Feeling Blue This Monday? 14 Videos That Will Have You Laughing Into Tomorrow

Having a rough Mental Health Monday?  Here are 14 videos that will definitely cheer you up…

 

 

 

 

 

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21 Images That Make You Understand Why The Stigma of Mental Illness Exists!

The stigma of mental illness SUCKS!  It is so bad that it causes those in the mental health community to ask, Why does the public have such a deep misconception about mental health?  The images relayed to the public pertaining to mental health are disturbing to say the least.  To reduce this “madness” we have to acknowledge the ridiculousness of the images, and words, used to describe mental illness.

Below are 21 images that make you say to yourself, “Oh thats why people think the way they do about mental illness!”

                               Stop Stigma.  Spread Love.

Dear Dad: A Letter From Your Daughter With Bipolar

I was walking through a dark tunnel, no light to be seen.  All I could hear were the echoes of my own voice.  In the moment that I wanted to stop, to give up on finding the light, I felt the strength and confidence you had instilled in me over the years, prior to this moment.  You didn’t come into the tunnel to guide me to the light, for you knew that would not help me in the end.  You gave me the knowledge, the power and confidence to overcome this battle prior to me entering.  As I walked into the light again, you were standing there gleaming with joy saying to me,  “I never doubted you Hannah….I knew you wouldn’t give up.”-Halway2hannah

The first man who had his heart broken by me,was my father.  To see the little girl who danced to the beat of her own drum laying in a hospital bed, withering away only 19 years later;  he could protect me from everything in my life, but the one person he couldn’t protect me from was me.  This is a letter to my father from his daughter with bipolar…

Dear Dad,

Happy Father’s Day!  Instead of sending you a card, I decided to write a post in form of a letter to share with my friends, family & followers.  A novel would not be enough room to share with the people around me the impact you have had on my life.  Your strength helped me get off the ground, your confidence gave me hope when I felt like there was none, and your heart is what saved me in the end.

I will not remember the material gifts you gave me, or how much money you spent, although all gifts received are greatly appreciated.

This is what I will always remember dad…

…you sitting on the sidelines, applauding and gleaming at my success as an athlete, a student, a young teenager, with hope in your eyes for my future.

…you sitting at my bed side a few years later, holding my hand at my weakest, believing in my ability to overcome this battle with bipolar.

…the proud look on your face, sitting in the crowd of over 1,000 people waiting to see me graduate from College.

I will remember these moments because your support for me never changed regardless of the situation.  On the sidelines of being crowned prom queen, or in the moment when I was too weak to move, you were always proud, and always believed in me.

Thank you…

…for working to understand my diagnosis, even though you may never fully get it.

…for making me feel like my power stemmed from my flaws.

…for believing in me, when I didn’t believe in myself.

…for always pushing me to succeed regardless of a diagnosis.

…for never giving up on me.

…for embracing the wild child in me.

…for allowing me to share the details of my life without judgment.

…for making me feel beautiful when my reflection told me otherwise.

…for finding me when I was lost.

…for listening to my late night rambling when all you wanted to do was sleep.

…for loving me when I couldnt love myself.

Thank you dad, for being the father not many can be.  I used to think love could only be observed in the best moments of our lives, but I was wrong.  A fathers love for his daughter is truly shown in the worse moments.  Not in the moments you are seen dancing, but in the moments you are seen crumbling.  A fathers love is endless, thank you dad for teaching me this.

I love you always Dad.

Love, Hannah

Dad

 

To all the fathers who are struggling with their daughters-Do not give up on them.  They are capable, and you are capable of teaching them how to find the light again.  There is nothing more powerful than a fathers love for his daughter.  Happy Fathers Day to you all!

 

 

We Are Petrified Of Falling In Love & This Is Why…

It is the first time in years you have been decently balanced on the beam.  You wobble, but not falling off is good enough for you.  And then you look behind you, and you see it coming…Love…and your feet hit the floor.

We are the patients of love.  So do you take the chance that you may hit the floor again?  Is it worth it?  First we have to acknowledge the reasons for why we fear the most beautiful part of life.

We are petrified of falling in love & this is why…

1.  …because it means we will finally have to let our guard down.

We will finally be forced to share the story that we have yet to share with ourselves.  To be open and reveal our insecurities with the fear that someone will take advantage of our vulnerability.

2.  …because we are afraid that our love won’t be reciprocated.

Relationships are never 50/50, and this is normal.  However, when it becomes 80/20, and we are on the 80 side of the equation, it emphasizes our insecurities.  It makes us feel weak, and powerless, building our inner wall a little higher when it comes to love.

3.  …because we are petrified that he/she will not accept our flaws.

Revealing our authentic selves is difficult.  It is scary to think that at the point in your life when you have finally embraced your imperfections, someone could come along, and make you think the opposite.  Being single seems worth it if it means we do not have to revert back to resenting the parts of us that we have been working towards accepting.

4.  …because if it does not work, it breaks a little piece of us.

Because each time our heart breaks, it breaks a piece of our minds and our soul.  And too many chips falling off could lead to the whole thing breaking.  It undeniably hurts, and as time goes on you may lose hope that love even exists.  A thought that is truly tragic.

5  ….because longing and lusting for him/her is just as scary as it is pleasurable.

Love is passion, and this is a beautiful element of it.  However, allowing someone to come into your life, and maintain this type of power over your body and mind can be just as scary, as it is pleasurable.

6.  …because we might bring the baggage of our past relationships into the next.

You fear that the damage done by ex-lovers will tag along with you into your next potential relationship.  It is hard to admit to yourself that someone from your past has had a negative influence on your present behaviors.  You don’t want to take baggage into your next relationship, so you are fearful about entering into one.

So what do we do…

We acknowledge our past, and confront our fears.  We take the risk, and fall in love.  If there is one thing in this world that is worth risking a lot for, it is love.  Love opens you up to new possibilities, and whether it fails or succeeds, relationships build your character.

Only reveal your authentic self when it is deserved.  Trust is to be earned, not given.  Enjoy the ride while it lasts, and if you hit the ground again, tell yourself that you are going to use the pain as a stepping stone to a successful future in life, and love.

 

 

Inside the Mind of a 28-Year-Old With Bipolar 2

Do you ever wonder what it feels like to wake up every morning, and fear that today will be the day that you will lose your balance?  I do. It is a challenge, but one that I am grateful for.  If you are looking for me to say how much I hate this disorder, you won’t find it on this blog.  I am never going to live without it, and I want to give others a taste of my reality. I do not place pressure on myself to be perfect. I am honest.  As long as I can find some type of stability on the balance beam of life, I am satisfied.  This is the mind I have been given, and I am learning to love it, while I have to live with it. Here is a little bit of an idea about what it is like to live in the mind of a 28-year-old diagnosed with Bipolar 2.

A constant marathon of the mind.

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You are coasting along a straight path, then you struggle to get up that hill.  The pain is almost a high.  In a moment you have no energy, another too much.  You feel like you are about to break, but don’t stop, you  have to keep running…

Some nights turn into dawn in what seems like an instant.  From reorganizing my closet to writing in my journal for hours, there are moments your mind is running so fast it is almost painful. You close your eyes, but your eyelids jolt, begging you to open.

So what do I do…Learning to harness my thoughts and utilizing my creativity to redirect my focus.

Never content.

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If God had Bipolar, He would not have created the Earth in 7 days. He would still be in the creative process. The day I graduated from the College, all I could think about was “You can do better!  You have to do more Hannah! Nothing is ever good enough, and relaxing while patting yourself on the back is nearly impossible. Being content in my mind is one step from slipping off the balance beam.

So what do I do…I breathe more often, and I breathe deeper. I have added exercise of mind and body like yoga.

Emotions run deep.

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I hear a song and feel the pain inside the singer’s voice. I smell a flower and can feel its growth. I am sensitive to other people’s pain and hurt, to the point it keeps me up at night. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night crying so hard I cannot breathe.  I laugh as hard as I cry, I hurt as hard as I love.

So what do I do…I turn my pain into art by writing, drawing and creating to express these emotions.  Exercise gives me a healthy release.

Treading Water.

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Everyday my eyes open, and I have to tell myself to do everything I can to keep my head above water.  I am one slip from falling to the bottom on a daily basis.  Some days are harder than others, but I refuse to drown.

So what do I do…I keep moving forward.  I keep active.  I do not talk about my “struggle” often.  I volunteer to help others outside of myself.

The lows are beyond explanation.

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You are screaming at the top of your lungs, but no one can hear you.  It is not a headache, it is a cloud in your head that makes it almost impossible to see.  You have no energy to speak.  You are empty.  You are numb.  The light at the end of the tunnel seems so far.

So what do I do…Again, I turn these moments into some form of art.  I set a goal for myself every day, and hold myself to it. I remind myself that tomorrow is a brand new day.

The picture above is a picture from my journal days before I was hospitalized in 2010.  I have never shared it with anyone until now. Sending love to all my mental health warriors. You are bold. You are brave. You are brilliant. 

 

 

 

6 Things Women Need To Stop Doing To Other Women

She is such a slut!  Ew, she is huge!  Did you see what she was wearing?  Why is he dating her?

The goal is to build a ‘sisterhood’ between women, however, there is still much work to be done.  We are harder on each other than we are on those keeping us below the glass ceiling.  Several women shared with me a situation, in which they felt abused or embraced by their fellow female comrade.  It is evident that a readjustment of our attitudes towards one another is necessary.

These are 6 things women need to stop doing to other women.  

1.  Stop blaming her for his infidelity.

This is common.  The boyfriend cheats, we blame the woman for our relationship problems.  She is not your problem, he is.  In many situations the “other woman” does not even know he has a girlfriend, and if she does, karma will be a bigger bitch than you could ever be!

I gave another woman hell about sleeping with my boyfriend.  She didn’t even know he had a girlfriend.  I married him, and we had two children.  He cheated on me with three different women throughout our marriage.  We got divorced two years ago.-Melissa, 42

2.  Don’t diminish each other’s life choices.

Whether you are a “work-aholic” or a “mom-aholic.” We need to empower each other’s life choices.  We are all making progressive steps as mothers, and boss ladies.  Clap for her, not at her.

I chose to have a career over having children.  It was my decision.  My sister has two daughters. My sister and I love to jump in each other’s shoes once in a while.  We respect one another.-Erin, 38

3.  Stop calling her a Slut.

We are justifying this type of name calling when we say it about other women.  If your girlfriend is living a lifestyle you think is dangerous than confront her about it, don’t call her degrading names for her sexual decisions.

I have had my fair share of sexual partners, but always use protection.  I enjoy sex, and I am not ashamed to say so.  I have been called a “slut” more by women, than I have been by men.-Johanna, 27

4.  Stop body shaming.

It’s bad enough we have to hear it from guys.  Women have the power to change this, but for some reason we brutally scrutinize other women’s bodies.  Body shaming other females is more mentally damaging than you think.

I went to join a sorority my Freshman year at the University I attended.  We had to do the cliche “rush.” One night the sorority sisters lined us up in our bathing suits, and used a marker to circle the areas of our body they found unflattering.  I went home to see myself in the mirror covered in marker with words like PIG! FAT! UGLY!  I dropped out a week later.-Alison, 24

5.  Start embracing, and stop competing.

Being a woman is not a sport, and girlfriends are not suppose to be enemies.  We are all different, and bring something different to the table.  If you feel insecure around other women, look inside yourself to find the root of the problem.

My best friend is a supermodel, but she has always empowered me.  We go shopping, and she dresses me up when we go out.  We did not compete, we built each other up.  She is a major part of the reason why I am so confident today. Kara, 25

6.  Her style may not be your style accept it.

She is not “white trash” because she has tattoos, and she is not a “snot” because she wears Lilly Pulitzer.  Instead of calling her blue hair “weird,” call it “eccentric.”  Let’s embrace our differences, and respect each others style.

I came from a Conservative home, and my best friend was a wild child from Boston.  Her style was totally different, she had tattoos, talked about sex and everything in-between.  At first I bashed her.  Then one night, we drank wine, and I opened up to her about everything.  She was my Maid of Honor at my wedding.-Catherine, 28

 

 

7 Things You Realize When You Do The Unexpected

As I was walking along Coronado Beach, I could hear the loud sounds of the fighter jets whizzing by my head.  I looked around and realized how quiet the people were around me.  I heard another jet coming.  I climbed to the top of a rock overlooking the beach, threw my arms to wave and blew kisses towards the pilot as if I was Marilyn Monroe in “Some Like It Hot.”  Suddenly the jet waved it’s wings, and increased speed.  You could hear the loud engine roar.  Smiles, laughs and claps came from the crowd.  Those who were seen rolling their eyes were merely bystanders to life, while I was actually living it.  An unexpected moment, that turned into an everlasting memory.-Halfway2hannah

Its about being open about who you are, and allowing yourself to experience life on your terms.  These are 7 things you realize when you do the unexpected…

1.  People will judge you no matter what you do.

Tatted or not, people will judge you.  Wealthy or poor, people will judge you.  Skinny or overweight, people will judge you.  Regardless of how you look, behave or speak people will judge you.  So why not be judged for living the life you want and doing the unexpected?

2.  You are living, while others are just existing.

They may roll their eyes at you, but inside they admire your vibrance.  People who live their life without the approval of others inspire those around them.  They are the electric shock that bring some back to life, including themselves.

 3.  You are making unique memories when you do the unexpected.

These moments turn into stories that are told throughout your life and beyond.  You will not remember how many people were watching or the things that were said about you.  All you will remember is how you felt.

4.  Living life by someone else’s rules dampen’s your spirit.

Day by day, year by year, playing by others guidelines, and not your own, will make you bitter.  Trying to satisfy society’s standards is exhausting, and weighs heavy as time goes on.

5.  You miss out on genuine love & friendships when you play by other peoples rules.

Whether it be to open your eyes up to love, or the world around you, people you meet along the road are of significant value.  The best lovers and friends are the ones who come into your life unexpectedly.  Embrace it.

 6.  You see who your friends really are.

When you do the unexpected, even if just for a brief moment, you learn a lot about yourself and those around you.  The people who will support you even if they do not agree with your actions are the ones to keep around for the long run.

7.  Living life outside the box builds you as an individual.

Whether you succeed or fail, you learn lessons that cannot be taught in the classroom or at your job.  You get a chance to experience life on your terms. It is a wake up call to those around you who have power over your decisions.