Blueberry Pancakes

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There is usually a reason people choose to work in mental health. At least I think…some people do it because they love people, some people have their own issues, and some people because they know or knew someone living with mental illness. For me, it’s all three. But the mental health issue I face is depression-nothing that has kept me from living a “normal” life. The real reason I came to work in mental health was because when I was 18, I found out my high school sweetheart was bi-polar, sadly just like his mom-who at about 7 or 8 had killed herself with a handful of pills. There is nothing like knowing someone who has lost a parent as a child by suicide, then growing up with them as a teen learning they succumb to the same illness. It was and always has been a life changing event for me. I never saw people with mental illness the same way again.

I think what affected me the most was not hearing him tell me of his diagnosis, but watching it slowly develop over time. I watched someone I knew morph into this person I didn’t know. He was my first boyfriend, so it was sort of like watching a lobster boil in a pan, it happened slowly until it took him away from me and ultimately away from  himself. I will never forget the day I met him.

I was headed to cheerleading practice, I was 14. I decided that day for some reason, I was going to ride my bike across town-and even for where I lived, across town was like wayyyy across town. Don’t ask me what in the hell made me decide to do that, that day-alone with no one, but a 45 minute bike ride in rural Ohio that day must have sounded like a good idea.

In the last 15 minutes to practice-I ran into a group of boys hanging out on their bikes on a bridge that went up and overlooked the highway that cut under the old county back road. I was nervous as I rode past them, then thought how embarrassed I was going to be going up the hill, huffing and puffing with my butt in the air and they were going to all be watching me. At some point though, before the hill, I noticed one was starring at me-and although I don’t remember all of the details I gave him my number. That night after practice, he called me.

I knew who he was. I had seen him before in the year books, but he was a grade ahead of me. I think I saw him a few times the year before in the halls, but I don’t exactly remember. He had dark hair, dark eyes, high cheek bones like Jonny Depp and was vivacious, full of life and energy. His name was James and amidst all of our weird conversations, he wanted me to ask my mom if I could come over his house and go on a date and make me blueberry pancakes. Such a weird thing to offer and I don’t remember us ever having them, but what a sweet thing to say. I’ll never forget that.

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While I’m Doing Ballerina Turns…

Oh yeah, 36, recently divorced, (again),listening to Sia-doing pirouette’s in my apartment-yeah, neighbors, that’s me. Damn now is as good as any to write about some, (and I mention some) of the crazy I have had in the last 3 months of my life. Jesus, we are talking gangsta shit, psycho shit-no I am not kidding-there is some mental health, white coat, in chains in King county jail shit, orange is the new black type shit, you get it… If I could tell you all, I would but I can’t-but…I will share a little bit in to a love story that will blow your minds…amidst my dreams to write a magazine, or a book, or make a chair or any of my crazy rants. I told you all in a post before-“crazy people” make you question reality don’t they? Listen to my story then…it’s an adventure you won’t forget. See what has been going on in my life here in Seattle. I have more to say than you can imagine-stay tuned.

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Honey, I want to be a Doctor…

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I just recently decided to drop the bomb on my spouse that I want to go back to school and earn my PhD in psychology. Our life is perfect-and here I go screwing things up. A Midwestern gal from Ohio, I have always wanted to study psychology near Seattle. The reason stems from someone I was very close to and knew early in my life who still lives with mental illness. Knowing and watching him  and his experiences created a heightened sense and respect of what mental illness is all about.

And then the stories, sad as it is, the heinous popularity of serial killer stories riddle the area here in Seattle, where everyone seems to have a story connected to Ted Bundy or the Green River Killer, Gary Ridgeway. Both, being the largest serial killers in US history who lived at one point less than an hour away from each other, I say its a great place to start. Its worth noting I don’t focus solely on studying psycho and sociopaths, but I am pretty sure by now that I have met a few, not quite like the above mentioned (thankfully), but they are quite interesting. Ignorant as it sounds, I’m sure I’m one of many who has made a mass exodus to this region with similar expectations, that this would be the best place to study,  realistic or not. I am glad to be here, doing what I am doing right now. Its amazing, the things we subconsciously pursue usually become us.

In the short time I have worked in mental health, (right now less than 6 months) I have had the pleasure of meeting a client who has enormous obstacles to overcome. Listing them here would be both illegal, and damaging to someone who has already faced such devastating issues so early in life.  What matters is that I feel so very privileged to have met this individual but also to have gained his trust. Also the ease, (well not really), in which I was able to do it. It took time and patience but sometimes it took other things which can’t be taught which is just connection. You can’t fake that, and I’m beginning to believe now I have a reason to use all of my bad experiences for good in my life-and that somehow I may have a bit of antisocial personality myself, but I’m not sure. All I do know is that I feel I have taken on a huge responsibility of caring for people in a way I never knew or imagined I could, and it has changed my life both immensely and immediately.

But working for people can definitely change you too. You find yourself along with them, and if you thought you knew who your were, wait….and guess again. You build relationships on premises like meaning and purpose in life, things so central to human functioning, meaning and spirituality. Deep issues that stem way beyond building coping skills or breaking down defense mechanisms. People are not robots, they are complex. You learn if for nothing else, that life is about relationships and loving other people for who they are and where they are. Love isn’t all, but its 95%.

Caring for them reminds me of Christ and his teachings. Sitting with them reminds me of the teachings of Buddhism, that first we must accept that life is suffering. That is, the perspective of acceptance is something I can’t stress enough. Don’t expect anything…just enjoy the ride with them on the path of self-discovery and yours. It is really quite amazing to watch and study others. Brains with skin and faces. But they are so much more than that. They are teachers too.

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Dive into “Milky Chance” For RRRR-EEEE-AAAA-LLLL

Holy Milky Chance,

I didn't take this picture, but I wish I did

I want to devour Clemens Rehbein. And ladies, if you’ve listened to this delightfully surprising duo you know its not just those big brown eyes, perfect skin and fluffy hair drawing you in, its that voice too. A surprising mix of style and vocals that are slightly Chris Cornell mets G love and Special Sauce meets Ray LaMontagne…with deep electronic mixes reminiscent to? God, I don’t know what to compare the unexpected drop of beats that Phillips Dausch’s mixes in to songs like “Running.”

These guys have an incredibly unique sound with a mesh of genre’s you would never dreamed of making any sense. I discovered them on a whim to look up that voice one night after hearing “Stolen Dance.” The playfulness this duo puts off leaves a taste of Indie in your mouth, but wouldn’t seem fair to label a band that sems beyond labeling. Creative genius like this doesn’t come often. Tune in.

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Selfies Aren’t So Bad After All

selfie

A morning selfie

You know, I have a problem with the media calling us conceited, narcissistic, self-promoting and approval seeking from all of the “selfies” we take.  I disagree…here are a few reasons…

1. I enjoy other people’s selfies. On Instagram I follow a variety of people. Some of them dabble in modeling. They are in the business of being photo ready. Some of them are absolutely gorgeous creatures-male or female, like a rose, I enjoy looking at beautiful things-beautiful faces are one of them.

2. Selfies are a celebration of life-how many times have you taken a selfie when no one else is around? If you are like me, sometimes no one is there to capture you in a special moment or no one thinks to. I think my mom was my last great photographer. After about age 10, my record of pictures dwindled down significantly. Maybe you are in the moment of something you have wanted to do all of your life. Would it make sense to just let it slip away? Life is short, it’s our journey-most of us want to be able to remember it.. One day, if you are lucky enough you can look back at your story. Who wouldn’t enjoy that?

3. Selfies boost self-esteem. We all enjoy being caught at a good angle. You know what I mean, from the good side. Even Marilyn Monroe has a side she preferred to be captured from. How many pictures have you had where you are in a half blink, turkey neck pose that someone takes haphazardly and you wonder if they somehow have a secret plot against you? That one aint going in a frame, I can tell you that.

3. We are writing history-that’s right, history. In our current lifespan we are doing something no other generation before us has had the opportunity to do, leave a well-documented written and more importantly pictorial, (even allegorical if I may go that far), record of our lives. How awesome would it have been to have had generations before us leave such a history behind? I wonder what it would have been like if we could read the thoughts of so many people I admire, what would they have said? How would it compare to social norms today and how things have changed, advanced, or in some was even dis-evolved? There are a lot of things to say in pictures that defy any written word. You can’t re-write history when pictures tell a different story. I wonder 100 years from now, what all of our pictures will say about us?

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Good Morning

Full of lunatic antics….this video is absolutely ridiculous, but I love the beat so enjoy a good laugh, or a good beat, or both.

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Antiquing in Tacoma

I love antique stores. Until about a year ago, I was a complete stranger-but now if I want to treat myself to a special day, I’ll grab a large coffee, my shades and try to hit them all before 5-pausing for a fabulous lunch of course ;) While I still have so much more to see, here’s just a glimpse of one in downtown Tacoma on Broadway, (AKA Antique Row). Full of exquisite, intricately hand-carved furniture, a secret library any book lover would dream of, and even an Egyptian Sarcophagus.20140529-225654-82614680.jpg

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“Entitled to Kisses”-Arguments for Answers on UCSB Mass Murders

Was listening to Fox News this morning, not something I do every day-but on XM caught the host who was taking calls from listeners about the latest, (God I hate even having to say that), mass stabbing/shooting by 22 yr old Elliot Rodgers.

The show asked callers to discuss what they thought was the issue-gun control, mental health or misogyny. Interestingly enough, God, like normal was completely left out of the conversation. But hey, why start now? We are getting used to him being left out of a lot of things.

Let me start by saying this-before I get on my to my ranting and raving, I am a Christian, albeit not a perfect one, but I do believe in Jesus Christ who is the son of God who died for our sins. I have been ridiculed for this, laughed at-but honestly I have never known such a religion that is attacked when so many others exist. I don’t “bible beat” I’m not a perfect person, I cuss, spit and sometimes am a little self-indulged. I have done all sorts of things in this life I’m not proud of. I don’t have all the answers, I don’t believe that some people will automatically go to hell, it is necessarily some place “down there” and there is some devil waiting in horns. I have lots of questions about my own faith, but that is between me and God, so in this discussion what is to follow, I wanted to make that disclaimer here.

To me, God is love and more than a discussion on gun control, mental health or misogyny that is exactally what people like Elliot Rodgers needed. We all need it. Some may pose the argument-would having God in his life simply prevented what he did? I say yeah, maybe it would have. It may not have cured his mental illness or prevented him from getting a gun, but it sure as hell may have gave him some faith to cling to-some belief that things in years may have gotten better for him. Or perhaps he would have been more open to learning about his shortcomings in his own character and interactions with others in the face of his mental illness which affected his sociability. Having God in his life, he may not have decided to become his own “God” as he professed to become by killing others. But we all sort of do this when God is out of the picture, the self-worship thing, even if we don’t realize it-the attitude that we are the only one’s in control of our own destiny and the complete self-reliance we believe about ourselves.

Which leads me to the entitlement thing. First off, it was obvious to me this wasn’t in the same sense we have been hearing of the word in the media. In this case, the entitlement and arrogance in the videos are symptoms of Narcissism Personality Disorder-and thankfully, a clinical psychologist just confirmed my suspicions on HLN a moment ago. But there are other signs there-I have seen it before, in someone I have known, and I was trying to put my finger on it-then it dawned on me, the eye shifting, while searching for words, the psychotic laughter… were confirmed too-schizophrenia. It certainly doesn’t make it anymore comforting though, to know as a woman by any man that we are so desired as like an object to be had. This insane sexual attraction, (although he also appeared very lonely in many other ways), is something I just don’t get, wont get, unless I think I have a penis. How creepy this video just DEMANDS companionship and sex from females. It is very obvious to me that aside from NPD, he shares an attitude a lot of “normal” men have. His attitude of entitlement was extremely misogynic in the fact that somehow if he acts the part and drives the car, women should show up like drones…not only that but were his values were, whether that was from what he had been taught or what he had observed about the world around him and learned. Somehow, it seems that if he would obtain popularity and get lucky or have been shown some affection from girls, that would be enough to edify him, to make him a complete person. But what even disgusted me more, is another male who posted a video culmination of this young man stating he would have to “fight them off” if he drove a car like that. These sort of attitudes just proliferate the conception of women in the mainstream as money-grubbing hoes and nagging bitches. Some superficial women may indeed respond to a man solely based on his material possessions, but that linear statement across the board is bullshit. How often are women portrayed as they are? The one’s who bust their asses, take care of the house, work, take care of animals, children, cook, clean and deal with ex’s, baby mama drama and support and love their man. Instead we get DEMANDS FOR SEX AND AFFECTION and commercials like the one Dish network put out with the wife as annoying, ditsy marionette made of wires-a bona-fide moron- a RIDICULOUS PORTRAIL OF WOMEN-ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTS ME!!!!!!!!

I could go on, but some final thoughts…my first and foremost thoughts were actually not misogyny at all-gun control even less, (although I am not quite finished on that), they were all towards mental health. This is what I would do to fix these problems going forward-and it’s so simple…(even Dr. Drew agreed and tonight was the first time I ever even watched Dr. Drew). If we know that someone is getting care, allow the mental heath professional to use their judgment to have them incarcerated! Why do we have to disclose this to someone at all?! Isn’t it common sense that if a person start telling someone, anyone that they were seriously thinking of killing others or ourselves that someone could use common sense to see if we suffer from a diagnosis such as paranoid schizophrenia and a psychotic episode was about to happen? Wouldn’t most health professionals do this anyway? The answers are right there but all we get in the news is “until someone gets serious about mental health…” Where the hell are the ideas for solutions? Forget the discussions. I am done with talking about stuff-use your grey matter and get to work. We aren’t going to go back to the old days and shock people to death or perform lobotomies. Other clinical opinions can be made in through a short term mental health evaluation. Dr. Drew suggested, a doctors note for instance, to enter a higher university could be a start. We could take this a step further and add family centered therapy-and if that didn’t work, (privacy rights often prevent family members from knowing what’s going on even if they are willing to get involved), then just leave it up to the doctor to have an executive order to restrict a person from obtaining a gun. The big point to remember here though is knives were used, as well as guns. If they can’t get a gun, they will get a knife, if they can’t get a knife, they will get a hatchet-if a person wants to commit murder, they will find a way to do it. Rat poisoning is available in hardware stores-should we ban people from entering Lowes and Home Depot? Other than the concealed weapon that this final act of violence has convinced me to get, lets use our heads in regards to warning signs of those with mental illnesses, privacy laws, and background checks of those who should be allowed the same access to guns. And furthermore, before we start talking about misogyny on a widespread basis based on this case, can we address a fucking commercial first? There, I said it.

Youtube videos

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F It, Why Not?

Sitting here at my desk I wonder, what to write next. Its not that I have no subjects to share with the world, I have too many.

My dad and his wife have been sharing with me about a class they are taking that has been transforming their lives, sort of like a life coach thing.
While I don’t see myself prescribing to a class myself, it is always interesting to listen to people like Tony Robbins or Joel Osteen because you always feel better about yourself afterwards. Rarely have I felt worse. Now, if you listen to Joel, that means you are prescribing to Christianity and if that offends you then maybe you should stop reading now, or you can read on and challenge a bit of what I have to say later. So why am I writing about these guys? Because they inspire people to do more-to be more. No matter what it is that you are doing, (and for many this is related to their business ventures), they urge you to go out and do your best, rise above the beliefs of you own potential. Listen to God’s plan he has for you and respond to it.
Which has me thinking about my own life. A lot.

Until recently, I was employed in a good paying job, not a very stable job-but who has been able to say that since about 2003? And I have been looking for work like so many American’s, desperately. So desperately, I am feeling very stuck, frustrated, desperate, enraged…need I go on? After applying for job after job, one door shut after another, one finds themselves looking for work outside of their profession, or living area, looking to obtain further education, or starting their own business. This is not my first time having to consider these things, but in the shape of our economy it just has been getting worse. As they say when you have nothing to lose, you have everything to gain. I have found this to be true of so many talented people I know who were facing extreme consequences and rose above. Some sink, some swim. Who are you? A sinker or a swimmer? I actually hate that phrase because rising above dire consequences doesn’t depend on our abilities at all, it depends on our mindset.

So my dad had shared with me about making a list like they did, about my talents and abilities/things I enjoy. Then the task was, pick the top two you could not live without. Those are the things you need to be doing, or talent you need to be sharing with the world. This wasn’t too hard for me because I already knew the answer. The first was writing. Hands down. It has always been my passion. But I didn’t put too much weight on this list because this isn’t the first time I have done one of these sort of self-finding lists. Sure, we make the list, we have discovered our one of 16 different personality types suited for a profession etc.., etc…but now what? I just go quit my job, (if I could find one), and write a book? With my crazy commute, how could I even fit something more into my schedule? I once asked a successful and happy, Christian friend of mine, a friend who has always sort of been a touch and go mentor of mine, who also has a good paying job, can it really be done? Can a person really afford to match their passion with their profession? And how can it be done? He had managed to do it-but I realized later he worked very hard, took huge risks and was at the end of his rope when he decided to jump. So it can be done, albeit he didn’t give me a direct answer, I found it in the details, that most people are not fortunate enough to be pushed to being only left to their own devices.

In reality, I have been doing what so many others have been doing and my dad and his wife are right. I haven’t decided to follow my passion. I have lacked faith and time management skills. Often times, as they described, you can’t even share your passion with people who are the closest to you. They don’t even believe in themselves, so how in the hell can they believe in you? Besides, people like me don’t write books-right? Well, only if I say so.
Now that doesn’t mean we will all rise to amazing things, but even the humblest of single moms, like my mom, can rise up to amazing things. They can practice good self care, ask for help when they need it, work hard, go to work, stay off drugs, make good choices. I choose to pick her as an example because she has taught me that even someone who feels like they may have nothing to offer to the world in ways of education or talent can inspire people more than they know. Sometimes I think that is what stops good people from staying good. No one there tells them they make a difference.

So now I guess, I am going to write a book. I’ll rephrase that, I will write a book, or I will write and devote my time to writing something for sale and share my abilities and talents with the world. Sometimes I want to write a magazine. Who knows, maybe I will do both. The worst part of writing is I never picked that number two off of the list…my only love is writing. The other stuff, just things I enjoy. So maybe I can just write all about them, or just one, or some of them or, well who cares…just write. F it, why not?

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When Being Mental Isn’t Enough

I haven’t posted about this at all, but I am a huge, huge reader of true crime. In fact, other than fashion and home magazines the only reading other than that is about true crime. After moving to Washington, I had to know who/what the Green River Killings were about, then after reading an amazing book by Ann Rule, moved on to “The Stranger Beside Me,” a very chilling account of Ted Bundy. It’s so chilling, its unbelievable. I am currently in the middle of it and without giving defense to serial killers-I have to ask this question. Is it not enough to be a socio/psychopath? That is, to avoid the death penalty? Law says, one must not know the difference between right and wrong. So many people commit evil acts, trust me-I believe in the death penalty, but what the hell makes someone kill another person? They do know right and wrong, but something separates us from them-something that I think they cannot help. I wouldn’t want to save one of these SOB’s, I just want to do some more reading on the subject. Apparently, if a person is also suffering a delusion, I have read that at times they can be spared the death penalty. But killers of people need to be taken out. You can’t just kill that many people and expect not to go down like an animal. Those are just the rules.

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