Showing posts from August, 2016

Empowering Inspiration

Change your life.  God's kin-dom is here! (The Message Bible, 15) I've been thinking about inspiration lately and when it is empowering and when it becomes harmful.  This is what I posted in response to the article,  Inspiration Porn: What It Is and Why It Hurts : I have much conflict with this.  I feel like it applies if a person is born with a disability.  But if it happens later in life, then choosing to give up is a much more realistic choice. I feel like especially when it comes to severe mental illness, the success I've achieved IS rightly inspirational.  I graduated college and it was one of the hardest things I've ever done and the only thing that made it so hard was my disability-severe mental illness. So yeah, I'm proud of that.  I do a lot of mental health presentations where I put myself as an inspiration to others. On the other hand, sometimes I am used as a commodity.  Like people only see me as inspiration and not as human, like I've got sup

Summer Vacation 2016 - Take My Body Love Pledge

I am now traveling home.  It will take approximately ten hours, so I should have plenty of time.  I am condensing the rest of my vacation into one single post in several parts because I always struggle with timeliness after getting home from a vacation.  This last post is about the most important lesson I learned-to love my body. I. I could not be totally body positive forever. As the fattest woman in our group who is woefully athletically challenged, my self-confidence and self-love started to diminish.  So I took a picture of me in my bathing suit to see if I looked as awful as I felt and to my surprise, I loved the picture!  Here it is: This is not an expensive bathing suit-I got it in the plus size section of Target for twenty-something dollars, but it's a superb suit.  But this is not just about the bathing suit. I took my picture fully expecting to see an image that I would have to berate and instead, I felt nothing but love.  I love my haircut, I love my bathing suit.  I

Slow Kingdom Coming - Book Review

whatever we follow is what we’re transformed by - Slow Kingdom Coming by Kent Annan. Slow Kingdom Coming by Kent Annan  - I hated the first part, which seemed like an advertisement for his friend's church but the book got better.  The book is basically about the fact that there are many ways to superficially, consumerally show support for justice but that with more focus and careful consideration, a person can make a better contribution to bringing God's kingdom to Earth.  I liked his section on confession as part of justice work.  I don't confess enough.  His book had nothing I had not heard of before but I put some of his quotes in my inspirational quote book.  I liked what he said about needing gratitude and joy.  Joy can be a kind of lifeline as we work for justice, which exposes us to suffering and exacts a toll on us.  I have also found them to be instrumental in keeping me going.  His book seemed to be basically spiritual intentional peer support (IPS) to me.

Summer Vacation 2016 - My Queenly Self

We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we would stand-out in the wide open spaces of God's grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise. (The Message Bible, 315) On day three, the sea was very calm, just like me:   The perfect weather for my brother to paddle me around the ocean.  I felt like a queen on the Nile: And really, I am like a queen-I am the queen of my life. I get to choose how I react, think, and feel.  It takes hard work to realize a certain way does not serve me anymore but I am the one who gets to decide when I have had enough and how I am going to change.  I believe that I have the support of my higher power, whom I call by many names. I believe it is my higher power that prepares me and shows me new ways of being that I would not think of on my own.  It is up to me to open my heart to Her whispers.   A being who has far less choice is my brother's dog, Bee.  I've had fun taking pictures of her, as she is the queen of the quest

Summer Vacation 2016 - Recognizing Privilege

Live out your God created identity.  Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you. (The Message Bible, 22) Yesterday, as I looked at my big family getting along and being merry together, I thought to myself, I am so privileged. I am not saying this because I think I am better than others or because I think I think I deserve more because of somehow working harder.  I do not have time for bootstrapping myths.  What I do have time for is to appreciate the good things in my life. I have a big extended family that gets along for the most part. My family has superb cooks who cook in a way that doesn't upset my stomach. We know how to relax. Despite my lack of money, my needs are fully taken care of. I do not feel judged by my family. I feel comfortable around my family. I feel comfortable in my own skin. I am surrounded by beauty. I am safe. I am loved. Now do I  always  feel comfortable with my family or in my own skin? Of course not! H

Summer Vacation 2016-Sacred Sanity

You're blessed when you're content with just who you are-no more, no less.  That's the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can't be bought." (19, The Message Bible)   It is time for for my summer vacation posts!  I didn't do them last year because I was too busy.  Fortunately, this summer vacation is more relaxed, so I should be able to post every day.   We are at Nag's Head, North Carolina, on the outer banks. I wish we were boycotting North Carolina but as my family decided not to, I figure I might as well enjoy the vacation.   Yesterday, as I was climbing the stairs to the house, I thought to myself,    nothing is more sacred than sanity.  It is so refreshing and wonderful to be on vacation and not be exhausted and depressed.  I feel free.  DBT has helped me the way I knew it would and today I am not anxious but very happy. I feel comfortable in my own skin and it is a very luxurious, utterly enjoyable emotion.  Thank