Laughs of our Nightlife!

Hubby and I were delivering newspapers last night. He was delivering my Carbondale Route and I was delivering my other route in Snowmass. We were feeling chatty so spent most of our night on the phone visiting. We both utilize blue tooth devices, which brings a mixture of technology and comedy into our lives.
Through the years with our blue tooth ear pieces we have seen so many people who have no idea what they are to believing we are talking to ourselves. Last night as my hubby pulled into a store in the Willits area a man approached him and said (not actual quotes, just the best I can recall) Hey, you can help me! My hubby said No, I don’t think so. This man says, SHHHH, Just listen to ME. I am with the _____ ______ Club (leaving them unnamed to save embarrassment) and I was with my crazy friend, ____ you know- he has a crazy beard and the blonde. Our car is on one of those streets and you can drive me to find it. We will know it when we find the blonde in it.
Hubby pointed out to this intoxicated man that his car was completely full with newspapers and he was working. The man said, SHHHH Just Listen to ME. It’s okay- you can drive me on the streets to find my car, then it will all be OK. Hubby said I don’t think so. He drove away to the next delivery spot.
I laughed and laughed as hubby repeated the conversation. Why is it when people get intoxicated they almost always say…. No, really,,, SSHHHHH Listen to what I am saying…… We’ve seen this scenario many times since we are working at the hours that bars close and parties getting over. And while we are out here working why would we want you driving that car that you are so drunk you lost it?? I feel so much safer with you as a pedestrian, honestly!

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End the Shame of Mental Illness

I have suffered with mental illness most of my adult life. I currently am doing quite well and it is because of some GREAT counseling help that I received.
I personally refused professional help or even seeking professional help for decades because I believed I was crazy. In my ‘schema’ of being crazy I was afraid that I would be put into a rubber room and never released. So I fought thru the depression, mood swings alone. Or so I thought. In reality my family walked thru every one of those minutes, days, weeks, months with me trying to fix everything so I would be okay. My children, my husband and my Savior.
I wish I could have known that counseling and taking anti-depressants would be so easy and healing.
I wish I could have been given a sneak peak at the reality of mental illness counseling, instead of living with false fears.
So I am including some of the worksheets that my counselor utilized throughout about 18 months of us meeting. I took anti-depressants for the first 6 months and then finished the last 12 months without them. We started meeting once a week and as I became more stable the appointments graduated to once a month. Then one time Jenna said how would you feel if we entered into the termination phase of counseling? I said I don’t know- I thought I was doing pretty good-you want to kill me? She knew I was joking and explained that we would wrap up the loose ends and make sure I had the tools I needed for life without counseling. It goes without saying I can always go back to counseling, but so far I have not needed to. I have had some rough spots- I will not sugar coat or hide that at times I feel that depression is barely surpressed and ready to spring up and take over again. But I sit down with the journal book I made and recall the tools and tricks that Jenna taught me. So far I have not spiraled downward out of control since I ‘graduated’ from mental illness counseling.
My hope is that my struggle helps someone else struggle less. My hope is that anyone thinking of suicide calls for help. People really do want to help! They don’t want to make it worse. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline ‘1-800-273-TALK (8255)’
You can talk to your personal doctor. You can talk to your family-they already know.

You can call, email, Facebook or text me. I am not a counselor. I can give you honest answers about my depression and honest input of how counseling helped me, as well as what I did not like about it. It was not a bed of roses. It was tough to face my fears but it was easier than what I was torturing myself with.
Too many people hide because of their mental illness. They are ashamed and don’t want anyone else to know. Help me end the shame! I was never ashamed of catching the flu. I was not at fault for mental illness. No it is not contagious, but you can pass it to your children. My mother had depression and it was the only way I knew to live.
I also recognize that I passed a lot of the same issues onto my daughters. I have shared these worksheets with each of them. I have discussed this over and over in hopes of them grasping the good and throwing out the bad influences.

Depressionworksheets

Depressionworksheets1

The last page is too dark to read except the business card of my counselor so the following is what the dark part states:
What is Depression?
1. Severe despondency and dejection, typically felt over a period of time and accompanied by feelings of hopelessness and inadequacy.
2. The act of lowering something or pressing something down.

What is Clinical Depression or Major Depressive Disorder:
A condition of mental disturbance characterized by depression to a greater degree than seems warranted by the external circumstances, typically with lack of energy and difficulty in maintaining concentration or interest in life.

What are the SIGNS?
-Exhibiting a very low mood, or inability to experience pleasure in activities formally enjoyed.
-Overwhelmed with thoughts of worthlessness, inappropriate guilt, helplessness, hopelessness or self-hatred.
-Poor concentration and poor memory.
-Withdraw from social situations and activities.
-Lack of sex drive
-Inability to get out of bed, or suffering from insomnia
-In some cases delusion, or hallucinations.
-Thoughts of death or suicide.
How long does depression last?
-The median duration is 23 weeks. Although if untreated it may go on longer.
Do I have to take anti-depressants?
-NO! Though they can jumpstart your recovery, there are many different ways to treat your depression! Including but not limited to counseling and or therapy!!

If you know someone suffering from depression the only thing you can do is offer tools, time and encouragement. Help by finding local therapists, and only suggest these things in an endearing, compassionate, positive way, depression is not a joke, it is not something to ignore, it is an imbalance that must be addressed and corrected to ensure everyone can enjoy life to the fullest!

Customer Service and what it isn’t

I have recently began shipping medical labs through the airlines. When I was waiting my turn in line on Thursday for the clerk who was trained and knew how to accept this package, she approached from behind me and said very loudly, I am not doing it tonight!
This was after the two clerks behind the counter had already thrown their hands up in frustration at this request. While I realize that the corporate office of the airlines has made this a difficult task for these clerks I was offended that they attempted to push their stress onto me.
I kept seeking grace from God so that I could pour grace out onto each of them. It took 45 minutes to get this box through all of the hoops, which was a vast improvement over the previous week. It took 1 hour and 15 minutes to do it the first time.
This reminded me of another similar experience I had at the Post Office years ago. It didn’t matter what Post Office I went the lines were long and the workers less than efficient. They were not pleasant and obviously did not like their job. I was not actively searching for grace back then.
What a difference seeking grace makes! I still hesitate before I walk into a Post Office. I know that the problems have been worked out and the clerks are pleasant, but it still is fresh in my memory of how poorly I had been treated.
By seeking grace and pouring it out the offensive behavior of the airline clerks has not stuck to me. I will walk in there with a smile on my face and Jesus shining through me next week. I pray before long with the help of Jesus they will welcome us to the counter! I am so grateful that my Savior always welcomes me. Whether I have done well or poorly, He is always with me. His kindness and love are life changing. I pray I will always seeks His grace in every uncomfortable situation. His grace is sufficient for EVERYTHING I need.
Remember always we don’t know what battles others are fighting. At times those battles cause them to spew unkind words and poor customer service. Spend time with God- fill yourself up with His grace so that you may give others grace. The only way I can shine for Jesus is to respond the way He would in situations that are not necessarily ones I would chose to go through. I might be the only disciple that those clerks ever see, it is imperative to shine with grace through this. I thank God for supplying all the grace I need to do this.
When have you spread grace recently? How did it improve the situation? Please share your experiences.