Traditions & The Holidays

Hello, World!!! I am not sure how to feel at the moment as I have many emotions that are swarming around. Some emotions I am dealing with are not all the pleasant and really wanting to avoid them while other emotions more pleasant and obviously more willing to not avoid them. This is the time of year where things don’t go so well for me in regards to my mental health challenges. Specifically, my depression and PTSD. Thankfully, I have plenty of ways to take care of myself this time of year.

One of the things that was suggested to me early on in my recovery during the holidays was to start my own traditions that I can do with or without people. The only thing I could think of at the time was the two comic books that I had; Christmas with the Superhero’s, Volumes One and Two. So, every year, starting the day after Thanksgiving, I read those two comic books several times during the holiday season. On Christmas Day I read both twice.

Another tradition I started about eight or so years ago was to do a holiday themed jigsaw puzzle. I usually start the puzzle on November 25th or Thanksgiving Day, whichever arrives first. I have several holiday themed jigsaw puzzles I do and sometimes I am able to do two or three depending on the size while other years I only complete one. The one I am doing this year is a thousand pieces and I know from experience that it most likely will be the only holiday puzzle I do this year due to the size. The best part of this tradition is I get to see the “fruits” of my labor by the time Christmas arrives and enjoy it till January 2nd. Of course when I do several smaller holiday puzzles in a holiday season I see more than just one accomplished puzzle. Being able to see an accomplished puzzle helps with my personal morale for the season.

Even though the two traditions I mentioned already have been great traditions to keep and will continue to keep, I decided to add a new tradition this year. That tradition is to do some art. Specifically, coloring a holiday poster or two depending on size and detail. I have decided this tradition will be like the puzzles and start on November 25th or Thanksgiving, whichever arrives first. I have started coloring a holiday poster as of yesterday (November 25th). I am positive I will have at least one accomplished by Christmas Day.

For me starting my own holiday traditions has been a lifesaver for me and my recovery. The reason being is because most of the other holidays traditions I follow through with has some form of trauma or sadness tied to them and needed some that didn’t have either. Most of the other traditions I do includes family as my family is big on traditions. The holidays are not the best time of year for me due to the trauma I have experienced around the holidays so having traditions of my own helps me redefine what the holidays are for me.

I could go on and on about traditions however I won’t as I am getting a little sleepy and plan on going to bed. I want to thank you for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things. Again, thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading my blog. I hope everyone has a good night of sleep ahead of them if it is nighttime for you. If not I hope you have a good day ahead of you. Peace Out, World!!!

A Wednesday Evening Post

Good Evening, World!!! I am still dealing with increased Depression and PTSD symptoms and have emailed my therapist regarding it. I emailed my therapist regarding the increased symptoms just to have him be aware of the situation even though I personally think the increased mental health symptoms are due to the health issues I am dealing with. The health issues I am dealing with happen to be a “severe Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) and mild right Kidney Infection.” It is not uncommon for me to have an increase mental health symptoms whenever I have an UTI which just makes things the much more uncomfortable. My therapist emailed me back about the email sent him about me struggling and he too “hope symptoms improves” as my infections improve. I am grateful that I have a therapist that is supportive.

I just got back from Red Robin with a friend who lives in my apartment building. I treated my friend to Red Robin as a thank you for putting up with my shit. My friend is an awesome individual and extremely caring. She was and is very appreciative of me taking her to Red Robin. We ended up having the same thing at Red Robin which was The Whiskey Barbecue Burger with bottomless fries. She had an ice tea to drink while I had a freckled lemonade which is strawberry lemonade. It was nice to spend time with a good friend at my favorite restaurant.

When I arrived home from dinner at Red Robin with my friend, I noticed that the three books I ordered from Amazon arrived. Thankfully, they left them outside my apartment door instead of outside the apartment building door. The three books I ordered are about race as I want to be a better ally to people of color. I also order two more books from Amazon about race. One of which should arrive tomorrow and the other book is on back order and should arrive at the end of September. I am going to start off reading the book “How To Be An AntiRacist” by Ibram X. Kendi. I will let you know how the book is and will do a book review on it. Reading is one of my go to things to help my mental health symptoms and anytime I can be educated on anything is a plus. I really hope I can get a better understanding about race as I want to be the best ally I can be. If anyone has any books about race to suggest, it would be greatly appreciated. Remember, I have three that arrived today including the one I mention, two on the way from Amazon and one in my Amazon cart. So, if you suggest a book that I may have or will have don’t take offence if I say something that “I have it” or “its on the way” or “its in the cart.” I look forward to all the good reads.

I do not have much more to say. I want to thank you for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated. Again, thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading my blog. I hope everyone has a good rest of your evening as well as your week. Peace Out, World!!!

A Random Wednesday Afternoon Post

Good Afternoon, World!!! At this very moment the symptoms of my Depression and PTSD and am grateful that I am able to nip it in the butt with skills I normally do. Sadly, I am not going to my writing group because I am not feeling well physically which is probably why I am having an increase of Depression and PTSD symptoms. Part of why I am not feeling well is because I according my doctor I have a “severe Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) and mild right Kidney Infection” which sucks and the antibiotic I am taking is making me nauseous. I really don’t like being or feeling sick but at least I am not in the hospital.

Being in the hospital sucks and since we are on the subject of hospitals, my dad is still in one. He is on the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of a local hospital here in the Seattle area. His surgery went well and he is healing well from it. Sadly, my dad has fluid on the lungs and the doctors are trying to get rid of it. My dad has a history of pneumonia and is still in the hospital as a precautionary thing and is receiving IV antibiotics.  My dad is feeling better and wants to go home. He is eating solid food and the doctors say its okay that my dad drinks Diet Mt. Dew. So, I know my dad is feeling better when he wants his Diet Mt. Dew. I just wish the fluid on my dads lungs would hurry up at resolve.

I saw my therapist yesterday (Tuesday) and we discussed my increased Depression and PTSD symptoms and he is in agreement that the increased in symptoms are likely in part to my current health issues with my UTI and kidney infections. We discussed on ways that I could feel better as well as skill I could use to help with my increased mental health symptoms. One of the things my therapist and I discussed was the amount of time I was spending on social media, specifically Facebook because I am just aimlessly scrolling it as a way to help myself but it is becoming more of a hindrance for some of my symptoms. We talked about going on Facebook with a purpose like to post or say hi to someone and limit the time I am on Facebook. We discussed other things I could do instead which led me to having a conversation with my therapist about book suggestions I got from both white and people of color friends about race in America. We discussed that I as a white person one to better understand my white privilege and how I can be a better ally for not only friends but my clients who are people of color. I told him that I am expecting three books about race and racism as well as white privilege at some point today via Amazon. My therapist was “impressed” that I am wanting to improve myself and understanding of race and he “feels” that with me doing this will help me stay off Facebook and build a more meaningful type of structure I need for my recovery. My therapist likes the fact that I am wanting to educate myself to understand race, racism and white privilege here in America. We also discussed other ways to structure my time to help with my PTSD and depression symptoms. I really like my therapist and am grateful to have him as a clinician.

I don’t have much more to say. I just hope the books arrive today as “guaranteed” by Amazon so I can get to reading the books I ordered from them. I want to thank you all for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things. Again, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I hope everyone has a good rest of their Wednesday as well as their work week. Peace Out, World!!!

A Random Post About Things

Good Afternoon, World!!! I am still dealing with the symptoms of both PTSD and Depression which sucks shit. I wish I didn’t have to deal with any mental health diagnosis but sadly I do. There is not much I can do about having a mental health diagnosis except to use healthy coping skills.

Coping skills such as doing mindfulness and meditation practices. In fact this particular skill is something that I make an effort to do every morning on a way to start my day as I find if I quiet my mind at the beginning of the day, my day tends to be a more skillful day to where I can handle things more easily. I also try to use it throughout the day as mindfulness and meditation appears to help me reconnect with the present moment.

The thing I have been doing most of today that I have found quite helpful is writing. I am taking a creative writing class that is put on by an organization that puts on art and creative type of classes for low income people. Anyway, this quarter I am taking a creative writing class that focuses on characters and scenes but mainly characters and no it is not a play writing class. The organization that is putting on this class offers a variety of classes every quarter but you are only allowed to take one and this is the same organization I took my comics class with. Anyway, the instructor of the writing class assigns us homework so he can make comments on it so we know what to improve upon and what he thinks is great. The homework is not for grading but for feedback. I am really enjoying the class so far.

As much as I love to write, I was starting to come to a type of writers block in regards to my writing homework so I stopped and decided to do some things that needed to be done. One of those things that I needed to do was to make a doctors appointment with my primary care physician for my regular check up I have every two to three months. In fact I am about a month and a half over due for this appointment. After making my doctors appointment I went and picked up my meds. My psychiatric provider wants me to pick up my psych meds twice a week. So I pick them up ever Monday and Friday. There are reasons I will discuss at a later time on why I pick up my psych meds twice a week. I am not a big fan of it but if it is helpful for my recovery then I am willing to do so.

Now, I am about to go on to Spotify to listen to a podcast. Specifically, I will be listening to a podcast about philosophy. The philosophy podcast I will be listening to is Philosophize This. I am learning so much about philosophy from this particular podcast and am grateful for the learning for many different reasons. One such reason is it gives me something to discuss with others.

Since I will be listening to a podcast on philosophy I will also be coloring. I will be coloring the color page I have discussed with you as well as shared with you of what I had done. In fact I finally finished the bridge in the picture. In fact let me share with you what I have done thus far. The picture below is what I have accomplished so far:

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The picture I showed you in an earlier post except the bridge was just barely started and now the bridge is finished.

As you can tell from the picture above the bridge is complete but I have so much more coloring to do in the picture. I think, I will either work on the tree or the river next. Not sure what yet but will get to that once I turn on the philosophy podcast I am listening to.

Now that I have bored you to death with what I do to help myself when my PTSD and Depression act up, I am going to end this post. I also want to end the post so I can list to the philosophy podcast as well as color. But before I go, I want to thank you for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things as if it was for you my reader, I don’t think I would continue to blog and I would only journal. Again, thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading my blog. I hope everyone has a great rest of your Monday. I also hope everyone has a great work week ahead of them. Peace Out, World!!!

Fighting Off Depression & PTSD

Hello, World!!! At this moment in time I am struggling with the symptoms of both my Depression and PTSD. I am not sure why the symptoms of my PTSD and Depression are acting up but they are. I wish I was not struggling with Depression or PTSD at the moment or ever but sadly both are a part of my life.

Since I am dealing with Depression and PTSD symptoms I am doing a variety of things to help not make the symptoms get worse are at least that is my hope. Right now I have been focusing on getting things together for a peer conference I will be attending on August 27th and August 28th however I will be arriving August 26th as I will be volunteering once again at this particular conference. I have attended every except the first year. So that means, I have volunteered at the second and third year it occurred and now am volunteering at the fourth annual Peer Pathways Conference. I am preparing for the conference by making my travel plans and booking a spot on an Amtrak train. I love taking the train. Another thing I am taking care of is making sure my cat, Lil Gertie, will be taken care of. Thankfully, I have secured a reservation for an Amtrak train and have secured a cat sitter for my cat, Lil Gertie. So, I am looking forward to this conference as many of the seminars, happen to be training’s that will be helpful for my career as a Peer Counselor even though I am not currently employed as one at the moment. The best part of this conference is that it is totally free for me since I am volunteering. Well, the conference, food, and hotel stay are free but I have to pay for my own travel which is okay with me. I will be going to the Amtrak station tomorrow to purchase my train ticket for my travels to the conference in a week. When I am at the conference I will miss my cat, Lil Gertie a great deal but she will be in good hands.

Speaking of cats, Lil Gertie, has been a great help with dealing with the symptoms of both my PTSD and Depression. She has been extra snugly and cuddly today which is something I have been need all day. I love the way she just lays on my chest and purrs. Having, Lil Gertie pick up on the signs when I am struggling is great because she didn’t need any training to do so and I haven’t had her since a kitten which means when I adopted her last year, she was meant to be my emotional support cat.

Another thing I have been doing to help combat my PTSD and Depression is doing homework for the writing class I am taking. I am really enjoying the writing class as it is focusing on characters and later scenes and now it is not a play writing class. I am enjoying the fact that I am learning different types of characters and how they play a part in a story. Maybe I can share one of my homework assignments with you later on in the writing course I am taking.

Besides writing another creative way I have been trying to reduce my Depression and PTSD symptoms is art work. The genre of art I have been focusing on besides writing is coloring. Coloring has been quite helpful for me and plan on giving away the stuff I color away as gifts. I will be framing the finished coloring projects so people can put it on their walls. I love to color and have been coloring since I was a kid. I got made fun of as a teenager because I continued to color and now “adult coloring” is a thing and it is something I never stopped doing. Coloring relaxes me.

I don’t have much more to say because I would end up repeating myself and nobody wants that. I want to thank you so much for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things that you read my blog. Again, thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading my blog. I hope everyone has a great week ahead. Peace Out, World!!!

A Depressive Saturday

Hello, World!!! I woke up this morning to it being sunny outside yet extremely depressed. So depressed that I have been isolating all day which is not a good thing for me. Isolation tends to makes me more depressed. Being depressed sucks shit.

Even though I have been depressed all day and haven’t felt like doing shit, I have done something. I have managed to make some progress on the poster I am coloring which makes me quite happy. Coloring is a type of mindfulness exercise for me.

As I colored I listened to podcast. I listened to a podcast on philosophy and found another podcast that I started listening to on mythology. Mythology is a topic I enjoy as Wonder Woman background is in mythology. So throughout the day I would switch back and forth to a philosophy podcast to a mythology podcast. Being able to switch up topics is a good thing especially as I color.

I do not have much more to say. I just want to thank you for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things. Have a wonderful rest of your evening as well as your weekend. Peace Out, World

So Far, It’s Not A Good Friday

Good Evening, World!!! I am not having a very good Friday due to the fact that my depression and anxiety symptoms are acting up and I am getting easily angered. Specifically, I am getting easily angered at myself. I am getting easily angered at myself because I feel like I am not handling the symptoms of my anxiety and depression as well as I think I should be handling them. The reality of the situation is that I am handling the symptoms better than I think I am because I am not making the situation worse and am making a life worth living for myself.

The thing I have come to realize over the years, I tend to get angry with myself due to my mental health symptoms even when I am reacting to them in a positive way like building a life worth living. Even if people may not think I am building a life worth living with the things I am currently doing, I am building a life worth living because I am educating myself as well as being creative through art.

The way I am educating myself is listening to a podcast on Spotify about philosophy and after each episode, I research what the podcaster discusses. In fact the podcast on philosophy I am listening to is “Philosophize This.” Stephen West is the person that does “Philosophize This” and I personally think he does a great job. He captures my attention which is a good thing because of being diagnosed with ADHD and me wanting to educate myself further on what he discusses in each episode. For me willing to educate myself on a particular subject and/or topic due to how someone conveys the particular subject (and topic) says something about the person discussing it. When a friend of mine suggested that I listen to “Philosophize This,” I was hesitant at first but when I listened to the first episode Stephen West had me wanting to learn more due to his approach on the subject of philosophy. It is because of Stephen West passion for the subject of philosophy is why I am self educating myself.

As I listen to “Philosophize This” I am being creative by doing art which is another way I am creating a life worth living. The particular form of art I am doing as I am listening to the podcast is coloring. I am coloring a poster to give to my therapist to hang in his office. I realize that coloring may not be what most people consider a life worth living but for me if I can color something for others to enjoy, its a life worth living because others are able to enjoy what I created.

Even though I am coloring and listening to “Philosophize This,” I am still struggling and not having a good Friday. I wish the symptoms of my depression and anxiety would subside but sadly they are not which is why I am getting angry with myself. Being angry is never a good thing for me but if I continue doing good things for myself like listening to “Philosophize This” and coloring then I am able to control my anger. Being able to control the anger is a good thing.

I don’t have much more to say. I just want to thank you for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciative from my end of things. Again, thank you for reading my blog. I hope you all have an awesome Friday. I also hope you all have an awesome weekend. I hope you all enjoy the next couple of days. Peace Out, World!!!