I talk honestly and openly about my experiences with mental illness, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome through the lens of feminism, fat acceptance and process theology. I also do recipe and book reviews. My mission is to spread the message that hope is always real for a better life, despite living in a world that is often very harsh.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

"Attention-Seeking Behavior" Can Lead To Positive Change

The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer's feet, and [S]he will make me walk on my high hills. Do not fear, Zion, let not your hands be weak. The Lord your God is in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; [S]he will rejoice over you with gladness, [S]he will quiet you with His[Her] love. [S]he will rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3:18
Facebook Collected Writings: Responding to a friend who read an article that said talking about illness online is "attention-seeking." Just ugh Articles like those are ableist.  Sometimes illnesses really do need attention.  Problems don't go away if we stop talking about them. In fact, it's the exact opposite.  Those articles just reenforce the status quo. And the status quo is only good if you're a healthy white rich educated straight cisgender Christian male and then it's still an illusion.  :)
When I have no hope for myself, sometimes I can find hope through other people and hearing their stories.  Debbie Corso is a blogger I enjoy and she shares her story that after being diagnosed with Borderline  Personality Disorder, she took DBT and was able to have her diagnosis removed. Knowing that she did that inspired me to give it a try and within two years, I didn't qualify anymore either. I used to think about suicide every day for 20 years but then I finally got tired of hospitals and I really started looking at if I could change my thinking. (That, along with a good therapist, the right med, and support but it all started with me being willing to examine myself.). I don't think about suicide on a daily basis anymore.  What I have noticed is that change always happens - life is change but often times it is a slow slow process instead of the instant gratification that we long for.  Looking for the little ways that my life has begun to change has been really helpful.  

Friday, April 15, 2016

Listen To The Holy One In Your Midst

My heart churns within me; my sympathy is stirred.  I will not execute the fierceness of my anger; I will not destroy Ephraim.  For I am God, and not man, The Holy One in your midst; and I will not come with terror. (Hosea 11:9)
At my job, I talk to a lot of people with different views and I can't always challenge people the way I'd like.  Because we're trauma informed. And sometimes that's really hard.  It forces me to listen though.  Behind prejudice and Trump support, there is fear, some of which is legitimate. When we meet fear with more fear and anger, then things get worse. When we listen, acknowledge, and challenge with compassion, then things get better.
In response to this quote:
Or that you're extra special if you work with them as your job. I used to work with adults with developmental disabilities and one of my pet peeves was being told how wonderful I was for working in that field.  I worked there because I loved it, not because I was some hero. It would be more heroic to do well in a field that I didn't enjoy.
The whole parenting thing is such a sore subject for me.  There was one comment for an article that I realize now was really triggering.  A parent said that "when people who aren't parents say they are exhausted they. Just. Can't."  It made me feel horrible.  Because a part of me really does want children but logically there's no way I could.  I thought to myself when I saw that comment was, "then you don't understand mental illness."  I had to go back down to part time because of my exhaustion level.  That's without kids.  I started having suicidal panic attacks on a regular basis again. I know for a fact if I had kids then I would either be dead or would have to give them up because of my mental and physical illnesses.  I know I shouldn't take what one parent said who has no idea who I am personally but today I wasn't able to let it go.  It brought up all these feelings of inadequacy and just ugh self-hatred of being the way I am.  Being told that someone's exhaustion is worse than yours just because of one factor when nowhere in the awful article did it mention actual panic attacks where one wakes up in the middle of the night and is nearly hospitalized.  Just ugh.  All types of people experience exhaustion and sometimes people who have no kids and have extra time still have ways of being that prevent them from taking the self-care they need.
(I'm mentally and emotionally exhausted! I would have added'physically,' but I can still move my pinky.)

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Chronicles of Hope

Come see me this Saturday at The Strand Theater in Marietta.  There will be an art show at 6pm, performance at 7pm and a Q&A at 8:15p.  It's free, so go to Gmhcn.org to print out your ticket.  Watch a powerful performance of people telling their recovery stories in creative ways.