“happy” world mental health day

No matter who is “most likely” to suffer, we’re all affected.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness:

-A mental illness is a medical condition that disrupts a person’s thinking, feeling, mood, ability to relate to others and daily functioning. Just as diabetes is a disorder of the pancreas, mental illnesses are medical conditions that often result in a diminished capacity for coping with the ordinary demands of life.
-Mental illnesses can affect persons of any age, race, religion or income. Mental illnesses are not the result of personal weakness, lack of character or poor upbringing. Mental illnesses are treatable. Most people diagnosed with a serious mental illness can experience relief from their symptoms by actively participating in an individual treatment plan.
-During the first full week of October, NAMI and participants across the country are bringing awareness to mental illness. Each year we fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for equal care. Each year, the movement grows stronger.

 

I wouldn’t dare deny the truth in the above statements.  Nothing I’m about to say here is meant to diminish the significance of the condition, to deny the need for medication, or to boil it all down to some woo woo “just meditate and open your heart” mantra….. but I guess maybe because of the general lack of holistic perspective used to treat medical conditions by traditional medical professionals, the above definition of mental illness strikes me as kind of surfacey or too clinical or… something.

It’s my understanding that at it’s core this medical condition, these mental illnesses, are mental imbalances born out of our dis-ease at being in the body, in the world.  We’re born free and wide open, and then life starts to happen. And it keeps on happening. In one way or another, by major traumas or minor incidents, our authentic self is misunderstood or rejected or betrayed, and we create defense mechanisms to protect us from again feeling unloved, unaccepted, unworthy, inferior.  When the authentic self (basically your heart) has been rejected or hurt in some way, it seems to be the natural human response to protect oneself from having that happen again.  So we may build walls around that self to keep the pain out, or become hyper vigilant- always on the lookout for the red flags that danger is imminent then planning escape routes or attack plans.  These become our patterns.  They’re the operating system running the whole program.  And because our society teaches us to look without for relief, for fulfillment and love and peace and joy, our chances of looking within to identify the dysfunction and then consciously choose to upgrade to the operating system effortlessly running the preferred programs are slim.

These imbalances may be great or small, but I believe we all have them to a certain extent.  I don’t think anyone is impervious to the precarious nature of the human condition.  It must be part of the journey, part of the point of it all. We’re individual expressions of the infinite intelligence of the universe.  We incarnate here and we forget that.  We believe that we are who we have been conditioned to become, separate from everything else.  All of the experiences laid before us we have chosen to help wake us up to remember our authentic self.  I guess that means that we choose the experiences that go into the forgetting, too.

unbecoming

Certainly, I digress.  I just mean to say that to a certain extent, we’ve all gotten out of alignment with who we really are, identifying instead with the mind and the chaotic thoughts swirling around it.  Since our thoughts influence our feelings and create our reality, this incongruence manifests with the imbalances in the mind affecting the ways in which we relate to ourselves and each other.  And that’s what it’s all about.  How we relate to ourselves and each other.  Which is really the same thing.  Ideally we’d have a balanced mind and an open heart to freely engage with both the world around and inside of us.

So be aware of your mental health.  Be aware of your self.  This special day is for mental health education, awareness and advocacy.  I am aware that I am prone to depression and anxiety.  Perhaps more so than your average bear.  I have taken medication, it wasn’t for me.  I am a big fan of therapy.   All I know for sure though is that the biggest relief has come through the act of allowing, loving…well, simply feeling the feelings.  They come and they go.  And no feeling ever killed me, even though I was scared to death it might.  That’s just it.  The fear of the feeling is deadly.  If you can courageously choose love over fear as the foundation to stand on as you feel the feeling… that’s when the magic happens.   I know this first hand.  And I have to remind myself daily.

It’s true that depression is just one of many on the list of mental illnesses, but it’s prevalent so this is relevant.

 

Depression is symptomatic of feeling isolated and cut off. In our drive to live the good life, we typically isolate ourselves from relationships that might nourish us.- Mel Schwartz Waking Times

mork calling orsen2

Orson: The report, Mork.
Mork: This week I discovered a terrible disease called loneliness.
Orson: Do many people on Earth suffer from this disease?
Mork: Oh yes sir, and how they suffer. One man I know suffers so much he has to take a medication called bourbon, even that doesn’t help very much because then he can hear paint dry.
Orson: Does bed rest help?
Mork: No because I’ve heard that sleeping alone is part of the problem. You see, Orson, loneliness is a disease of the spirit. People who have it think that no one cares about them.
Orson: Do you have any idea why?
Mork: Yes sir you can count on me. You see, when children are young, they’re told not to talk to strangers. When they go to school, they’re told not to talk to the person next to them. Finally when they’re very old, they’re told not to talk to themselves, who’s left?
Orson: Are you saying Earthlings make each other lonely?
Mork: No sir I’m saying just the opposite. They make themeslves lonely, they’re so busy looking out for number one that there’s not enough room for two.
Orson: It’s too bad everybody down there can’t get together and find a cure.
Mork: Here’s the paradox sir because if they did get together, they wouldn’t need one.

“Mork & Mindy: In Mork We Trust (#1.21)” (1979)

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most likely to suffer

I knew this, like on the inside of me, however reading it was profoundly gratifying.  Of course we are most likely to suffer…from many things.  You see, we’re not just invisible in the realm of public services and policy, but one could argue that we’re invisible everywhere we go.  Even at home to a certain extent.  Depending on circumstances of course.  And not only can we be misunderstood by teachers and health care professionals, we may very well be misunderstood by our parent(s), friends, and extended family.  Seeing as the truth of our experience has been ignored and denied, we’re also invisible in history.  Seeing yourself reflected back to you in a way that is congruent with your self-image is a “luxury” we are not often afforded.  And though there is no written rule on the subject, the feeling that our story is not valid and our voice is not wanted unless we surrender to societal expectations is palpable.

How about everybody just let us be and take us for who we say and show that we are?  Which means acknowledging, listening, hearing and imagining into some level of empathy.  Doesn’t seem like many people are interested in doing that.  Perhaps because if they did, the entire illusion would crumble.  Lots of identities are tightly wound in that illusion. So, then who would you all be?  You’d be like me.  Untethered from out-dated classifications and free to be whoever your heart tells you you are.  My heart has never mentioned race to me.  Has yours (to you)?

Mixed-race children ‘are being failed’ in treatment of mental health problems

The fastest growing ethnic group in Britain is still being treated as if it is only integrated into black culture, says report

mixie fairy b:w

Children of mixed race are at greater risk of suffering from mental health problems and are not getting the support they need, says a report.

Despite mixed-race children belonging to the fastest-growing ethnic group, the research, backed by the National Children’s Bureau, found that they faced “unrealistic” expectations from teachers and other adults who did not understand their backgrounds.

While mixed-race young people are over represented in the care, youth justice and child protection systems, the authors said they were “invisible” in public service practice and policy.

The report – Mixed Experiences – growing up mixed race: mental health and wellbeing – drew on several studies and interviews with 21 people about their experiences as children.

Co-author Dinah Morley was concerned at the lack of understanding over what it meant to be mixed race, a group most likely to suffer racism. “I was surprised at how much racism, from black and white people, had come their way,” she said. “A lot of children were seen as black when they might be being raised by a white single parent and had no understanding of the black culture. The default position for a child of mixed race is that they are black.”

The report found that those with mixed-race backgrounds were more at risk of mental health issues because of their struggle to develop an identity. Morley said the strongest common experience was the “too white to be black, too black to be white”.

The 2011 census showed that the mixed-race population was the fastest growing ethnic group in Britain, amounting to 2.2% of the population of England and Wales.

In 2012, research by the thinktank British Future found that prejudice towards mixed-race relationships was fading. The report, The Melting Pot Generation – How Britain Became More Relaxed About Race, talked about the “Jessica Ennis generation”, crediting the London Olympics 2012 athlete with changing attitudes towards mixed race. “That positive role model is also seen as something very important,” said Morley.

Jessica Ennis is a positive role model for people of mixed race

Jessica Ennis is a positive role model for people of mixed race Photograph: Shaun Botterill/Getty Image

no shame in crazy

 

crazy marliyn monroe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

crazy lyrics

 

“What does it mean to be crazy? To have a disorder of the mind. But “disorder” can only exist if there is some kind of pre determined “order” set in place. And who decides on order relative to the human mind? Human society. Sane and insane is a judgment based on perspective. And according to many other perspectives within this universe, it is human society that is rampant with disorder. So there is no reason to think of yourself as insane; if the very mindset of the society that determines whether you are sane or insane… is in and of itself insane!”
-Teal Scott-