Showing posts from October, 2019

All Hallow's Eve & High Emotions

At the risk of sounding like a party-pooper, I've never been a real fan of Halloween. I do however, love the foliage, and how the vibrant colors can make the darkest of days seem bright. As a writer and musician, my creativity is at its highest...and so are my emotions. I guess if you look at artists, (writers, painters, musicians, sculptors, etc.,) you'll notice that their best work is done at the highest peak of their emotional state. We feel more. We grieve more. We even sense other people's emotions, as most of us are empaths. We have an intuitive way about others, whether we tap into it or not. If you read about the origins of Halloween, (All Hallows Eve)---it's celebrated on the 31st of October however, tracing back to its roots, this holiday was really celebrated as Samhain, a time where death was celebrated. Samhain was a celebration of the death cycle of Mother Earth and the honoring of the downtime between the end and the start of a new cycle. It's als

Words Have Power, Use Them Wisely

Eleanor Roosevelt once said, "Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people." I've always loved that quote, because it's true on so many levels. To talk about great ideas, making new and exciting plans means you're setting up a positive future. The "average" mind discusses events, past tense---to live in the past is to be depressed, to live in the future can drum up anxiety. Anxiety can be good or bad, depending on how you look at it. There is anxiety that is equivalent to anticipation, and I believe that's what this quote speaks about. But whenever I hear someone talking about somebody else's business, or speaking poorly of them, I always know that in my heart my name will be next on their list of discussion. In Judaism, it clearly speaks about how gossip can kill. They say, "Evil gossip kills three: the one who says it, the one who listens, and the subject of the gossip." Eventually, if all invo

Invisible Illnesses: Break the Stigma

When we see people, get to know people and try to gain some sort of intuitive vibe from them, we usually end up with the totally opposite of the truth. For instance, throughout my life, I have seen quite a few therapists. Almost all of them said to me, "You don't look like someone who suffers from anxiety or depression." And for the record, that's something a therapist should never say. They should know that many people carry around their burdens underneath a smiling face and a strong handshake. Many come from the corporate world, with having people skills that are taught from seminars. Some are just hiding it the best they can through their humor and warm greetings. But underneath it all, they're emotionally dying, begging for someone to just help them get out of that dreadful rut they're in. There are those who suffer with panic disorder, depression, PTSD, social anxiety and many other mental health issues that can be debilitating, especially in a social s

What's Our Purpose In Life?

Your life, your environment, your friends, your loved ones, your work and your entire world can change at the drop of a hat. Everything you know now can be taken away tomorrow. There are no lifetime guarantees on anything. Relationships and marriages fall apart, families break away from one another, people get sick---some recover while others succumb to their disease. One day you're wealthy, and the next minute, you can be standing on a long line at a food pantry hoping to find a few cans of soup for your children. It's crazy to think about all the possibilities that can happen to us. We aren't immune to anything. There've been wealthy stockbrokers -- billionaires, who have hit rock bottom. Some sought solace in a bottle while others simply fell into a deep depression over losing their spouse and family. Goals Years ago, I worked in the corporate world, trying to climb the ladder of success. I wanted nice things for myself, but most of all, I wanted to live a fu

World Mental Health Day

It doesn't matter if you hide it well, or never tell a soul about your unraveled feelings you keep bottled up, the fact is, we all suffer with mental health one way or another. You may be independent and highly functioning, or you can be debilitated with agoraphobia due to your panic attacks. Bereavement also goes down as part of mental health issues and so does behavioral issues, like uncontrolled anger. We all share this common human element that we feel ashamed to share publicly. Fear of abandonment, depression, manic depression (bipolar disorder) and even hormonal imbalances, which can contribute to mental health issues. Chronic pain can put you in quite a depression as well. Pain is the most common factor for debilitating depression. Whether it is circumstantial, inherited or developed over time, we can all admit that we had or still have suffered from a mental health situation. And there's nothing to be ashamed of. Myths and Phony Boloney Statements Made "The

Get Behind Me Satan! I'm Jumping Out of My Comfort Zone!

The waves of grief are strange and unpredictable. It's like, one day you're doing great and feeling like you're somewhat healed, and then one night, you wake up in a puddle of tears because you dreamt of your lost loved one. That's what happened to me this morning. I was doing okay. I thought I was "fine." It was 2am when I gasped for air, trying to hold onto mom, half sleeping and half awake. Was it a visit? Was it just a dream? Was it my subconscious telling me I need to purge more in order to heal? I don't know. All I know is, I woke up incredibly sad. My heart was racing a mile a minute. I took a deep breath and praised God. "Get behind me Satan---not today, not today." Even though it was somewhat of a late start to the day, I got up, showered up and showed up. The devil wants us to live small lives---lives full of fear and dread. The power behind pushing through that heaviness, the dread that nearly consumes you is not easy. But if you'

Complicated Grief: Is It Ever Truly Uncomplicated?

Having struggled with mental health most of my life, and then running into circumstantial challenges and major losses have all been a real eye opener. You get to see what your limitations are and how your body, mentally and physically responds to it all. And sometimes, you'll feel God's subtle hedge of protection, guarding you from things that you just cannot do alone. It's that type of inner strength you never knew you had. It's actually the inner strength you never had, because it was God's strength while in the midst of our weakest moments. That strength didn't belong to us. “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” --2 Corinthians 12:7-10. People Will Try & Comfort You Any time someone would say, "Well, it does get easier with time," while referring to the loss of my mom, I just nod my head (without arguing) and mentally say, "But it doesn't."  Another one of my favorites: "Take

Words Are More Powerful Than You Think

Every single day is a gift. Some of us realize it, while others just can't see past the fog. Depending on what you're going through, that "gift" can feel more like a burden, so we start resenting it---leaving a sense of ungratefulness. We may not even notice that we woke up with air in our lungs, a roof over our heads, a bed to sleep in, and food in the fridge. We forget to even thank God for waking up at all. We trudge through the day in this mundane shuffle of everyday routines, and think to ourselves, "What is it all for?" Sometimes, if I'm in a real bad funk, I'll ask, "What's my purpose? Why am I even here?" There are some days when I can't even move due to my fibromyalgia. I had really bad flare ups these past two days or so. It usually happens when cold air meets the warm air, or if a weather system like rain is moving in. In other words---I'm old. Even though I sometimes get depressed about it, because I know it's

Undeserved Forgiveness: Does It Exist?

Many people are diagnosed with PTSD. But some people have also been misdiagnosed with it. I know I was to an extent. When I learned what PTSD actually was by a series of questions my therapist asked, we both realized that I wasn't the one with PTSD--my parents were. One of the questions were, "Do you constantly have flashbacks of the day when your parents were arrested in your home when you were sixteen years old?" No. I mean, I think about it from time to time, but what I think about most is how all of us became closer and supported one another during the process. We stuck together through it all like a true family. There was forgiveness and healing after everything was said and done. If you click here , you can read up on the details of that dreaded day. In short, my parents home was raided by the FBI for a number of reasons, which is listed in that article .  Was I upset? Of course. But this was my parents' trauma---not mine. I mean, thinking that you'r