When you have depression, bi-polar, PTSD, or any other issue that makes you unable to live it can be stressful and frustrating to others. No one can make the person get up and enjoy life, when it becomes a deep hole life passes you by.

This blog is to let everyone know that it isn’t them, it isn’t the things they are trying to do, it is the chemical or mental challenge that consumes the person living with the illness. They can be so very happy one minute and what ever the trigger they can turn around and become lethargic. They can be working or going to school and doing extremely well and the next minute they are calling out sick.

Anything that is going on with them needs to be viewed as an illness and that it can pass. Don’t just let the person live it alone and never peak in to see if they are okay, because sometimes these triggers can also lead to suicide. Be mindful, be caring, but don’t be irritated or frustrated.

On the write talks a bit about it all We feel completely stuck. On the write talks a bit about it all We feel completely stuck. There is nothing physically attaching us to our bed, but we feel completely unable to move. Our body can feel heavy and sluggish. Our limbs can ache, and no position feels comfortable but the thought of moving makes us want to cry. Our brains work incredibly slowly or stop working entirely. We can’t think. We can’t remember how to get up and get dressed. Everything feels overwhelming and impossible. The biggest thing anyone can do is let them know they are not alone and that they will not be abandoned.

Are You Struggling?

Are you struggling throughout the day? Do you find that you can’t get up and be a motivated human? Is your body or mind struggling in every day to day tasks? Today, I have another migraine driving me to not get up and exercise, because of this I am depressed about who I am, what I am or am not doing, and I feel my body growing and I am uncomfortable.

I sit and think about what I should be doing, that I no longer want to go out and be with friends on the weekend. Everything that we do as humans is to grow and be connected to others, when I am this way, I make it to work and a few words to the kids, but other than that I am in solitude. I know this isn’t healthy and I know that I can do better. All I want to do is jump up and be happy, get on the phone and call my friends. Who should I call? I really have no idea because I have created a cocoon around myself so I can’t be hurt by anyone. This creates a cycle of depression.

Some days are great but then after a while I do it all over again. The worst part about the seclusion is gaining migraines and the weight. If you to are struggling, find a way to do one thing a day. Every day move to have another thing. Day 1 do one thing, day 2 do two things, and so on. For Day 1 I have decided to make cookies. That sounds great, right? After 2 different types and a couple of hours later, I am staring at bags of cookies. 4 bags to be exact. I made almost 100 cookies and have only 1 grandson who is able to eat cookies. Looks like my kids will be munching down on cookies too. I end up eating cookie dough as I cook, just like I can plop a piece of raw potato in my mouth when it comes to making mashed potatoes. All this cooking sounds great, but now I am even more bloated than I was when I walked into the kitchen.

To answer my posing question, yes, I am struggling.

Dealing with the Loss of a Loved One

Loosing a family member happens every day to many people. This doesn’t mean it hurts any less. In April 2017 I lost one of my best friends, my (adopted) dad. In January 2018 I lost I lost my (adopted) mom. At this time, I wasn’t sure where life was taking me. I was extremely close to my dad but not as close to my mom. I decided to do a DNA test on and found a cousin. He turned out to be a cousin on my mom’s side. He too was adopted just a few months after I was. He told me that his (birth) mother, whom he met a year earlier, had a sister. After talking with him and then one of my birth sisters, we realized I too was part of the family. For several months I talked to the family getting to know them.

During this time my birth mother found out she had lung and brain cancer and she wasn’t going to be on this earth much longer. I was able to get my daughter and grandson out to visit her. I was on the West coast of the US and they were on the South East coast. If you believe in God or not, I do, I was able to meet my birth mother, father, two of my sisters, a great niece, aunt, grandmother, and cousin. A day after we left my birth mother passed away, March 2019. Finally, a couple of months later my birth grandmother passed away and I am now here wondering if the feelings others have been how different than how feel, or if this is what people normally feel.

I have very sad moments then I don’t have any thoughts, as if it never happened. The moments that they jump in my head I feel extremely guilty for not having them on my mind all the time. I don’t know if it is how I was raised, how I was born, or a mixture of both or mental disconnect.

I am blessed to have the parents I did but it would have been a blessing to have been around my birth family the past 54 years.

Loosing a family member is difficult and grief takes shape in multiple ways, I just haven’t wrapped my head around the loss of a father, two mothers, and a grandmother in the past 2 years. I have a very busy life, when I am not alone in my own thoughts, which I believe helped me not to be stuck in a downward spiral. Moving past a loss may takes different paths. gave 7 stages of grief (modified Kupler-Ross model):

Shock: Initial paralysis of hearing the bad news

Denial: Trying to avoid the inevitable

Anger: Frustrated the outpouring of bottled-up emotion

Bargaining: Seeking in vain for a way out

Depression: Final realization of the inevitable

Testing: Seeking realistic solutions

Acceptance: Finally finding a way to move forward

The American Hospice Foundation stated ways to avoid saying to someone who’s grieving:

“It’s part of God’s plan.” This phrase can make people angry and they often respond with, “What plan? Nobody told me about any plan.”

“Look at what you have to be thankful for.” They know they have things to be thankful for, but right now they are not important.

“He’s in a better place now.” The bereaved may or may not believe this. Keep your beliefs to yourself unless asked.

“This is behind you now; it’s time to get on with your life.” Sometimes the bereaved are resistant to getting on with because they feel this means “forgetting” their loved one. Besides, moving on is much easier said than done. Grief has a mind of its own and works at its own pace.

Statements that begin with “You should” or “You will.” These statements are too directive. Instead you could begin your comments with: “Have you thought about…” or “You might try…”

We all have had or will have a loss of a loved one, we all need to have the ability to grieve on our own terms, which means we to need to allow others to grieve on their own terms.

Suicide Watch Is Always Needed

It can happen to anyone; happy, sad, medicated legally or illegally, or being bullied. Do you know what to look for? I remember the first time I was affected by suicide; I was a freshman and a boy in our class shot himself in his family’s barn. That was just the beginning and didn’t think I would ever be touched by suicide. As the years pass, I found myself touched through family, friends, co-workers, and celebrities. Why does this happen? What are people thinking when they try or commit suicide? For me, it was depression. I was able to pick up the phone and call my dad and then a friend. I realized I was lucky to make the decision to call my dad. So many others are not. We want to be mad at them, we cry and can’t wrap our heads around it. Some people leave notes and letters, others do it through drugs and end up overdosing, thinking drugs will make it better.

You can learn more about why people try and do commit suicide. Alex Lickerman with Psychology Today gives 6 reasons why:

They’re depressed. This is, without question, the most common reason people die by suicide. Severe depression is almost always accompanied by a pervasive sense of suffering as well as the belief that escape from it is hopeless. The pain of existence often becomes too much for severely depressed people to bear. The state of depression warps their thinking, allowing ideas like, “Everyone would all be better off without me” to make rational sense. They shouldn’t be blamed for falling prey to such distorted thoughts any more than a heart patient should be blamed for experiencing chest pain; it’s simply the nature of their disease. Because depression, as we all know, is almost always treatable, we should all seek to recognize its presence in our close friends and loved ones. Often, people suffer with it silently, planning suicide without anyone ever knowing. Despite making both parties uncomfortable, inquiring directly about suicidal thoughts, in my experience, almost always yields an honest response. If you suspect someone might be depressed, don’t allow your tendency to deny the possibility of suicidal ideation prevent you from asking about it.

2.They’re psychotic. Malevolent inner voices often command self-destruction for unintelligible reasons. Psychosis is much harder to mask than depression, and is arguably even more tragic. The worldwide incidence of schizophrenia is 1 percent and often strikes otherwise healthy, high-performing individuals, whose lives, though manageable with medication, are often derailed from their original promise. Schizophrenics are just as likely to talk freely about the voices commanding them to kill themselves as not, and also, in my experience, give honest answers about thoughts of suicide when asked directly. Psychosis, too, is treatable, and usually must be treated for a schizophrenic to be able to function at all. Untreated or poorly treated psychosis almost always requires hospital admission until the voices lose their commanding power.

3.They’re impulsive. Often related to drugs and alcohol, some people become maudlin and impulsively attempt to end their own lives. Once sobered and calmed, these people usually feel emphatically ashamed. The remorse is often genuine, but whether or not they’ll ever attempt suicide again is unpredictable. They may try it again the very next time they become drunk or high, or never again in their lifetime. Hospital admission is, therefore, not usually indicated. Substance abuse and the underlying reasons for it are generally a greater concern in these people and should be addressed as aggressively as possible.

4.They’re crying out for help, and don’t know how else to get it. These people don’t usually want to die but do want to alert those around them that something is seriously wrong. They often don’t believe they will die, frequently choosing methods they don’t think can kill them in order to call attention to their challenges, but they are sometimes tragically misinformed. For instance, a young teenage girl suffering genuine angst because she feels lonely or has gotten into a devastating fight with her parents, may swallow a bottle of Tylenol—not realizing that in high enough doses, Tylenol causes irreversible liver damage. I’ve watched more than one teenager die a horrible death in an ICU days after such an ingestion when remorse has already cured them of their desire to die and their true goal of alerting those close to them of their distress has been achieved.

5.They have a philosophical desire to die. The decision to die by suicide for some is based on a reasoned decision, often motivated by the presence of a painful terminal illness from which little to no hope of reprieve exists. These people aren’t depressed, psychotic, maudlin, or crying out for help. They’re trying to take control of their destiny and alleviate their own suffering, which usually can only be done in death. They often look at their choice to die by suicide as a way to shorten a dying that will happen regardless. In my personal view, if such people are evaluated by a qualified professional who can reliably exclude the other possibilities for why suicide is desired, these people should be allowed to die at their own hands.

6.They’ve made a mistake. This is a recent, tragic phenomenon in which typically young people flirt with oxygen deprivation for the high it brings and simply go too far. The only defense against this, it seems to me, is education.

A way we can help is with the “Out of Dark” suicide walks.  I have been a part of the suicide walk where people share their stories. The walk is healing because you meet so many people who understand what you are going through. Sharing stories that are sad and give hope to others.

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention puts on the suicide walks through out the US. They believe that having the walks and donating monetarily will save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide. The website will have information:

Anytime someone is showing signs that they want to hurt themselves, reach out to a professional. We might feel we are imposing but I would rather impose than loose someone.

Humanity Can Make Me Depressed

I am not sure if I am crashing into depression again. But I can tell you that humanity is depressing. I want to delete all social media when someone I know posts about animal abuse. I am hypersensitive to these posts. I am not sure if it is because I am an animal lover, or if destruction of an animal by a human sickens me into depression. I do know if a post comes across my eyes, I see it for hours and sometimes days. I want to find the individuals who have harmed an animal and do the same to them as well. I understand that this continues to happen and we as humans must do better, but why is it important to now post horrific videos, of less than human people, harming and abusing animals. If I was strong, rich, and powerful, at least enough to bring them all in and pay for what they are doing in jail time. Personally, I would say disregard the idea of jail, and do to them as they do to the animals.

Because of the stroll down my Facebook just to see what was happening for the day, I have now sat in my room just disgusted with how people can be so cruel. I will not share what I saw because it is sad and might make you angry. I wish I had the ability to just move on past these types of posts and not be affected, unfortunately it isn’t that easy. Having the ability to write down my feelings is becoming a lifeline to moving past it all. Depression comes from all types of things, mine can be triggered by cruelty.

As I was thinking about this all and realized I am not the only one that it affects like this, because of this I did some research on what is being done and what can be done to help these animals.

World Animal Protection posted online, 8/29/19, 7 Animal cruelty facts and what you can do to change the statistics7 facts.

1.  75% of WAZA’s zoos and aquariums offer irresponsible animal-visitor interactions

2. 95% of pigs are raised on factory farms where they can’t behave naturally

3. Most sloths in the tourist entertainment industry die within 6 months of capture

4. There’s a 96% chance that an elephant attraction keeps its elephants in unacceptable living conditions

5. At least 75% of pet snakes, lizards, tortoises and turtles die within one year of becoming a pet

6. There are 5,000-6,000 tigers living in captivity in China to fuel the traditional medicine industry

7. Newborn primates bred for the primate pet trade are forcibly removed from their mothers after birth What You Can Do: Message your state representatives to support the Captive Primate Safety Act (H.R. 1776).

Some Nonprofit animal organizations that can help are the Humane Society of the United States, Animal Legal Defense, Best Friends Animal Shelter, ASPCA, Maddie’s Fund, Hope for the Paws, Alley Cat Allies, and many more.

I read and understand that not only do I need to find ways to help, outside of monthly donations, I need to look at my life and see if there are other ways

Financial Success Even With Depression or Mental Illness

Finances can get overwhelming. Worse is to have depression that exasperates the situation. It just starts to spiral out of control. Do you get up and go to work, do you stay in bed and just hope it goes away or fixes itself. We all know that bills continue to happen, it continues to happen on a regular basis and no matter how far we hide our head in the sand it just keeps coming.

As a mother of 3 young adults and 2 grandsons it becomes a struggle just looking at the amount I earn and wondering where does it all go? I always feel I don’t need anyone to be with and I want to be with someone for financial security. I guess I just need to earn more and more and more. If my kids are all self-reliant, I would be in a much better financial situation. I am not as bad as I was in the past. I do get things paid; however, I can’t go to the mall and buy a new outfit. I am in a constant turmoil over why I still am helping my young adult children. I have always been the type of parent that would never let them go without, some say this is an enabler, and I agree. However, I have also been able to be a bit more vocal on what they need to do on their own.

When I crunch the numbers, I know the mall is in my near future. When they don’t need my help, I will be able to look at my salary and understand the end is near and the savings will grow. I would say everyone take a breath don’t let depression creep in and take over the will to stay on top of your bills.

Some easy ways to help is keep a calendar up where you can see it. Hang up a white board and block out areas. Set up set monthly bills; Mortgage, electric, phone, etc. Set up revolving/installment debt; credit cards, loans, car, and other payments that have an end.

Take the revolving debt and each month pay off the credit card with the highest interest or pay off the lowest balance (with the highest payment) while the rest is paid with the minimum balance. As you pay off one credit card/loan then pay more on the next one until paid off. Continue the cycle until all revolving/installment debt is paid off. The biggest part to control is to put the credit cards away. They should not be closed out but put up until all revolving/installment debt is paid off. At this point utilize the credit cards enough to show up on your credit but pay the full balance off each month. Never go over 25% in utilization.

This is the hardest part about being debt free, financially secure, with depression is staying on task. The need to put away the credit cards if it will reoccur when you are depressed and want the high of shopping. These high lasts long enough to buy the items, see them at home, then when the bill comes the depression becomes worse. The cycle can be self-defeating and can send your credit into a spiral of negativity.   

If you are depressed and find yourself in a downward spiral with your finances. Take steps to help yourself. The smallest step is a start. Get the calendar, get a white board, get financial guidance, and make sure you have money coming in. I was able to pull myself out of depression and have a better outlook on how I pay my bills. I hope you can as well.

There are many financial books on how to become dept free, you can get them at the library, book store, audio book, or borrow them from family and friends (if they have them available).

How Can I Help?

Being a family member or a friend of someone who has mental health issues can become overwhelming. How do we become involved in the healing, caring, or to stop enabling those who are being self-destructive? Where can I go to get help, what do I need to know, or how to I keep myself and family protected from someone with a mental health issue? Such a simple set of questions but to many answers can be found. I want to give some scenarios and then what can be done to help. All definitions come from Mayo Clinic’s website, Knowing firsthand how mental health concerns can cause distance between those you love and have family and friends that have mental health concerns guides me to continue to talk about the ways to help and watch for signs. Below are the definitions of six disorders.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): A mental health condition that’s triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event.

Suicide: taking your own life, is a tragic reaction to stressful life situations — and even more tragic because suicide can be prevented. Whether you’re considering suicide or know someone who feels suicidal, learn suicide warning signs and how to reach out for immediate help and professional treatment. You may save a life — your own or someone else’s.

Bipolar disorder: Formerly called manic depression, is a mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings that include emotional highs (mania or hypomania) and lows (depression). Episodes of mood swings may occur rarely or multiple times a year. While most people will experience some emotional symptoms between episodes, some may not experience any. Although bipolar disorder is a lifelong condition, you can manage your mood swings and other symptoms by following a treatment plan. In most cases, bipolar disorder is treated with medications and psychological counseling (psychotherapy).

Schizophrenia: A serious mental disorder in which people interpret reality abnormally. Schizophrenia may result in some combination of hallucinations, delusions, and extremely disordered thinking and behavior that impairs daily functioning and can be disabling. People with schizophrenia require lifelong treatment. Early treatment may help get symptoms under control before serious complications develop and may help improve the long-term outlook.

Depression: Feeling sad or hopeless and lose interest or pleasure in most activities. When your mood shifts to mania or hypomania (less extreme than mania), you may feel euphoric, full of energy or unusually irritable. These mood swings can affect sleep, energy, activity, judgment, behavior and the ability to think clearly.

Generalized anxiety disorder: Has symptoms that are like a panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and other types of anxiety, but they’re all different conditions. Living with generalized anxiety disorder can be a long-term challenge. In many cases, it occurs along with other anxiety or mood disorders. In most cases, generalized anxiety disorder improves with psychotherapy or medications. Making lifestyle changes, learning coping skills and using relaxation techniques also can help.

If you or you find your friend or a family member is not being themselves, it’s best to not get upset with them. Each of us have our own issues and we need to remember this.

Tired? Who Me?

Have you ever looked at someone and not understand what they don’t get about being tired? Shoot is it my medication, is it the fact that the kids are wanting something every other minute, or is it something more? Well, depression takes a hold of me and I start to spiral down. Taking on tasks and then leaving them half done. Asking me such a simple question makes me psychoanalyze myself until I think I have lost my mind. I become angry at myself and angry at those who point it out to me. What I find is if I find something to ease my mind and then pick up just one task and complete it, even if it takes me all week. At the very least it puts my mind on a task rather than what is wrong with me.

Depression can take over your life and boy has it from time to time taken over mine. The idea of depression can be a stigma you don’t want to talk about, it can become so debilitating that you can think the only way out is to end it. There was a point in my life the idea of suicide is the only thing that would save everyone else the pain of having me drag them down. Well, that is what I thought as do many others. We think that everyone is being burdened by our actions, words, or lack thereof. What did I do? I called my dad, rest his soul, and he was there for me just as he had been all the times before. Climbing off the suicide train can be a hard thing but once a person feels no end it seems to be the one last thing that will end all the pain.

I have always wondered why those before my experience and after was unable to pick up the phone. I will never know but there is one thing everyone can do is to join up with a Suicide Walk in a city near them. I did and it was the best way to hear stories from family and friends of those that didn’t make it back to those that did. I guess you could say I am in a club, not one I would like to admit, but a club just the same. So strange that a club I belong is met with sorrow and sometimes happiness, but that is the way it rolled out for me.

When I am asked if I am tired? I am looking forward to telling them yes, I didn’t get enough sleep instead of trying to figure out a lie to be left alone.

Just to get up and eat

Just to get up and eat seems like a task. I look at my dog who is sitting on my bed whining. I want to shew her away and then feel like I should yell at her because she is bothering me. I catch myself because she then cuddled up next to me, as if she knew I needed comfort. Comfort from what though, I am doing fine, I mean starting to live paycheck to paycheck doesn’t seem fine, However, I know I will be good. It is the issue I have on a regular basis. It comes from stress, loneliness, fear of being alone when the kids move out, and I think anything else I have no clue about. Back to the fact that the task at hand is to get up.

During the week I have work that gets me up, no matter the thoughts. Then why I ask myself, do I find the weekends are incredibly hard? This must be fixed; I think to myself. That seems like the result but what about the fact that I need to get there. Based on my doctors, my family, my friends, and what I have read; I need to put myself in the shower and start from there. Shower it is, the water makes me feel better, but my body makes it worse. My mind wanders back and forth about when I didn’t have the weight I see around my mid-section and wonder why I can’t do what I need to do to get rid of it. For God sakes, I have a treadmill and elliptical in my front room facing the window, so I have a view.

I get irritated and somehow it doesn’t get me to work out it makes me start to clean. Not as many calories are burned but my house is getting cleaned. I start the laundry, the dishes, dust, and vacuum. What is happening? I am getting up, I am cleaning, and I am eating. Some how I took over the feelings of depression and fueled it with irritation and anger. Not the best way to switch out, but I can figure out the irritation and anger better than I can figure out the depression. The irritation and anger come from my shorts being a bit to tight and the infamous “muffin top” climbing over the top of my shorts. Okay, I think, force yourself by having your son tell you to work out every day when I get home. Then when my grandson is here, I need to make sure he rides his bike with me in tow, walking briskly behind him. The relationship I have with my grandson I think of the relationship I had when my kids were little.

All these thoughts take the irritation and anger down to a smile of how he makes me both crazy and happy. Just as easy as the depression, irritation, and anger comes, the happiness takes over. I believe that changing your thoughts can help change your current mood. The times that this won’t work is when you have a medical condition that makes it hard to do this.

Seeking a doctor, psychiatrist, or therapist would be the next step if it continues to get worse. Sometimes it could be a medication you are on or need that can create these issues. In my life I have visited all three. I did learn some techniques and one of the best ones is to find a happy time and start to think of all the things that made it happy. Doing this can help paint a picture that takes your mind to a different area.

Based on they have 9 things that can be done to help reduce depression without medication, again this is if you don’t have a medical issue.

1. Get a routine

2. Set goals

3. Exercise

4. Eat healthy

5. Get enough sleep

6. Take on responsibility

7. Challenge your rational of thoughts

8. Do something new

9. Have fun!

Any one of these can seem challenging but if just one step forward can move you to a happier life. Everyone, has bad days but depression is beyond that,

Saddened over the affairs of the past weeks

I don’t want nor believe the blogs I will post will be filled with political rhetoric. I am here to help with mental and physical health and wellness. With that said, I want to take time to share in the feelings of sadness for the place and world in which we live. It is at these times depression, sadness, and anger can intertwine. Shootings, stabbings, taking parents from children, animal and child abuse, and so on resonates in my soul and heart in a degree that it is hard to breathe. These are the times empathy and emotions can run high.

It takes me days to get through the feelings making me no go for anyone. If anyone else is having a hard time take a moment to find the center point of your feelings, talk through it with someone who will listen (not make these negative feelings worse), and finally know that your life is important and if you want to make a change than get out and help or focus on your well being. We still have those who are selfless and caring.