December 24, 2019
Okay now to get serious. I have to start with this picture. When I was on vacation with my dad I was feeling pretty good but I was remembering some things that were a little bit painful. My dad helped me enjoy myself and relax but the thing that helped me the most was eating a nice dinner and finding this shirt. “Take Time To Be Kind” Hard Rock Café Honolulu, HI. A couple years back, I found a quote by the late Kurt Vonnegut. Kurt said, “There’s only one rule that I know of, babies-“God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.” Since my parents named me Charity that is something that I have tried to always be: kind and compassionate. I don’t always succeed especially when I’m relapsing but I think that it’s an important message. I can be pretty mean and hard to live with when I am unwell. There is too much hate in the world right now…Let’s all strive together to have this as one of our goals. To me it doesn’t matter who you are, what you what you believe as long as you are kind to me and my friends and family and don’t yell and cuss a lot, you’re okay in my book.
Everyone who knows me knows I love to shop but rarely find anything in the stores that fits me the way I want it to fit. But I was shopping at Target and they had this tank top. It was paraphrasing a quote by Mahatma Gandhi. It says “Be The Change You Wish To See In The World.” I bought a magnet several years ago that introduced me to this saying and it has always been one of my favorites. The amazing thing about this shirt for me is that it empowers me to be my best self. But when I’m sick I get so cynical and depressed about it thinking I’m useless and have no purpose here. I constantly have to be reminded by my mother that I made a difference just by being born. I have never gotten more compliments on anything I was wearing in my life if you don’t count when I got really dressed up for the weddings i was in. I was in the middle of relapse when I had my dad take this photo. It will probably be the only time I include a photo from the dark times.
Okay bare with me I just have two more photos. I could feature different quotes every month I have found so many good ones but I will just share two more with you. I have finally been given permission to include a quote on my blog from one of my personal heroes, Pat Deegan. She is a survivor who lives with Schizophrenia and is one of the most successful people I have ever met. She travels the world to promote her program Common Ground and trains peer specialists and does all kinds of other stuff I don’t even know about. I wish I would have taken notes when I met her but she treated me as an equal. Even though I am not schizophrenic, back in 1999 that was the first diagnosis they gave me because I was psychotic. Anyway, sorry for rambling but here’s her quote.
My goal is to write in such a way that people will have hope and hopefully will relate to some of the things I write about…I wish that I could just write whatever but I am very sensitive to negative feedback. That’s why I have been writing my book for so long and haven’t been more aggressive in trying to publish it because it has some references to God. I hope my friend knows how thankful I am for her. Even if we never talk again I will always remember she opened my eyes to so many things that I used to be afraid to look at or I felt uncomfortable about. Some folks on youtube and a discussion forum for depression made me feel really bad about myself and I considered giving up posting comments but since it’s anonymous I will continue as long as people don’t trigger me. I have learned not to take everything other people say personally especially when you don’t really know them in real life. Of course, that is much easier said that done.
The final quote is from Kay Jamison I wasn’t able to find a way to get her permission but I am sure she won’t mind. She really helped me when I met her after I told her all of my diagnoses, my degree, and my dream job I asked her if she thought that I would ever be able to work. She said and looked right at me, “There’s always hope.” 2008 was a very tough year for me but meeting her and some other peers at a Depression And Bipolar Support Alliance conference made a huge difference in my life. That’s where I met Pat Deegan too.
Thank you for your patience my dear readers. I hope this is your best year yet!