I said in my last entry.  I am very blinded still.  Learning how to not look for perfection at every corner is actually taking a lot out of me.  However, I think that, if I keep at it, I can get better at it, and I can keep growing as a person.

I think though, I’ve been growing.  Now, I can enjoy the journey while growing all at the same time.

Thoughts on Valentine’s Day, a week before it.

Thoughts on Valentine’s Day, a week before it.

The article above is from a site I love reading things from, The Good Men Project.  In it, the author talks candidly about her ex-husband.  He suffers from depression.  She give a great comparison by using a childhood crush, the Incredible Hulk, as a way to describe her relationship with her ex-husband.  Ultimately, it was them seeing things differently.  He always saw chaos and destruction like the Hulk did.  She always saw the genius doctor, Bruce Banner.

I used to have this view.  For a long time, I have always seen myself as some kind of monster.  Someone who is incapable of love or being loved.  After all, the tolls of my personal struggles have caused immense damage to people who would have been the best things for me today.  However, I can’t take them back, nor do I want to.  Those days I was like the subject of this article.  Honestly, if you think about it, there is always a chance that I can go back to be the viewpoint of the ex-husband, though that is something I do not desire.

Part of the struggles I had last month was I knew I can do more in every aspect in my life.  With that, I know that there are perhaps people that I know who see or interact to on a daily basis that I could open my heart to.  There even could be someone in those very people that I could maybe perhaps fall for.  The only way to that is to be open, which is the opposite of my Cancerian nature. 

I’m going to my first appointment with my new therapist on Tuesday.  Perhaps she can help me with the main issues that will allow me to be more open.  Anyway, I think that I am going to step out of my comfort zone, and do something really cool for some gals I know on Valentine’s day.  Sometimes, little surprises can do a world of good in a life.  I’m literally not going to be doing this to not try and get into dating anyone, as I’m not ready yet mentally for something that big.  The thing I want to try and capture, is that for some this can probably be a lonely holiday, and I think just showing a little gratitude will go a long way for some people.

A commentary about the people close to you, and defining roles in your recovery plan.

A commentary about the people close to you, and defining roles in your recovery plan.

The link above sends you to an article I read a few weeks ago.  In the article, the writer goes in depth about how a bout with depression lead to him losing somenoe very dear to him.  The thing about it was that instead of getting the necessary help that he needed to get, he actually used the relationship he was in as the sole outlet that would heal him.  Ultimately, both of them pretty much broke, and it lead to a shattered relationship.

I have had this happen to me on multiple occasions.  The one that hurts the most happened to me about 3 years ago.  Now, there were no relationships involved or anything, nor did I like anyone in a romantic sort of sense.  However, I did have some pretty close friends.  One day, I cycled into a 3 week depression, and the culmination of it was that I almost had another suicide attempt.  Well, my best friend at the time caught wind of that, and she didn’t take it that well.  Seems that the next year and a half took a toll on her, and ultimately, we ended up leading diminished roles in each other’s lives.

Now that I’m better, I think about it, and I wish that I had her friendship back, now that I am doing the right things in my recovery.  However, as someone who is a mental health patient, I wonder how hard it is to really reach out.  I can understand the apprehensions someone could have in reaching out to anyone in their past.  After all, you wonder if they can forgive the damage that has been done, and a legitimate question has to be asked in this case too in the sense that is there future damage awaiting them if they choose to associate with that person dealing with their mental health issuses.

I would be lying if i said that I did no damage, or I am any more capable of doing serious damage to others because of my illness.  I’m still repairing the damage I’ve already done from 16 years of being untreated mostly.  I guess the big thing that this article did for me, was to remind me that I am sick, and I do have to take care of that sickness, just like if I had the flu, or cancer.  It’s so easy to skew a person’s support for what we need while trying to recover individually, but I guess this reinforces that I need to take responsibility for me, not just for myself (I am the most important thing to me, but just saying), but for anyone who I am involved with from here on.  It should not be their job to be to be the sole catalyst of our salvation.  It is important that they do walk with us, yes, but we have to be more resposible for managing whatever mental illness we struggle with.

I do get it though.  With me, the two things that get me even to this day are being frightened and being confused.  Whenever I’m frightened about something, I instantly get triggered and cycle to depression.  Alternatively, when I get confused, I instantly cycle into mania.  In both of these cases in the past, I would look for someone to calm me down.  Being that I had bad issues with males in my past, I would turn to females in my life to calm me.  When I saw that they could not calm me, I would get frustrated even more, leading to more morbid thoughts.  Back then, I look for that calming down from others as my therapy, and in hindsight, that is a wrong an unfair thing to expect out of anyone.

It’s my job, to manage my feelings, and get the proper help to manage how I feel concisely.  Now, I just need people to walk with me.  That is more important than them being my salvation.  Eventually, I’ll get it down to where I can be my own salvation, in a sense, but, it is stil important to have people walk with you through your journey, you know?

The next man up.

The next man up.

Have you ever heard of a novel that got turned into a movie called “It’s Kind Of A Funny Story”?

Well the link above was the author of that novel.  His name is Ned Vizzini, and as of Thursday, he is now passed away via suicide.

He was 32 years old, and suffered with depression throughout his life.  He left a loving family behind, including a wife and son.  He was also an advocate who would speak a lot about mental health.  He would wittingly write about his depression.  Now, I personally did not know about this man until this morning while checking my Associated Press app on my phone.  Now, I can say that I have watched the movie version of his novel, but I have not read the actual novel itself.  Perhaps I will find a copy and read it soon.  However, here are some quotes from him.   See if some of these resonate well within you.

“I didn’t want to wake up. I was having a much better time asleep. And that’s really sad. It was almost like a reverse nightmare, like when you wake up from a nightmare you’re so relieved. I woke up into a nightmare.” 
―    Ned Vizzini,    It’s Kind of a Funny Story

“People are screwed up in this world. I’d rather be with someone screwed up and open about it than somebody perfect and ready to explode.” 
―    Ned Vizzini,    It’s Kind of a Funny Story

“Its so hard to talk when you want to kill yourself. That’s above and beyond everything else, and it’s not a mental complaint-it’s a physical thing, like it’s physically hard to open your mouth and make the words come out. They don’t come out smooth and in conjunction with your brain the way normal people’s words do; they come out in chunks as if from a crushed-ice dispenser; you stumble on them as they gather behind your lower lip. So you just keep quiet.” 
―    Ned Vizzini,    It’s Kind of a Funny Story

“How can you live without stars? What keeps you from thinking about yourself all the time?” 
―    Ned Vizzini,    The Other Normals

“There’s so much more for me to be doing. I should be a success and I’m not and other people – younger people – are. Younger people than me are on TV and getting paid and winning scholarships and getting their lives in order. I’m still a nobody. When am I going to not be a nobody?” 
―    Ned Vizzini,    It’s Kind of a Funny Story

Personally, these were a few that just stood out to me.  I’m sure that there are some that will stand out to you as well.

If you have been keeping track of the days, you would know that this day is the last day of the Lines Project.  Something that I posted about last Sunday in my blog.  I am dedicating all my lines today to the family of Mr. Vizzini.  There is this thing in sports(which I am an avid sports fan) that they always say when the stars get injured, namely in football.  That saying is “Next Man Up”.  This means when someone goes down, the sub is expected to fill in and things should run the same.  Think about it with this story.  Yes this is the loss of an advocate to the mental health community, as well as a loss to those closest to him even more so.  This could be a way for us to get ther word out there to those ailing to get the proper treatment, so that they will not have to think that suicide is an answer.

I know I can only do so much by writing in this blog, and tayloring it to really be beneficial to anyone who is ailing from mental illnesses like I am.  I also know that my recovery is also important.  I am generally a young fellow at 29 years old, but even now at that age, I do understand what it means to feel like you’ve destroyed everything and be trapped in a vicious prision in your own mind.  Maybe that gives me an insight into promoting more mental illness awareness all over everywhere when I can.  I do think that eventually my one voice will change something.  Maybe some of you reading this are at an advanced level of your recovery, or know more than I do about mental illness.  Let’s take this man’s death as not one where there is sorrow and mourning of a great and budding young author.  Let’s take it and get to a point where we can save a life, and carry his soul on our backs as we try and get people like me, like others who suffer from any mental illness back to a healthy state.

It is my belief that the individuals who are suffereing right now, maybe some of those who could change this land.  Let’s step up, K?!

RIP Mr. Vizzini.

A solid article about what stigma can do in terms of the mental health community.

A solid article about what stigma can do in terms of the mental health community.

Great read here.  I’m going to do my best to keep people aware of how many people suffer from mental illness around the world from here on out.

It’s really tough for a lot of us to really reach out to folks who suffer from these altering illnesses and for those who have to watch loved ones suffer.  I think it is time we get educated on this and let’s bring a whole new crop of people a new found hope that they wouldn’t find otherwise.