A Conference & An Emergency

Hello, World!!! This week has been quite a week. Parts of it emotional as an unexpected family emergency happened which I will tell you about later in the post. I started this week traveling from Seattle to Tacoma for a peer conference. Tacoma is about thirty miles south of Seattle. I took the Amtrak train as I love taking the train because it is really relaxing for me. It beats taking public transportation. One of my favorite parts of traveling by train happens to be the views I am able to see. I did take a picture of something that I normally don’t have time to take due to the speed of the trains but I was able to take a picture of another train. The train is pictured below:

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A picture of a BNSF train. Thankfully, both the train I was on and the BNSF train were going slow enough to capture the picture.

Anyway, when I arrived to the hotel for the peer conference I wasn’t expecting it to be as big as it was. It is a twenty six story hotel with a lot of amenities but sadly they did not have a swimming pool. As disappointed as I was that there was not a swimming pool, the view from my room on the twentieth floor was awesome. I had a view of Mount Rainier. Below is a picture of the view I had of Mount Rainier as well as the Tacoma Dome:

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View from my hotel room. Mount Rainier as the Tacoma Dome.

The peer conference was great and loved the fact the I was with about five hundred other people in recovery with a mental health challenge and/or a Substance Use Disorder (SUD). The workshops I attended were awesome and the best part about being at the conference was being able to volunteer and be of service to fellow peer counselors.

Sadly, during the morning keynote speaker on the second and final day, I received a call from my grandpa telling me that my dad was going to have emergency surgery later that day. My grandpa and I discussed that staying at the conference was the best thing for me to do since the surgery wasn’t going to be till four in the afternoon and that I would have plenty of support from my friends at the conference as sitting around the hospital wouldn’t be helpful for me. I went to a couple of friends to let them know what was going on and they agreed with my decision with staying at the conference for a few more hours because even though my dad was having emergency surgery it was scheduled for later in the day which was a good sign. My friends and I discussed that staying at the conference was a good idea but we all agreed that leaving at an earlier time would also be a good idea. So, I was able to arrange for someone to take over my volunteer duties and leave to take the three in the afternoon train instead of a train after the conference was over. I am grateful that I took the three o’clock train as my uncle picked me up and I dropped off my luggage at home and then went to the hospital.

As I waited at the hospital while my dad was getting surgery a lot of my fellow peer who are friends checked in with me via text or phone call. Having the support of friends and my family as my dad was getting surgery made me feel blessed. I am grateful for friends who have been checking up on me during my dads surgery as well as after his surgery. My dad did well during the surgery and is now in the ICU. He is doing well even though he is in the ICU. He has his sense of humor which is a great thing. I am glad my dad is doing better. I am beyond grateful to have friends in recovery checking in on me to see how I am doing and I am doing pretty good considering my dad had surgery.

I don’t have much more to say except thank you to my fellow peers for being there. I also want to thank you my reader for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things. I hope to tell you more about the conference and my dad in a later post. Again, thank you for reading my blog. 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!!!

Everyday Inspiration; Day 6: The Space to Write

Hello, World!!! Today’s assignment for WordPress’s Finding Everyday Inspiration course is asking about the space we write in. For me the space I write in varies on a number of factors. It various on what type of thing I am writing as well as what type of mood I am in and what I use to write with.

For instance when I write in regards to my blog I write on my laptop which means, I am usually home. There are times when I am not home when I blog and usually that is when I am out of town so I most likely would be in a hotel room when I blog if out of town. When I write for my blog it is always via my laptop.

As far as other types of writing, I really think it all depends on what type of mood I am in. When it comes to writing in regards to journaling, I have a journal, I write in and most of the time write with a pencil. I am not sure why I prefer pencil over pen when journaling but I do. When it comes to where I journal it all depends on if I am needing to journal to help me regulate my emotions and if I have the place and emotional space to do so. Most of the time I find a place to do so. I usually like to journal outside as it gives me a different perspective on things.

When it comes to writing poetry I usually do it with a paper and pencil or on my laptop. Using paper and pencil or my laptop makes it easier to changes things in the poem if it doesn’t seem right to me. When it comes to where I write, I think it is dependent on what inspires me to write poetry. I do have a journal I keep my poetry in and that is when I transfer it to the journal in pen.

As far as writing letters goes, I think it all depends if it is a business letter or personal letter. When it is a business letter I type it on my laptop. When it is a personal letter I tend to write it with a paper and pen. Sometimes I even write on a postcard. I tend to write letters from home or in a hotel if I am out of town. When I get a chance to travel out of town any where even if its only two hours from where I live I like to write letters and/or postcards to people as it is always nice to receive snail mail.

The latest type of writing includes a combination of drawing, coloring and writing in the form of comics. I start out with paper and a pencil just in case I make a mistake or want to change something. After I am done with the comic, then ink it and color it. I started doing comics when I took an art class about comics. In fact doing comics is another form of art for me to do that includes writing. As to where I do this is dependent on my mood and what stage of the comic I am doing.

Before, I end this post and assignment, I was asked as apart of the assignment to ask you my reader to give me suggestion via my contact page on what you would like me to write about. It is for a future assignment. It would be greatly appreciated if you could help me out on this as it is for an assignment and it would also help me out for future post that is not related to an assignment. I would like to know what you would like me to write about even when I am not doing a WordPress course.

I do not have much more to say in the post. I am sorry I was so long winded in this post but apparently I was inspired about what I write and where I write. I want to thank you for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things. Again, thank you for reading my blog. Peace Out, World!!!

Friday Morning Random Update

Happy Friday, World!!! A great deal has happened since I last posted. In fact, I vaguely remember writing my last post as I was dissociating on and off through it. In fact my mental health treatment team is quite concerned about how much I have been dissociating and how long the episodes last. In fact I am just as concerned as they are. As concerned as I am in regards to my dissociative episodes, I am more fearful of them than anything else.

Last Friday at this time I was traveling to a small rural town in eastern Oregon to visit my great aunt and uncle with my grandpa, dad and two uncles. I normally don’t mind travelling but when you are in a normal sized car with four other people and you are stuck in the middle seat in the back for six plus hours, it’s the most comfortable of experiences. I, however do enjoy visiting my great aunt and uncle in eastern Oregon. I enjoy visiting both because they are both awesome at storytelling especially when it comes to family history.

After my grandpa, dad and two uncles visited my great aunt and uncle in eastern Oregon, we drove to Spokane, Washington to not only visit another great aunt but my grandma’s grave. It was nice seeing this great aunt but I was more grateful to visit my grandma’s grave. Not only did I see my great aunt and visit my grandma’s grave, I saw two friends who live in Spokane.

After traveling several hundred miles in two states I was extremely happy to get home on Monday (May 13th). I was happy to get home to my cat, Lil Gertie and sleep in my own bed. In fact, my cat, Lil Gertie, lectured me for a good five minutes. While I was out of town a neighbor who is a good friend watched Lil Gertie for me. I attempted to give him fifty dollars for his time watching, Lil Gertie, but he would only accept twenty five dollars. It’s great to have friends who will help you out when needed.

Going back to the topic of my therapist, I had a session with him. Unfortunately, I don’t remember it because I was in a dissociative state. He has been calling me daily to check in on me. Checking in on me on the daily basis is his way of being proactive and preventive of keeping me out of the hospital for psych reasons even though I am not suicidal or have urges to self harm. The reason why I would be in the hospital for psych ward would  be for the dissociative episodes which would leave me in a vulnerable state. I am all for keeping me out of the hospital as the hospital is not very fun.

I do not have much more to say. I want to thank you for reading my blog. It is greatly appreciated from my end of things. Again, thank you for reading my blog. Peace Out, World!!!

An Opportunity I Couldn’t Say No To

It’s been just over two weeks since I last blogged. I have usual excuses as of lately, which are: my symptoms were acting up or I was not in a good head space. Both of which are true but there have been times where I could have blogged.

One of those times I could have blogged was last Monday at this time. I was at the train station waiting for a train and I arrived three hours early by accident. I arrived three hours early because I thought my train left two hours earlier than it was scheduled to be. I was bored and I could have blogged as I waited for my train but didn’t.

I bet you’re wondering where I was going on the train. I know I would be wondering where someone was going if they were writing (or talking) about arriving at a train station two hours early. I will tell you where I was going.

I was offered a scholarship to attend a conference at the last minute. Not just any conference but conference specifically geared toward peer specialist here in Washington State. As badly as my symptoms were acting up I knew if I turned down the scholarship of attending the peer conference that I would regret it. I am beyond grateful that I attended and the only thing that it cost me was the train ticket to get there and back.

Attending the conference was just what I needed. It gave me the hope I need to help me with my recovery. Hell, not just my recovery but my career as well when I go back to work when things improve. It helped me a great deal with me getting refocused on what I need to, to get back on track. Things to help with my recovery and career as well as maybe some educational opportunities. In fact attending the conference was educational in it of itself.

We all know education can help with ones career. I hope that one day I will be able to get more of education to help with my career but that’s not what today is about. Today is about those who worked their asses off to get what they need to help themselves and the rest of us get better working conditions. Those people are the individuals that were apart of the Labor Movement. With out those fine individuals in the Labor Movement we wouldn’t have today; Labor Day. To those individuals working this Labor Day, thank for working today.

As I go and enjoy my Labor Day and end this post, I hope that I will post at later time about the peer conference. I learned a great deal there and would like to share my knowledge. I hope everyone has a good week. Happy Labor Day. Peace Out!!!