One Lovely Blog Award!


lovely-blog-award-1Indeed, it never rains but it pours!

For me, receiving yet another blog award barely a month after the last one, signifies a pour in of appreciation and support for my modest and humble self. This new one is is as lovely as it’s name and l was nominated by none other than my ‘shaggy’ friend Somnolent Soul! You are a gentle soul indeed, so hold on, much better is on its way! Thank you for nominating me!

The rules for this award are the following:

1. Thank the person nominating you and link back to them in your post

2. Share seven things about yourself

3. Nominate fifteen or so bloggers you admire

4. Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know

Now, seven things about myself? Of course l will start with the ‘newest’ addition to my ‘feathers’:

  1. Woah, in a month from now, l will be meeting a psychiatrist for my first time. l am excited, scared and you name the rest. Check out my recent post on mental health and my story;
  2. l am just coming back from Africa (three countries in all there) and it was not only an emotionally packed journey, but it was one in which l once more learnt of some things we do take for granted?
  3. l am contemplating huge projects once l graduate and this includes full blow mental health Advocacy and am just hoping l cope. My brother’s and my case, leave me in no doubt that l can make a change;
  4. l am equally aspiring to become a personal and emotional well being coach.  l am optimistic that l will be knowing what l am talking about because l have been to that bottom and am now thriving somewhere above;
  5. l wrote my personal thriller of a life’s tale, and yes, although it was a tale of  unconventional loves it was well received;
  6. l was interviewed by our Cameroonian Oprah and am soon to do a post about her; l so wish her well and l know she will say she can’t ever be Ms O, sure but she will surely get to that category if she keeps up the good but hard job;
  7. l have learnt so much since l started blogging last November 2013, l can’t ever be grateful enough – my inspiration and determination are on high gear!

Now to nominate 15 or so bloggers, l will do my part and hope they accept the award or at least acknowledge my gesture:

  1. Dr H & J, over at the Bipolar Bum – he’s one brave but suffering soul and he helped me look critically at the mirror once more;
  2. Silent Dugood and her great poems;
  3. Vincent Egorro and his Inspirational and Motivational Blog;
  4. Marjma2014 whose cute blog has that variety is the spice of life scent;
  5. Adoptingjames, l so wish them well in the life with these additions to their family and their adjustments and coping with all it entails;
  6. Nicolemoncada and her soulful bipolar tapestry of poetic thoughts, words and acts?;
  7. Celia Hales and her cool blog on Miracles Each day, reminding me of Ms W Houston’s song ‘… there can be miracles when u believe …’;
  8. My dearest June over at Miraculous Ladies;
  9. My dear folakemiodoaje and her various musings especially on her beloved Mother Land;
  10. Lady K and her daily musings – her recent post on her never ending quest for perfection really caught my attention;
  11. Phoenix Aria and her candid posts on various issues esp regarding child abuse;
  12. RedneckRosarian and his love and care for roses, and all he teaches us there along;
  13. buildingalifeofhope just as the title says;
  14. Zachary @zacharykreid and his short uplifting messages; and last but not the least,
  15. Dennis Cardiff my good friend who recently published a souls searching book on conversations with the homeless!

Dear gentle followers and readers of mine, there sure are several other fabulous blogs out there and l just hope those l nominated, wouldn’t be mad at me for passing on such ‘work’ to them!

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Mental Health in Africa: My Story


It's time to talk
It’s time to talk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dear readers and followers, it is time to talk more seriously about mental health. Not only are statistics glaring of an increase in the number of patients and the failure of ‘society’ as a whole to tackle mental health issues, but ‘we’ the patients, are so scared of the stigma attached to our ‘diagnosis’, that we prefer to just shut up and ‘die’ out our own way!

l won’ talk about facts and statistics the world over or even only in Africa. No, l will speak from experience. Mine and what l observed, drawing from my brother’s and others’. l was therefore honored to receive an invitation by Trish over at Mentalhealthtalk, to do a guest post on this ‘salient and silent subject’. Kindly hop over to read the rest of that post with just one click right here: Sure, your comments will be highly appreciated.

Real facts and figures?
Real facts and figures?

l don’t know how real those facts and figures are of if they apply to Africa. l only know what l have experienced as a ‘patient’ and a ‘caregiver’.

l want to be the change, l think the time is now:

Be the Change
Be the Change

Fortunately, we have a lot of resources online to help us in our research in finding ways to avoid or cope with mental illness. l thus found this info graphics5-Cs-diagram-0011 worth sharing:

And this one is even more descriptive of the ways we can help ourselves and others l hope:

Ways to wellbeing
Ways to wellbeing

 l envy all those organized social services out here and all the helplines at your disposal or the insurance you could take out to help with costs and all.

mental-health-conversation-top-tips

My personal relationships are changing from now on; and l remember a recent post l just did where l expressed my determination to bounce back into life firmer.

We too can make a difference in someone’s  life, after helping our own selves out of course!

Dear gentle readers and followers, let’s not relent our efforts to make our lives and our worlds a better place, or what says thou?

Coming back a little firmer!


Aiming for success via firmness

a-successful-woman

Hi dearest gentle readers and followers, l would be lying if l don’t admit how much l missed you and my therapeutic writing world. Well, the good news is, l coming back a little firmer. l am yet to settle down sort of because we leave on monday for a real two week vacation, but at least there will be steady wifi there unlike back in Cameroon from where l had the lone chance to blog about things we take for granted?

Now to this post, a little firmer?

What can this possibly mean? Wasn’t l already that firm, firm, firm in what l was doing etc? Emm, not really l must admit. The blog break, gave me some time to think about several things and to make up my mind further on how l hoped to proceed with my blogging and much more. Hence, l thought of the heading of this post and l started by looking up the word firmer. Here is what l got:

This is my choice
This is my choice

firm

adjective, firm·er, firm·est.

1. not soft or yielding when pressed; comparatively solid, hard, stiff, or rigid: firm ground; firm texture.
2. securely fixed in place.
3. not shaking or trembling; steady: a firm voice.
4. not likely to change; fixed; settled; unalterable: a firm belief.
5. steadfast or unwavering, as persons or principles: firm friends.
How Firmer will that be?
l keep being grateful for all what l learn in life, big among which is the realization that l am probably a mental health ‘candidate’. l anxiously await my diagnosis come my consultation in August. This will probably explain the depressions, mood swings, irrational behaviour and much more. lt will equally explain the hyper sensitivity, super energy, fearless courage, unconventional loves and all.
Yes, l am looking forward to that diagnosis for l believe in knowing it sooner than later, and sure not while in a psychiatric ward right? l have a brother’s journey to teach me some and it is actually my unconditional love for this lone brother of mine that got me interested in ‘mental health’, leading to the revelation that l must surely be an undiagnosed ‘patient’. This is a tough admission and feat right? Firmer we can say!
What about the dictionary definition above?
Let me look at it closely; l am not soft or yielding when pressed except it may be logically peaceful to do given the circumstance. However, l am not securely fixed to any place. Sincerely, l only feel securely fixed to my own self and my Darling Darling’s love. Even the later may waver someday, l hope not but for now, his has become my home. My kids are mine, but mothering from across the ocean doesn’t guarantee any security of my place in their hearts and l wouldn’t deceive myself otherwise. l can only be firmer in my hope that my boys and l will cross this ‘desert’ together and that l really wouldn’t give up or break down in the process, nor will any of them.
Do l shake or tremble?
Hmm, good one right? l admit to shaking and trembling in private. Often within me but because l want to appear firmer, l have long learnt how not show how vulnerable l was or felt. l mean only until l published that bombshell of a personal thriller. The numerous TV and radio interviews l did back home revealed alot of the ‘other’ me, and also left my ‘audience’ in awe. Well, l am firmer in the realization that l am not a super woman and not depression, moody, mental illness and all immune.
Steadfast or Unwavering?
Waiting for my return flight on monday, 3 am!
Waiting for my return flight on monday, 3 am!
l love this most. Not because l am convinced of my steadfastdness and all, but because l know l am firm and oh firmer in my pursuit thereof. To me, that is the true measure of a human being. l owe it to none but myself. l am not prepared to let anything or anyone stop me in that pursuit or take whatever little of that l already have away.
Today, l once more learnt of a mistake in my contract, this time my fault, but it is too late to fix it and useless to cry over spilled milk. l am firmer than that. This episode once more reminds me that we each have that power in us to decide how much we want to be ‘rocked’ by any episode in our life. Some will sure get us to know no rest until we ‘splash’ it out, but we could also ‘fix’ ourselves up once that wind or storm or whatever comes by, is past. They all sure will, we just have to believe that and stick to that believe in all firmness.
Finally, l am most gratefull for my few ‘friends like June’ and my entire ‘e-family’. I mean, those who have ‘read my book or blog’ and don’t think l am ‘thrash’. ln the end, l can’t really tell though, just glad l can call them ‘friends’ until proven otherwise.
 Dear gentle readers and followers of mine, l hope you make something out of this post and that it helps somehow. l am hoping to regain my blogging regularity but l can only make promises as from August. For now, we take it as it comes and sure all comments are welcome. Even just a like does wonders right?

Curbing Bipolar Overreactions


Woah, l am learning so much each day, and in the process, understanding my own self better each day. Yes, ignorance is terrible, just as disgustful as the disease. Thx Payaak for spotting and reblogging this.

bi[polar] curious

When it comes to bipolar disorder, it can be hard to discern which type of mood episode is more harmful in any given situation; the moods that pop up sporadically without warning or the big overreactions that can happen in response to a stressful situation.

I think for most people, understanding that bipolar disorder includes un-triggered mood episodes outside of our control is simple enough to attribute to the disorder itself.

But what about overreactions? These big mood flare ups have often been a bigger source of trouble for me when it has come to my relationships with other people, because it can become easy for others to write these actions off to “a dramatic personality”. It can be difficult for people to separate a mood disorder from what our culture has been putting on a pedestal (via reality television); the drama queen.

For this reason, it has become important…

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Enjoy the Small Stuff.


quickmeups - short uplifting messages.

There’s a very popular book that was first published in 1997 called “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff… and it’s all small stuff”. While I absolutely agree, let’s not stress about the small problems and issues in life, I also think we can look at it from the other side and find the fun / beauty in the small things in our world. Enjoy the Small Stuff.

Enjoy the Small Stuff, Green Light, Small Things are to be Enjoyed. A green light is a small thing, but let’s enjoy it. Photo: Geralt

“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.” – Mother Teresa

Experience is subjective. To somebody that gets in their car every single day to sit in traffic on their way to work, being in a car is not a novelty, and many times not even enjoyable. To a child that’s never been inside of a car, it may be the eye-opening experience of a…

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Some things we take for granted?


Dear all, thanks to the awful internet connection in this part of the world l find myself, l haven’t blogged for maybe two weeks? Woah, somethings we take for granted?

Well, thanks to insomnia, l decided to try blogging from my phone instead of just staring at the ceiling since being finally up at 1am. Sleep has really hardly been a friend. Just when l think l am starting to ‘sleep’, the disorder sets in and the pattern is back to haphazard. Do l take it for granted sometimes?

Before l left for Belgium, l was like maybe several back home, not internet oriented. I didn’t know nor care to learn about twitter, blogging, LinkedIn and you name them. Maybe out of reflex or the several puddles l faced back then?

Now, l came and discovered social media, it also discovered me. We so loved each other and declared our love in a book. Hmm, it was so good to be true. The high speed and wonderful e-family and all? Maybe l started taking all that for granted?

l am afraid to write much more for l may mistakenly touch something and l loose all what l have written.

I just want to thank you all for l truly miss my e-family. Not being able to read your great posts, hurts. Not being able to regularly schedule posts, hurts much more.

I salute all those in this corner of the planet who brave it to feed us with content ever so faithfully. I think of Vincent Egoro and several others l just can’t name all.

Till then, thus goes life. Hmm, say what a post with no images, links and all? Somethings indeed we take for granted?

 

 

The Emotional Freedom Technique – An Improvement of Emotional Wellbeing Through Tapping


I am passionate about emotional wellbeing and really look and work towards becoming a personal and emotional wellbeing coach. I have been deep down there, rubbed my bottom thorough, and am now slowly rising and thriving. I have tried talk and writing therapy as well as exercise and they work marvels.ay we having an issue or the other, find some strength in what remains.

Alliance Counseling Center Blog

By Ilissa Ducoat, MA, CT

 

Throughout my training as a counselor and other healing-based modalities, I am continually reminded of the connection between the mind and the body and its effects on emotional wellness. How often are we in the middle of stressful times, and can name at least seven different ways our bodies are being directly effected by our stress levels? Or vice versa? Chronic pain and/or physical ailments make an impact on our emotional health as well.

 

Last year, I had the privilege of attending a workshop that focused on The Emotional Freedom Technique, also known as EFT. This technique is often explained as psychological acupressure, following the same meridians used during acupuncture, but uses the client’s fingertips as the tool that eliminates emotional blockages instead of needles. We learned and practiced this method over an intensive three-day weekend, during which the instructor said this method…

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Writing: My therapy and message!


Writing as theraphy
Writing as theraphy

Last week, my dear friend Michelle with the lovely title of writer in transit, (I also love adding that she has babbling books), and  who is an able admin over at the Insecure Writers’ Support Group, tagged me in a post on a blog hop about the writing process. This week, is not only pay back time but is above all, write on time.

My writing process or journey if l may use this word, is one where l chose to combine therapy and message. Maybe l am inventing this term but so be it – writotheraphy has been a life line of mine since childhood. When you have had the kind of difficult childhood, parenthood and mental-hood and other ‘hoods’  like l have, writing in journals, blogging and publishing a book, all help your coping mechanisms.

So here are the four questions l will attempt answers to before l pass on the ‘baton’ on this hop:

What am I working on/writing?

I have two blogs: This one and it’s brother over at Blogger.

They are both 7 and 3 months old respectively. The toddler which l created last March for the noble April A to Z challenge, I called it My everydaypersonal blog. l am however sorry for that blog given that l really shouldn’t have christened it so. l now find it a little  misleading. The last time I dropped a post there was maybe …?

I am more faithful to this blog which bears my name and where l write on my thrilling life, emotions and journey with a yet to be diagnosed mental illness and all.

I published the first of my memoirs last March and countdown deals are scheduled for soon. It is an unconventional book, not for the faint of heart, l must confess. I am also a devoted contributor of the Divorce Magazine, where my stories of a Twin Divorce and much more, only leave me all the more on ‘display’.

How does my work/writing differ from others in its genre?

Hmm, good question. My answer is simple. It may not be so different, but it is my story or rather stories? No ‘conventions’ being followed, no reservations made and no line drawn between my ‘personal’ (whatever it really means l really don’t know anymore) and ‘public’ life.

I am happy to be writing from my heart and talking about my challenges this freely especially my challenges with ‘mental illness’ and my search for a diagnosis. I recently wrote a post on being convinced something was wrong with me and l cant wait to finally see a psychiatrist.

Why do I write what I do?

Write life therapy
Write life therapy

Therapy and Message as titled. Simply put,  l want people to know how different perception can be from reality. l want to join the few bold ones in stigmatizing the stigma of ‘mental illness’ and to maybe even start wondering if they too did not have ‘a problem’. l am working on becoming a regular contributor on mental health talk.

Gosh, if l never wrote about all what l have so far been writing, most people who think the know me, wouldn’t believe if someone else told them. Many lives could be saved from suicide if only we cared a little bit more, tolerated a little bit more, understood a little bit more and sure, loved a little bit more.

I leave you to ponder more with these two quotes:

“Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self” – Cyril Connolly

“You don’t write because you want to say something; you write because you’ve got something to say” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

How does my writing process work?

Since l write about me most of the time, the memories or current events inspire my work. I also write about my heroines and heros and l have sort of a mental list especially of my everyday heroines and heros who range from my kind and gentle hairdresser from Senegal, to my dearest June from Jamaica, of course starting with my first and best – my mother.

So, now to passing the ‘baton’; I have just two friends who agreed to join my wagon. One is none other than my all year summer friend. June my Jamaican friend and heroine:

June for profileJune Whittle is a freelance copywriter and blogger. She has two personal blogs and a website that she manages and writes for. She also enjoys writing poems and short stories. She is working on her first fiction novel and eBook. She’s passionate about sharing knowledge, helping businesses grow and using her blogging skills to assist bloggers in educating their audiences.  She uses her blogs as a platform to inspire others.

June can be reached via the contact pages at Divine Copywriter and Miraculous Ladies.

The second is a cool guy who had the gentleness to nominate me for the very inspiring blogger award.

My dearest friend Dr H&J
My dearest friend Dr H&J

H&J is a twenty seven year old man from Yorkshire in the U.K who left his job and life in early 2013 in search of something better.  What he found, among new friends in Australia that December, was a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder and finally his unusual life started to make sense.  Initially resistant to his diagnosis, then to treatment, H&J is now medicated and re-learning how to think and live with his illness.  He is the author of The Bipolar Bum (www.thebipolarbum.com) a blog about living and travelling with Bipolar Disorder and the founder of the Skype Support Initiative (http://skypesupportinitiative.wordpress.com/), a peer to peer support network.  He is currently in Tropical Far North Queensland, Australia.

They will post on the 24/25 and will in usual style, share summer roses and more, while answering those four questions l just did above.

Dear gentle readers and followers of mine, what says thou? Your every click counts!

Wow: I am going to my see my Boys!


August 2012, the young men with their commander.
August 2012, the young men with their commander.

I am so full of joy, I am still learning how to deal with my great emotions. Woah, after a year and a half, I am going to see my Boys.

I don’t have much to say because many would never understand how a mother in her right senses can leave her children behind in the same ‘shit’ she was running away from. Suffice it to say l wasn’t in my ‘right senses’ then.

My Boys and l  have all been through so much.The poor internet connections, high phone costs and much more, got us to often get in touch only once a week or less. Talk of motherhood across the ocean?

That aside, here is a video l did for a presentation in my school on global cultures. Have fun and know that for the next three weeks, I will crisscross as much of my beautiful motherland as possible. Of course, there is no doubt that my “3 mousquetaires” will be with me all through my stay home.

Hmm, l am taking them to at least one of the radio shows l am invited to, and maybe one of my TV Interviews too. The line up is pretty exciting for actually only two weeks with them, giving that 5 good days will be … at some summit in Kigali.

So, those weeks are all I have for now. However, someday, it shall surely be different. Anyway, as it currently stands, I am going HOME to see my BOYS and l even have some blogging awards to show them too!

Dear gentle readers and followers of mine, thank you in advance for the safe journey wishes and all. My Boys and I will sure do a post from home just for you!

My father doesn’t know me it seems!


This week is a mix of highs and lows. Anyway, I am happy because tomorrow… lets wait to see what happens right?

Today I write about my father. I have hardly mentioned him in my posts maybe other than that he tried in his own way to be my father?

It however seems he doesn’t know me

I don't know if he ever tried anyway
I don’t know if he ever tried anyway

l saw this caption somewhere and it made me think of my father. Our relationship is summarized in one of the first chapters of my book. Maybe rather one of my stations of my cross as l called the chapters?

I just keep thinking what would have happened if he knew not only me but any of his children? Maybe he didn’t even know his own self and still doesn’t?

When I told him just yesterday that I had almost committed suicide, he was simply put embarrassed. He has always avoided any thing related to ‘shame’, and cared so much about ‘success’, ‘status’ and bla.

father-daughter-dispute-conflict-25981515Parental Alienation

Maybe because my father never knew me or any of my siblings, he did not care about how his efforts to alienate us from our mum, was ruining us and our relationship with him.

I was maybe 12/13 when my parents divorced but I had seen it coming despite their efforts in trying to hide their sustained disaccord.

When it happened, although I had heard of stories where mostly the Fathers alienated the Kids from their mothers, I did not expect my own father (who to me was a ‘refined’ man), to try keeping us away from our mum. It was simply terrible.

The more he made negative comments, corroborated by his ‘friends and family’, the more we longed for our mum. I knew what he was trying to do and he did not care to see what it was actually doing to us.

Parental Alienation to me at the time simply meant daddy did not want us to see our mother.

I was so hurt and I could understand why at some point my mother stopped trying to come by our house. It was so sad to see her insulted as she stood for hours in front of the gate while we were locked up in our rooms. She wasn’t any danger to us, and I told my siblings we could not hate our mother no matter how our father tried.

Yes, he got custody in court thanks to his money and power back at the time, and refused to respect the limited visitation rights accorded her.

Through sheer determination and continued demands from my siblings and I,  we eventually went to live with our mother again.  It was easier for my two sisters because the first was an adult and she just upped and left one day.  My kid sister was “saved” by ill health.   She was so unwell that the doctors advised she live with our mother. It is probably the trauma of that in between period and much more that followed that affects my brother and I so much that we each suffer from some form of ‘mental illness’ or the other.

The entire article l wrote on this is up over at the Divorce Magazine where l am a regular contributor. You could read it all by simply clicking here.

In conclusion

I have nothing really to add other than that my father really doesn’t seem to know or care – maybe he does?

Yesterday once more, I called him to plead with him to call my brother who is actually having a ‘minor’ crisis. l hear it is not ‘manic’ so l use the term ‘minor’ maybe out of consolation? So l talk to or with him and as usual, l have to approach it in a no nonsense tone because my father can silence you with a mere cough or stare. Even over the phone you can feel it.

He tries to shun me off and or change the topic and l get more frustrated. Indeed l feel sorry for my mother who got married to him, coped with him for 14 years, and now has two children to worry about their mental health. I sincerely think, if only my father had tried a little bit more to me us, maybe things could have been different?

Dear gentle readers and followers of mine, what says thou?

mum, author, mental health advocate, therapist, inspires & motivates with personal experiences

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