Everyday Inspiration; Day 9: Writing & Not Writing

Today’s  assignment is to discuss what I do when I am not writing. This easy for me to write about as the things I do outside of blogging is a form of self care for me.

I tend to be a strong advocate in my community. Not just the mental health community or the Peer community but the LGBTQ+ community. Being able to advocate in the communities I identify with helps be in the long wrong to be able to advocate for other communities that I don’t identify with but an ally.

I also volunteer at the Warm Line in my area. Which is something I have been doing for three and a half years now. Something I also love to do. I love to be able to be of support to those who may not have the support that I have.

Something, I do to help myself are self-help workbooks. I am currently doing two work books. One is one my gender identity and sexual orientation while the other is on mindfulness and meditation.

Reading is another thing I do besides reading. I love to read. My favorite genre’s are science fiction, fantasy and mystery. I also love to read text books. Yes, I know it sounds strange but its something I enjoy.

Another thing I enjoy besides reading is to do art. I love to paint, color and collage. Writing helps me process my emotions and feelings while are helps me express them.

Another way I express my emotions is by playing the flute or harmonica. Where words fail music speaks. I also love listening to music and have a ton of play list on Spotify.

Thank you for reading. Have a great day everyone. Peace Out, World!!!

 

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Table For Two

Craft a story or scene about two people—or other nonhuman characters, if you prefer—from very different backgrounds sharing a meal together. What do they learn about each other that they weren’t expecting?

This is an easy one for me as Junior and I come from two completely different backgrounds. Junior is a well off Mexican American while I am an Irish American who is not all that well off. He is well over six feet tall and I am just barely over five feet tall. Junior is a successful firefighter while I am an unemployed Peer Specialist dealing with their mental health conditions.

Junior and I maybe completely different from each other especially when it comes to how we were raised yet we have a lot in common. We both play musical instruments. He plays the bag pipes, drums and trumpet while I play the flute and teaching myself the harmonica. We both are in the “helping” professions. We both have a sense of humor. Humor that gets us through rough patches as individuals and as a couple.

I think what Junior and I learned about each other is something that we weren’t expecting but not a surprise was our desire to advocate for those who do not have a voice. Especially those who don’t have a voice in the communities we most identify with. Another thing we were both surprised about is the love of sports we have.

Thank you for reading my blog. Peace Out, World!!!

 

Everyday Inspiration; Day 1: Why I Write

Good Afternoon, World!!! I write for a multiple reasons. Reasons, I had planned to write about and reasons that were unexpected.

Let’s start by why I started my blog. I started my blog for two main reasons. The first reason was to help educate people who don’t have lived experience that folks like myself who do have lived experience can live a productive life. It may not be productive in the eyes of a “normal” person but productive from my perspective.

The second reason I started blogging was to give those who struggle with a mental health condition/challenge that there is hope in choosing to live in active recovery whatever that may look like to the individual reading. Yes, I’ve shared by heartbreak and struggles here but I’ve gotten up and wiped myself off and hope that what I share give those who have lived experience some sort of hope.

There were some unexpected reasons I blog. The first happens to be advocacy. I didn’t realize that I could advocate here on my blog. Advocacy is something I love to do and am proud that I am able to do it on my blog. The other unexpected reason I write is that I have found that it helps me with my own recovery. My recovery means the world to me.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate all of you because if it wasn’t for you the reader I would not be writing on this blog. Thanks, again. Peace Out, World!!!

Weekly Check-In

Good Afternoon, World!! I don’t have much to check in about as my depression, anxiety and PTSD have been.

I will however briefly check in about the town hall I attended this past Wednesday. The town hall was focused how who both The Division of Behavioral Health and Recovery DBHR) and The Department of Social and Human Service’s (DSHS) can be better advocate for us who not only seek services as a client of a mental health client but one who works as Peer Specialist who works in the system. It was a highlight because it felt like from my end that things were being heard in a lot of ways.

On a not so good note, my symptoms are starting to increase. Increase to where I’m thinking I might have to take myself to the Emergency Room (E.R) soon. Don’t worry, I am not a danger to harm myself on anyone else at the moment. I will never be a danger to anyone else as I don’t want to cause any harm to someone else. I can make this promise to you and this is if I feel like harming myself I will take myself to E.R. As I stated earlier in this paragraph, I am currently NOT a harm to myself or anyone else.

Thank for reading. I hope that you all have a good rest of your Saturday and weekend. Peace Out!!!

Looking Forward to Tomorrow

Good Evening, World!!! Tomorrow, I am going to be attending a town hall regarding the Office of Consumer Partnerships and advocacy regarding peer support. It’s being put on in city where the state capital is which is about an hour and a half car ride from where I live. The Division of Behavioral Health and Recovery (DBHR) and The Department of Social and Human Service’s (DSHS) want to hear from the peer community. They want to hear what we have to say and how to better advocate for us.

I’m looking forward to it for many reasons. One reason I’m looking forward to it is that I get to spend time with people I consider my “tribe” or part of my community. Another reason I am looking forward to it is being able know what the state is doing to better serve the community I’ve been a part of most of my life. Hell, I’ve been a consumer of the mental health system since I was nine. I’ve been volunteering in the mental health field for the last five year. I also worked in the mental health field for two and a half years and plan on working in the field again. So, I guess what I am saying is that I am looking forward to the town hall because of the many aspects of mental health has had on my life and how I can better advocate for others as well as myself.

I hope to talk more about the town hall tomorrow evening when I get home from it. I can’t make any promise’s as I am not sure how drained I will be afterwards. I want to thank you for reading. Have a good evening. Peace Out!!!

Weekly Check-In

Good Afternoon, World!!! If you been reading my blog on the regular basis you know that I have been struggling with the symptoms of my mental health condition. You may have noticed that I have making an effort to blog on the more regular basis. I’m doing this for a multitude of reasons. One is to keep you, the reader, interested in continuing to read my blog. Two, is more of the selfish part of me blogging and an unexpected bonus I didn’t realize was going to happen when I started is that its helping me with my recovery. I have many other reasons I am making an effort to blog more regularly however I am sure those reasons will bore you.

As you are aware that this past week has been a challenging one for me. Challenging in many ways yet I managed to get through some of them with creativity. Creativity in the ways of art and poetry. The main way I did both my art and poetry this past week was collaging and I really enjoyed it. I think its something I’ll continue to do on the regular basis.

Something that appears to be happening on the regular basis for me especially over the last two weeks and I haven’t even been trying is advocating. I’ve had several people inform me in the past two weeks is that I am really good at advocacy including self-advocacy. I don’t know about being good at advocacy especially when it comes to self-advocacy, I just do and say what I think needs to be done. If that’s advocacy then so be it.

I bring up the self-advocacy up because I was signed up to take a continuing education training for peers. A continuing education course I signed up for several months ago. I was informed yesterday (Friday) that I was waitlisted due to the fact that I’m not employed as a peer currently and priority goes to employed peers. I understand this full well and would have let it go and not advocated for myself if I was informed sooner. See, the continuing education training is this Monday and I made arrangements and rearranged appointments to be able to attend it. So, since I was informed on such short notice I thought it would be best to email the folks putting on the training. Since I advocated for myself and the training ending up in a “slightly bigger room” the folks doing the training said I could attend. I realize they couldn’t do this for everyone on the waitlist and won’t be able to this for me in the future however I am grateful that they made an exception for me. In fact the folks putting on the training informed me on who was doing the training happens to be someone I did a continuing education training with a few years ago. A person I have become friends with. I am looking forward to seeing them on Monday.

Now that we are on the topic of friends, two of my friends decided that I needed a girls night out. Or in this case a girls night in. They decided this because I’ve been isolating myself due to an increase of symptoms in my depression. I’m thrilled that they were persistent in their efforts to get me out of my apartment. We ended up at one of my friends places to watch the Seattle Mariners play against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. I did have a good time with my friends even though they were rooting for the wrong baseball team. Actually, I’m just living in the wrong city but I love this city I’m living in. I just have to deal with getting a hard time on occasion when I root for particular sports teams.

Looks like I’ve pretty much told you how my week has gone. That means I’m at the end of my blog post. I hope to blog again tomorrow however if I don’t, I’ll make sure I do on Monday evening. I want to share with you how the continuing education training goes. I hope that everyone has a good rest of their weekend. Peace Out!!!

 

Weekly Check-In

Good evening, world!!! I realize its been a couple of weeks since I posted a weekly check-in even though I have posted a couple of times since then.

If I’m honest with myself and I mean really honest with myself, I have to admit something that I really don’t want to but have to if I want my recovery to move forward. That is that I am retreating back to some old behavior. Behavior that I am not proud of. My behavior at the appointments I had on Monday was inappropriate no matter what the circumstances were. My behavior in recent weeks and even the last two or three months has not been the best. I can make excuses and have some good ones I could use for my behavior but I’m not going to because it will just allow me to give myself permission to continue the not so good behavior.

I’m sharing this with you because if I continue on the path I am on then I’m giving up on my recovery and all the work that myself and many others put into me doing well, will have been time wasted by everyone involved. I don’t want to give up on my recovery. In fact I am at that point that I need to make a major decision in what direction I’m going to go in. The direction, I want to go in will require me to make some major changes in my life as well as some help from both my treatment team and natural support system.  Help I know I’m going to get.

With the help I know I’m going to get, I hope you can tell that I am choosing to be in recovery. It’s not going to be easy and its going to take a lot of work on my part. Work that I am fighting against at the moment but am going to do. I am an extremely stubborn individual and I’m going to use that stubbornness to help me get myself back to a place where I want to be.

If my intuition is correct I know that my therapist will help me get to where I want to be. She has proven to be an advocate for me. In fact I’m pretty sure my case manager will help me with this process as well. Granted, I may feel like my voice isn’t being heard but I know from experience with both of these individuals have advocated for me regarding my recovery. In fact my case manager knows that one day I won’t need her for the extra support and she was asking what that would look like during our last session. Even though I know that it didn’t end well but it gave me something to think about and when I see her next I will let her know my thoughts on it. I know she will be appreciative that I did give it some thought. I’m thrilled that both of my clinicians appear to be recovery focused.

Speaking of being recovery focused, I need to get going. I need to do my DBT homework. I’ve been quite willful in doing it and need to be willing, so I’m going to work on it or at least look over it.  I really hope that my treatment team will help me with getting back into a good head space. Have a good evening everyone and peace out!!!