Tag Archives: writing

Reading & Writing

From a very young age, I’ve always loved the written word. I loved to read and I could not get enough of it. No one had to tell me to read, in fact, no one did. I just enjoyed getting caught up in an adventure. I was a very lonely and shy child. We moved around, a lot. I rarely went to the same school each year. When I went to a new school, I had to take tests to see which grade to put me in since I didn’t have records. I also had to get new immune shots for every new school as we didn’t have those records either! I was a very sensitive child, and I hated those needles. I cried every single time. We were poor so I didn’t have very many of my own books other than what the school gave me. My life was very traumatic and so I just used reading to escape from it. For many years, I really didn’t talk a lot about the trauma because it made many people feel uncomfortable. I learned to keep my mouth shut which was not a very empowering choice.

I needed to tell my story. For the most part, I learned to talk about my trauma in therapy or with very close friends. My story really isn’t meant for everyone but I now know it was not good to shut down around people. I walked around with a general feeling of rejection and self loathing because I didn’t feel accepted. I didn’t realize this wasn’t true, I simply had shut down because some people didn’t like my stories. Not everyone would have rejected me telling the stories. Sometimes people didn’t want to hear them simply because they couldn’t accept another version of reality, they could not comprehend why I hurt so badly.

At some point, I learned to write my feelings down. I didn’t dare share the writings with anyone. What would happen if anyone knew what I was really thinking or feeling?? My thoughts were private and hidden. I felt better getting it out though. Writing is a very powerful tool for people who especially have a hard time expressing themselves. I didn’t talk much but I sure could write. Now that I’m on the other side of my healing, I did learn to effectively share my experiences in therapy, I am able to talk about whatever. I am able to share with others without breaking down in tears, severe anxiety or unable to function afterwards because the telling was so traumatic.

Writing has been very therapeutic for me. It has been an effective tool for my own healing. I feel like I’m writing a good friend, which is me. You can write yourself anything you want, exactly like in the reading where you can go on any adventure you choose. Hehe. I have not written much lately which I realize I was missing very much. I miss the daily visits with getting thoughts out of my head onto paper or the computer screen. It’s one of the ways I connect to myself like in meditation or going on a long walk.

I’m a very deep thinker and introspective. I think about life, people, and the state of the world. I think about heavy topics, my family, and how to make a difference in the world. I think about things that are important to me, but don’t we all? The most important thing I want to say in this post is that people want to be seen, they want to be witnessed and heard; it is a common trait in humanity, especially in children. If you don’t get this as a child, you grow up feeling invalidated and having an inferiority complex that needs years of therapy to heal! This is at the heart of why I learned to love myself. I learned to read, write, witness others and myself. I learned to give myself my own ear, my own heart and my own time. I learned to speak about it, write about it, and heal myself.

Today, I share my stories, not because I want to be witnessed but to uplift someone else. I share to bring light upon a subject or raise awareness. I share because it might help someone get a different perspective. I share to heal because I’ve been there. I share to let others know it’s okay to talk about it. I share to inspire and give hope. It’s okay to be open and vulnerable. I share because I can. I share because I care. Remember, love yourself always!

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New Year, New Choices

Today, while walking down the street, I saw someone who looked like one of my former Psychiatrists. I smiled as i walked by the person and inwardly felt a great sense of wonder and gratitude as I recalled all that I had overcome. It’s been about 7 years since I took my last psychotropic medication. I used to take antipsychotics, antidepressents, antianxiety medications, including Adderall, a stimulant! I was a huge mess! I took these prescribed medications for nearly two decades. I was a typical mental patient, I had a Case Manager, and I also had Severe Mental Illness status due to numerous suicide attempts.

Today, I’m an entirely different person. I’m no longer plagued by debilitating anxiety, triggers, depression, and suicidal ideation. It was a long road but I am happy to be where I am today. I was like a zombie back then, though. Now, I just blissed out on meditation and positive energy! I had someone tell me that I probably wasn’t really crazy (and I wasn’t), but that I was just misunderstood. I looked at him oddly because he has no idea where I used to be. It’s easy to understand this mentality because I am not who I used to be, at all.

Over the years, I faced my fears, I faced my trauma, I faced my feelings, I learned skills training, and did lots of grief and processing work to get to where I am today. I am not saying that everyone is going to do it the way I did it, but this is how I did it for me. A huge part of it was learning to love myself, talk therapy, meditation, writing, and also letting go of lots of fears.
There’s nothing to be ashamed of if you are taking any type of medication that helps you to function. Don’t let that trip you up. I know it bothered me for a very long time. Not only that, but I was expected to be on the psychotropics for the rest of my life! Well, I’m not on them and I’m just fine. I’m not suffering from depression, anxiety, PTSD or any other mental illness symptoms. I’m just me.

I’ve always been quiet and reserved. I’m very introspective and like to daydream. I don’t do life the way other people do it, and there’s nothing wrong with my version of reality. I’m a very sensitive person and sometimes this is mistaken as weakness or weak willed. I’m not that either. I have a tender heart and have no intention of changing it. I’m not going to toughen up, I’m not going to grow thicker skin, I’m going to keep on being gentle, kind and sweet, especially to me! Loving yourself is the greatest gift you can give to yourself and is the beginning to creating a new you, a new life, and new possibilities. Love yourself!

This year, I’m planning to release my second book. (My first book is called, “Dear Sophia, Love Yourself!”) It’s going to have more details than my first one, and will be about my spiritual awakening as I was healing from mental illness. It will be about overcoming a lot of fears, learning to meditate, and use metaphysical tools, like crystals, for my healing. Yes, it will be a lot of woo-woo stuff, and I’m here to tell you it’s not crazy; it’s empowering and liberating! I’m excited for the next phase of my journey, and the positive things I’m bringing into life this year.

This all represents personal choices that I made over the years to assist in my healing by changing my thoughts about illness, learning to master myself, and live consciously every minute. Sometimes I do have ups and downs which is the nature of human life, I just don’t stay down. I learn my lessons and get back up. There’s no shame and blame, I am responsible for what I do with this precious gift of life I’ve been given. Happy new year everyone!

Freedom from fear!

I’m lying down in bed, propped up by two pillows, as I write this blog post. Sometimes life is exhausting, and no matter how much I want to participate in it, I might shrink back out of fear! I have to consciously break through the fear barriers almost everyday. Every new day, is an invitation from life to come out and work, play, enjoy the world, be alive! Life is constantly presenting itself. Maybe there’s a moment of laughter when you see something funny. Or there’s grief and sadness due to the floods and devastation around the world. Maybe there’s comfort and warmth when you see someone helping another. This is the stuff of life!

I ask myself from my bed, what can I do? Well I can pray. I can write notes. I can post encouraging stuff on mass media. Yet sometimes it’s a challenge to roll out of bed. I can send money or encourage others to send money or goods. It’s all in perspective. Everyone can do something. If you smile at a neighbor, help a friend or take a nap because you’re tired, loving yourself, it’s enough. It’s more than enough! You are enough!

Too many days, I’ve had inspiration come to me and I didn’t act upon it because I was afraid. I wanted to speak up. I wanted to say something nice and helpful or I wanted to speak against something horrible but I told my voice to be quiet. I told myself, “no you don’t do that!!!” Yet today, I’m kicking my fear out! I’m telling it to shut the f**k up! I’m telling it, “you’re not welcome here!” I’m not going to allow it to paralyze me anymore. This is all part of my journey. I appreciate all my friends, family, and fans who are patient with me. Those who loudly or silently stand by and cheer me on! Thank you so much! I appreciate those who understand my secret struggle to come out of my shell and be all that I can be, which is enough!

Anytime you see me posting something, that’s me giving birth to a new version of myself who is not afraid. It’s me shedding layers of fear and and holding back from being my true self. It’s me bursting out of the shell that has kept me in constraints! Maybe this post sounds a bit like I’m self absorbed but I’m really thinking of others. I’m thinking of others who have fears or anxiety of putting yourself out there. I’m thinking of people who doubt themselves or have low confidence.

My writing is really to inspire others. I share about my overcoming just to inspire someone else to overcome, too! It’s because I love myself and I love the world. I want everyone to feel empowered and special. I want everyone to not be afraid to shine their light and offer the gift of themselves to the world. I want everyone to experience this freedom from fear! Loving and accepting others is the best gift to anyone, to release fears, and live in personal freedom and empowerment. I love myself, and release all fears that do not serve my highest good.

Truthing

“…the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God.” It’s the oath we make when we’re in court. But what about everyday truth? Who do I bear allegiance to then? Usually it’s me! We all have different versions of truth. When I’m talking about something and someone absolutely cannot see it happening or refuses to believe it, it doesn’t change my truth and I don’t change it to make them feel better! Or do I?

Many times, I’ve watered down something to help someone accept what I’m trying to say because they just could not hear it! However, I found this to eat away at my core. It bothered my conscience. I would feel empty inside and misunderstood. I couldn’t tell the whole truth! It’s very uncomfortable. It’s not authentic. I have learned to be careful with who I’m sharing my truth with. I don’t just tell anyone because not all are ready for it. It’s okay. It’s not for everyone either.

Everyone all around the world have different versions of truth. I believe everyone has the innate ability to hear, discern, and know truth. There’s an internal guidance system called our intuition. It really depends upon our early teachings, our impressions, and what we personally believe that leads to interpretations of truth. This is an undeniable fact. So many people hear the exact same story, but based on their filters and personal beliefs will interpret it in their own way that makes sense to them. Whatever you hear me NOT saying or between the lines has more to do with you than me! Think about it…

It is good for your mental health to question truth every now and then!  What are you believing or telling yourself?  Is it really true?  Is it true today, right now, or is it something from the past?  Is it your belief or someone else’s?  Do you water it down for  someone else?  Do you exaggerate it?   It is written, “the truth will set you free.”  What is truth?

My blog posts, and my book, Dear Sophia, Love Yourself, are primer’s to get people to start thinking about issues differently. To look at them from a different perspective to learn, grow, or change mindset. They are especially written to spark an “aha” moment! It’s works for me! Comments are always welcome.

Free To Be Me

Today our nation collectively and privately remembers and grieves the devastation of the 9/11 terrorist attacks fifteen years ago.  The theme for today’s blog challenge is freedom, what it means to me and why I do what I do.  I wrote my blog post early this morning and I took a break.  While I was taking a break, I thought some more about my blog post.  I thought of the words I used and the parts I had intentionally left out.   I realized since I censored some things, I hadn’t fully communicated what freedom means to me!  I had an “aha” moment.

This blog is one of the many outcomes of healing from mental illness.  However, I know that if I was still depressed, taking psychotropic medication, suffering with flashbacks from post traumatic stress disorder, and all the other problems I had at the time, I would not be writing any of this!  Because somewhere in our world and society we’ve decided not to talk about shameful or painful things.  We’ve decided it was not okay to hear about our wounds.  We’ve decided we should only talk about positive things.

There is a stigma especially for people who suffer with mental illness.   I understand there is a time and a place for these things, yet many times I cried in the darkness of my soul, all alone, because many people just didn’t want to hear about it.  For instance, at a ladies meeting at church, we broke into small circles for more intimacy.  When everyone was invited to share what’s new in our world, I said I was struggling with side effects of my medication for depression.  The facilitator replied, “let’s talk about something more positive.”  This was not an isolated incident.  It happened over and over again in various situations.  Or, sometimes people would say since the hurt happened a long time ago, I should just get over it.

When I think about freedom, it is to live without fear of tyranny, terrorism and oppression.  It’s also not living in fear of rejection and having to censor yourself, filter your words to make others more comfortable.  I do believe in the adage, “speak the truth in love”; to write and talk with compassion and consideration for others.   I eventually came to accept my truth and not hide in shame or embarrassment of it. This is how we grow and learn to accept, love, and honor ourselves which leads to healing.    It is listening with an open heart, and giving space to someone who might not have all their stuff together.  It is being authentic and honest.  I realize some people can’t handle the truth, and they live in fear of others finding out.  Fear is a cage we lock ourselves in real tight with the illusion of keeping our secrets safe.

It is perfectly normal and okay to grieve as long as it takes.  It’s okay be a work in progress.  There’s no rule of how long it takes.  It’s okay to be in therapy, have a psychiatrist and take medication.  Do what it takes for you, precious ones!!  Don’t let anyone make you feel less than or inferior because you have different problems or deal with life in your own way.   Life is beautiful and we are meant to be free to express ourselves in our own fashion.

Freedom is sharing from the heart what is most important to me.  It is having compassion for myself and others because I’ve been there.  It is living free without fear of what others are going to say or do.  It is living comfortably in my own skin, with my own personality quirks, and accepting all of it.  It is being my own unique self and not in competition with anyone else.  I can only do me, and choose to be my best self each day.  It is being free to shine my light, a la Sophia style!

“This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 2 [insert URL for this blog post, which ishttp://suitcaseentrepreneur.com/10DBC-Day-2]”