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Thursday, January 21, 2016

Past but not forgotten.

From the very moment I first heard your voice, I knew you were someone I wanted in my life. A short time later we actually met in person. I felt so at ease and safe with you that I invited you in.

My world had become so isolated and painful. I struggled daily to just survive and exist. I believed my life was near its end. You reminded me that I was very much alive. We spent hours talking, laughing and hanging out.

You saved me. You returned color and warmth to my life. I started living again. I will always cherish the time we had together. Sometimes I wish I could go back to that place, back to the beginning. I do not know if I would do anything differently. I would probably just be glad to see you again. I miss you. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

I just exploded a pot of scarves and wool.. not a good day

Lately, I have felt the desire (finally) to dye a few things. I dyed some yarn up for a friend. I was so excited and happy to see it. The color is perfect, at least, I am pretty sure. I didn't even realize there was anything wrong until I was hanging the yarn to dry. It is a silk/merino mix, really quite lovely to work with.



I don't know what I did wrong. The yarn is only that beautiful color on the outside of the skeins. The inside is matted together. I mean its still totally usable but its not up to par. That was a real disappointment. I was trying to reskein it to see if I could recover it somehow when I heard a loud pop and bang.

I rushed to the kitchen to see a that I was trying to set some scarves and wool in had over heated. The pressure from the boiling shot the lid off. I have turned off the burner and removed the pot to let it cool, but I just feel fricken devastated. It just won't go right, and I don't know how to change it. 

Monday, October 26, 2015

Dear Diary, My new goals and hopes in life

I thought if I set goals my life would just move back to something more manageable. The thing is I started with goals that were too big for me to achieve. That only made me feel worse when I couldn't do what I had set out to do. So I crashed again. I drank too much, cried too much, and in general, stopped taking care of myself. I got really depressed again. 



This morning was a bit better, though. I decided to start over with smaller goals. I got the idea after reading that book on meditation. It reinforced some stuff I had learned years ago, but I had forgotten. The mind does not care the size of the goal, task or achievement. It really only understands if you were able to do it or not. Every time you are able to accomplish something your brain rewards you. You can get more confidence, feel better, and change your outlook on life.

The best way to do this is to set micro-goals. These are little tiny goals you can accomplish. As you are able to reach your goals, remember to reward yourself even with a simple I did it. You can increase your goals as you go along to give you something more to accomplish. I decided to keep my goals as simple as possible.

Johanna's Goals:

  • Complete 3 tasks a day
  • I will reward myself when I complete each task. 
  • I will start small & take pride in what I am able to accomplish.
Tasks I completed today:
  1. I woke up and cooked food for myself and my roommates.
  2. I took a shower and put on clean clothes.
  3. I made myself a cup of tea.
It may not seem like it but just doing those things and telling myself, "I did this" was a small boost to my self. I feel like I can do complete 3 tasks a day. When I am doing this regularly I will increase my goals until I am back to a place I feel comfortable in. I actually accomplished a few more things, like this blog, but I felt better just having my 3 tasks completed and seeing them in writing. 

To all those who struggle, try something small for yourself. Set your own mini goals. Keep hope alive. Remember you are never truly alone. Someone out there is always feeling like you and someone always cares. I may not always succeed in Life. There is always tomorrow and the Hope it brings with it for a fresh new start. 

Hugs, 
Johanna

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Meditation made easy!



Lately (or always it seems) my life has been stressful. I have been told more than once that I should meditate. When I was given the chance to review The Meditation Beginner's Bible by Tai Morello I took this as a sign. I was given a copy to read and then review honestly.

I enjoyed the book. I actually found myself using some of the techniques described in the book as I read. The chapters were easy to read and understand. I really liked how the information was broken down so simply. The benefits of meditation are presented in bullet form. Scientific studies were provided to give a more in-depth view of exactly how meditation works. 

Morello offers several methods of meditation. This is great for someone new to meditation as the options allow a person to choose the right method for themselves. I really felt like this book was written with love as it is clear the author truly wishes to make meditation accessible to everyone. The entire tone of the book is one of friendship and guidance to allow anyone to meditate. 

The only thing that did throw me off a bit was the title. At first I thought this book would be a guide on how to use the Bible as a meditation tool. The book is strictly a meditation book. I loved how myths were presented and busted. I loved the links to meditation tools. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in learning how to meditate to alleviate stress, anxiety, and pain. 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Setting goals and feeling better

Hello all,
As you may well know lately I have been suffering depression, anxiety, and nightmares. I have been under a lot of stress as well, I have found that reaching out to the community of online friends has helped. I have talked to more people online, and chatting on my phone. Little by little I am improving. I have set some small goals to try to achieve daily to help me pull myself up and out of this depression.



When I wake up in the morning, I usually turn on my kettle to make a cup of tea. The goals I have set are as follows. While the water is heating, I will put away the clean dishes from the dishwasher. After I have filled my cup while my tea is steeping, I will put on a load of clothes to be washed. My last goal for the morning is to blog while I drink my tea. These may seem like very small goals but for me it is difficult some mornings to even put the kettle on. That is why I have decided regardless of how I feel, I want to do these 3 goals each morning.

I hope that these goals once firmly established will help me start developing a routine of sorts. I plan on trying what is called 'Opposite Action' as one of my tools to lead a less depressed life. Opposite action basically means feeling one way, but 'Choosing' to do the thing you don't feel like doing, even if it is hard. Now don't start with a huge opposite action. You want your goals attainable. The mind sees each achievement as a success and feels encouraged, regardless of the size, a tiny achievement or a huge one weighs the same to your mind.

For that reason start off with small, tiny, baby steps. Build your confidence and courage slowly. Your depression will improve. This will not happen overnight, but you will start having better days if you do this. So go, have that cup of coffee with friends or see that ballgame. Do something outside of your home at least 1 time every week. You will start feeling better. This is my hope for myself and for you all.

Love & Hugs,
Johanna

Sunday, October 4, 2015

My life, my shame - Part 4 - potentially triggering[

What I post or write may be triggering. Please do not continue reading if you are afraid you may be triggered.

New post below:






I feel like I have talked in vague particularities. I think I am actually afraid to be as open and honest as I should be. I think at times I can only hit around the bush. My shame is deep and strong. I have decided to post a picture of my deepest shame. The thing that has kept me hidden away recently. It was only seen by my roommates and a few doctors for the most part. I was afraid if anyone knew the depth of my depression it would be the end. Stupid really to come from someone who thought the end was already here. Why am I putting it here, on a blog, in clear public scrutiny? Honestly, I finally talked about it with my sister Brandy. She told me I didn't have to be ashamed. I didn't have to hide. She said I could be a voice to help others like me. I didn't believe her, I have to be honest. But of the people I trust in my life, Brandy is one of them. I finally decided that if the words I can put on a blog can actually reach anyone, then maybe she is right.


This is my shame. This is why I hide these days. I don't want to see the judgement on anyone's face. I am afraid I can't stand up to it. This is what wakes me up in the middle of the night crying. This monstrosity is now a part of me. There is nothing I can do to deny it though I would if I had any way possible. I hate it. It brands me. It hurts. It really does. I wake up to the pain. My left hand is no longer as strong as it once was. I hate facing the truths. I disassociated during a time of deep stress and duress. While in this place I tried to end my life. The only reason that I am still here is for my roommates. They patched me up, took me to the doctor, stayed by my side. They did not give up on me even though I had. Without them, I would not be here today.

I post this because I don't want anyone to end up as I did, feeling alone, and with no options. There are options. There is life. Sometimes it is painful but if we just persist we can move on to a better place. Please know that as long as I have breath in my body I will be here for you, any of you, should you ever need a shoulder, a sounding board, a person to say you matter. I do not know you, but I promise you, I love you. I love you so that you no longer have to wonder if you are loved or if you are alone. I love you simply because you exist and deserve love. I will go on. I will not give up. I will not let you either. Exists with me if it is all you can do, but I wait for the day that you no longer exist but truly live. Those thoughts bring me joy. I have real joy in my life at the thought of people living and knowing there is someone out here who loves them regardless. I have real joy in knowing you will live even if it is hard just like I will. We have to. We can not quit. Too many people depend on us being here, even if we forget in our depression. We matter, all of us.

I may write more along this line but for now this is what needed to be said. Do not take the easy death. Take the hard path and live. Live for yourself, live for your loved ones, live in spite of those who would see you gone.. just Live.
Hugs & Love, Johanna