We are privileged to share blog postings from our Ambassador Jessie Close, Adrienne Gurman, Henry Boy Jenkins, and other guest bloggers.  Please visit regularly as our content will be updated often.

Vacation

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Does vacation conjure up all sorts of horrors for you? How about when you’re supposed to be having a great time but your mood didn’t get the message? A dear friend of mine, and fellow bipolar person, told me a story about having nine guests at her cottage for over a week. I shuddered.

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Stepping Outside Our Comfort Zone

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I consider myself to be somewhat of a veteran in the world of mental illness. For the past 10 years my family has been immersed in children’s mood disorders as first one and then another of my three daughters was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

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Statistically Speaking

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When I am unaware of my symptoms because I’m living within them, my therapist picks up on the subtleties and we tether. It’s her job to pay attention to the rhythms. I have learned to let pride evanesce. This simple action gives me the courage to speak when I am lost in my illness. My clumsiness and flatness become clues for us both. We work together because I am worth it.

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Medication

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I’m in a bit of a daze at the moment. I attribute this bewilderment to reading the journal I kept while in a psychiatric hospital. I had forgotten, over the past nine years, how sick I was and it has been quite disconcerting to re-visit it.

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Keeping Hope Alive

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I’m aware that trauma can be treated. I see and read about success stories every day and I’m inspired by the triumphs made by complete strangers and close friends. My desire to get better is potent enough to overcome this struggle. Thankfully I have a terrific support system in place and plenty of people who truly care for my wellbeing.

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Mirror Mirror

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Therapy set me on a course of cognition; a recovery program helped solve the drink problem. One evening our group topic was relationships. Most of the men were married or dating. Sobriety had helped them create meaningful connections. I shared about my awkwardness in talking with women, how the wild-pitch verbal aspect of my schizophrenia was tantamount to sneakers clunking away in the dryer.

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Willingness

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Willingness is also relevant to mental illness. I wasn’t willing to medicate away mania but depression was another story. I hate depression and I was always frightened when I felt its heavy hand on my brain, blackening my heart. Unfortunately, I couldn’t do away with the depression without killing the mania

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Hellish Shoes

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I remember, in the ‘70’s, wearing such high heeled boots that I tipped forward and looked ridiculous. But thinking back on it I don’t think even those heels were anywhere near what women are wearing today. Honestly, I thought women were more empowered and sensible these days. What’s going on?

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