Clinically Acclaimed!

recovery Day X; depression strikes

mq1Step 1. Tell Someone;

Depression is no stranger to me. I know what it looks like, how it changes my attitude and behaviour. And I know that when it strikes to suffer in silence is a common response. Depression crushes my drive to socialize. It crushes my desire to care for my home, to care for myself. It sucks the joy out of the things I love the most. Its a bummer, like a flat tire during the worst snowstorm of your life. And you don’t have a spare.

Well… A flat in the middle of the worst snowstorm of your life and no spare tire. You call someone. I know its hard. I know its embarrassing. I know it can strip you of pride. Rob a person of their ability to feel independent. Left unchecked long enough it can start to tear your life down. It can affect your job performance. Maybe even lead to job loss. Bills pile up; And the hole gets deeper and deeper.

Last Monday I was diagnosed with moderate to severe depression by my Doctor @ Connections. He diagnosed me because I told him something was wrong. And I was given two choices; Take more medication OR Initiate the use of my most powerful and effective tools, one being Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).

For those of you not familiar with CBT, its basically a self or assisted launch of a learned tool. CBT helps a person evaluate situations negatively impacting their mental & physical health. Upon evaluation identify negative behaviours and implement a simple, attainable plan of action to help improve or correct the situation.

My Doctor & Connections are amazing. A worker was notified of my situation, it is not an emergency in my case because I have a strong history of self guided recovery. I set in motion a plan that day to right my course:

  1. Ride my bike! Healthy body, healthy mind. Exercise reduces stress.
  2. Eat Right. Drop the comfort foods, eat green & healthy proteins.
  3. Take out the trash, mentally & physically.
  4. Work Smart, be productive & creative. Feel Accomplished!
  5. Rinse and Repeat, but don’t overdo it. Start Small.

Soo far, since Monday I’ve executed steps 1 through 4 and I’m getting ready for the “Rinse/Repeat” part. I see improvements already. Its small, but ya gotta start somewhere.

Who knows, maybe my medication will increase? Is that bad? Meh, I don’t think so. But I can sure as hell tell anyone reading this;

I’mma fight. I’m gonna use my learned tools & fight!

Knowledge is power.

 

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recovery Day X – reboot

After Recovery…

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It has been a while since my last post… I typically posted here mostly about my recovery progress (sometimes retrogress) and after achieving an unprecedented state of mental health wellness; posting here pretty much completely halted.

Recovery in my experience over the past ten plus years has taught me that it is a perpetual state of mind, body & spiritual evolution. For the longest time effort required to simply exist felt paralyzing. Then life changed for me. Huge life changes. Hospitalization, Medications, countless hours spent with Support Workers, Psychiatrists & Peers propelled me into a state of recovery and beyond. 

Now that I’m here, at recovery the beyond part it is proving a bit illusive. Getting to the hear & now was actually pretty simple in comparison to where I’m trying to go for my future; In the past I set goals, put my head down and worked hard until success was firmly within my grasp.

After locking down full time employment with IDEALBIKES and committing myself to excellence in our Bayers Lake, Halifax N.S. Canadian location the rest fell to the wayside. Creative productivity is practically non existent. Even my hobbies lack the feeling of purpose. They are more of a mindless and madly off in all directions waste of time. Escapism. And… I am NOT Ok with that. Escapism IS fine, but everything needs to be forward moving to satisfy my unquenchable thirst to succeed & matter. Matter to me if not anyone else.

And soo we come full circle back to the origin story of recovery_channel™. A story about moving forward, making progress. The pursuit of Passion, Productivity & Purpose. And most importantly accountability; To Myself.

My Career & Passion @ IDEALBIKES 

My Creative Productions @ recovery_channel™ studio

My sense of Purpose in all I do. Work, Creativity, Escape;

I’m back to the keyboard, I have my head down and I’m getting shit done.

Art; Halifax Harbour

Title; Halifax Harbour, finger painting by Ross W ©2015

Title; Halifax Harbour, finger painting by Ross W ©2015

Wednesday night @ Connections the Art Group was small and we decided to break out the water based paints and have a ton of fun. Or at least I had a ton of fun lol. I love to finger paint, or paint with strange objects ie: I once painted an ink abstract with an Avocado shell. Or sometimes I use fabric swatches, paint the face and use the resulting abstract shapes to construct realistic environments.

Point is, I have fun 🙂

Aries; LIFE – STAR COLLISION!

When my Life & the Stars collide (Pt. 25)

horoscope-aries-tattoo-designSource; Metro | May 6 / 2015 | IT’S ALL IN THE STARS by Sally Brompton

Meet up with friends and do things together today. And don’t limit yourself to social activities. Make the world a better place

So, yesterday I cheated and read my horoscope before the very end of the day. The result… A most canny life – star collision. I was already planning to go on an outing with Connections Halifax to the All Nations Church for a music jam. And jam I did with a group of people I consider to be great friends. I got to sing, smile, laugh and I felt like it was a little more than just hanging out with friends. I met new people and we learned to play new instruments and new songs. I figured this experience was in the stars and maybe Sally nailed it?

That was just the beginning…

At around 8 Pm I started to wander home, I zig zagged and explored the North end of Halifax and at a certain point I found myself standing in an empty intersection. I felt a presence familiar to me in life, I have written about it before. I call it the “Chi” … 

I heard the rattle of accessories and the light thumping of weighted feet moving across the pavement. Turning around I lay eyes on life long friend Deacon Day. He’s carrying a bass guitar and on his way to a show at the Company House, a local venue I’ve never laid eyes on.

Deacon and I walked together to the bar and upon arrival, sitting on the sidewalking is Jont Whittington a facilitator from The Spot and career singer, songwriter. Also a man I consider to be a friend.

And at this point I began to recount the reading from earlier in the day. 

Meeting Deacon & Jont lifted my spirit. Deacon was able to get me in the door as a guest and while I was sitting, thinking about how this was all coming together… Another friend of mine, Mike Nahirnak (also member of the band Zulkamoon) stepped in the door. Then followed Averil, Deacon’s wife and long time friend of mine. (Also saviour, thanks to Deacon and Averil I was set on the path to recovery. It was tough love but necessary and I will always be thankful).

The rest of the evening was exactly as Sally had written. Jont and the band proceeded to make the world a better place. Jont carries soo much energy and charisma! The Company House came alive and in that moment I was smiling like a fool marveling in how happy I was to be among friends. Experiencing a better place. 

Aries; forgeet aboud’it

When my Life & the Stars collide (Pt. 19)

horoscope-aries-tattoo-designSource; Metro | April, 30 / 2015 | IT’S ALL IN THE STARS by Sally Brompton

A problem will most likely resolve itself if you stop worrying about it so much. Mercury’s imminent change of sign will help you to focus your thoughts on more constructive issues.

I have been worrying A LOT about my gut lately. Things have not been going as per usual. And gut worry is the worst, its just this cyclical worry. The more it hurts, the more you worry and the more you worry the more it hurts. I’m getting a handle on it though.

I’ve seen the doctor, he set me up with some tests and that makes me feel better. My mental health in this situation is actually pretty stable, typically I would panic hard. But I’m managing it. It really boils down to recognizing that “shit happens” there is no such thing as perfect health. We live in a world of bacteria, viruses and superbugs of both kind. All that can be done is identify the problem and treat it. I can’t be wasting time on asking why me, or trying to pinpoint vector of infection ect. If it was really serious, something really serious would happen.

Whatever is going on I am managing it and doing what I can to stay engaged.

Blog here, Photography there, work, draw & paint. Cycle! Focus.

Aries; getting better & EVEN BETTER!

When my Life & the Stars collide (Pt. 18)

horoscope-aries-tattoo-designSource; Metro | April, 29 / 2015 | IT’S ALL IN THE STARS by Sally Brompton

Opportunities to better yourself won’t be hard to find over the next few days, so stay alert and be ready to act when you get the chance. Nothing is impossible if you want it enough.

Opportunity is really what has brought me to the place I am today. I have a pretty good sense (from experience) when its a good time to pull the trigger on something. And opportunity is really the name of the game in this city. It is much smaller than Toronto, more people hunting for that perfect moment.

Today I decided to take another swing at generating opportunity by hitting up the staff at Connections with my age old dual role spiel. I don’t think its fair to put a person managing their recovery in a proverbial cage and say “you’ve made it this far and if you want to advance farther, we need you to discharge yourself from the Clubhouse and all your supports. Disconnect yourself from your community. Or go somewhere else. And here is where the “nothing is impossible” bit fits. If I want it enough and I rattle enough cages. Just maybe…