11.30.19- Brave.

A detour from the usual, “I did this, we did that” for something weighing heavy on my heart. With permission, I am sharing a story that I hope makes an impact on you like it did on me.

If you’re anything like me, you have a list of things to do, and a list of good intentions. My to-do list is things like, fold the laundry, go to the grocery store, get pencils & wide ruled notebooks; and my list of good intentions is things like, drop a card in the mail for grandma, reach out to old friends, plan a girls night. More often than not, the things on my to-do list get scratched off and more get added on, so that list of good intentions stays, well, stays intentions. I try my best to take time for those things but so often, it’s hard to just keep up with being a busy woman. (Excuses, I know)…

The whole point of this post, and I will get there soon, (I swear), is to take time for those good intentions, make them good actions because they matter. They do.

I met this friend years ago, volunteering with the Assistance League in my hometown. Her smile was SO bright & in tow was always her mother, with the same bright smile. Our organization ran a thrift store, and our specific chapter volunteered as cashiers on Saturday’s. It was always my favorite to work with these two, as most of the other volunteers were borderline fossils.

Fast forward to present day, we live a few hours apart. We’ve stayed connected via Facebook, instagram and the social avenues, but it’s crazy how we can be so connected but so out of touch. She shared a post last week, and it moved me to tears. A post I never saw coming.

I’ll start by saying the transparency in this post is what I value most. She is real and raw and I am confident her story will save others. My hope in sharing it here is that I can help widen the impact. Without further ado, the most moving mental health post I’ve read.

{This is not my story, but is shared with permission} Here is the back story: “On Wednesday night I overdosed on a sleeping pill called ambien… [Throughout Wednesday I took 15 pills and thankfully my roommate caught me before I could take anymore. I was admitted into the hospital that night, then on Thursday morning into a psychiatric hospital.]” And, “I have tried to fathom words to describe my long and bitter 2 nights and 3 days inside the walls of a modern U.S. psych ward. A part of me feels I cannot reasonably describe my experience there because it was too stressful and painful, that my brain has mentally blocked them from my memories. While I was there I have never felt so neglected or astray from what life is. All I can say is that if you have never had to have the real life experience of these places- you are lucky, psych wards are real life hell. Mental health research has a long way to go before we can find more equitable solutions for those who live with mental illness of any kind.”

Her post ends, “Asking for help is okay, crying is okay, and your feelings are valid. And if you feel like you haven’t been heard lately, I will listen. I am strong, you are strong, and together we are stronger. Metal health is a constant battle and I am fighting it . If you aren’t fighting it, chances are someone you know is. We’ve got to open up to each other and be honest, life is too long not to enjoy the time you have.”

And I couldn’t agree more. Talking about your struggles & sharing your story is SO powerful. I was so compelled to share this and to share the message that it is okay to hurt, it is okay to struggle, and it is okay to ask for help.

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